Web Application Testing - Sloppy Internet Channel Emulator.

    Today we’ll talk about a very simple utility, but nonetheless, which can become your constant and reliable friend and helper.

    Of all the types of testing web applications, the most, in my opinion, popular and widespread, is testing the system for users with different access channels. Well, maybe, besides the compatibility test in different browsers. And so, in almost every project we need or very desirable to see how people with different connection speeds will see our project. This is especially true for web applications - sometimes the operability of the project sometimes depends on it, in particular, when large AJAX libraries are loaded and the project often interacts with the server. Here is just for such cases there is a Sloppy project .

    ArchitecturallySloppy is a proxy server that emulates access to a specified site through a channel with a specified bandwidth - from 9.6 Kb modem to 512 Kb. The question is why only such a small upper speed threshold, because channels of 1 MB or more are already quite widespread. Most likely it is understood that if the speed is 1 Mb or more, then any project will load so fast that it makes no sense to test, although I am inclined to argue in this case too - there are projects in which even such a channel will cause, if not delays, then simply the download process is slow and this is associated not so much with the channel as with the rest of the costs, so I would still like to test on such clients.

    Of the available settings, we have: the address of the site we are going to test, the choice of speed (from the grid 9.6, 14.4, 28.8, 56, 128, 256 and 512 Kb), as well as the port through which we will receive the page. By the way, in view of its “proxy nature”, it can be used both for testing a local project and any project on the network. Of course, in this case you need access to the Internet, while just for a local server test this is not required at all (well, except for downloading the package).

    After setting parameters and starting, the browser opens the local address 127.0.0.1 on the port that you specified in the options (by default, 7569) and opens the site you specified.



    By the way, Sloppy itself is interesting in that it is distributed as a JNLP file, that is, it uses Java Web Start to run, while the code itself is downloaded from the project’s site, however, its size is completely miniature. You can download the source code separately.

    Naturally, in more powerful and specialized testing packages, you can manage literally all aspects of emulation and connection much more flexibly and more fully, but do you often need a couple of dozen parameters for simple verification? But after running a project a couple of times through Sloppy, you will immediately understand where and what can be fixed, and then proceed to full-fledged testing using professional tools.

    In terms of development, integration looks interesting or just working together with utilities to monitor the loading of scripts and other page elements and analyze this process. For example, you can perfectly test your applications using the Sloppy + Firebug + YSlow bundle! Now this is a set for serious use. What do you think?

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