Why writing this guide
Even though many of the topics addressed in this guide apply equally well to other types
of applications, the topics are all explained from a Web application perspective for
consistency and to ensure that the concepts are presented in a manner that is most
intuitive to the majority of anticipated readers.
This guide is intended to be tool-agnostic. What that means is that none of the concepts
presented in this guide require any specific tool to accomplish, though some techniques
or concepts will require the use of a certain class of tools.
This guide does not directly address performance tuning. Performance tuning is
extremely application- and technology-specific and thus is not a good fit for the style and
format of the guide. The guide does, however, address high-level approaches around how
performance testing and performance tuning activities overlap and feed one another.
Why We Wrote This Guide
We wrote this guide to accomplish the following:
To consolidate real-world lessons learned around performance testing.
To present a roadmap for end-to-end performance testing.
To narrow the gap between state of the art and state of the practice.
Features of This Guide
Approach for performance testing. The guide provides an approach that organizes
performance testing into logical units to help you incrementally adopt performance
testing throughout your application life cycle.
Principles and practices. These serve as the foundation for the guide and provide a
stable basis for recommendations. They also reflect successful approaches used in the
Processes and methodologies. These provide steps for managing and conducting
performance testing. For simplification and tangible results, they are broken down
into activities with inputs, outputs, and steps. You can use the steps as a baseline or to
help you evolve your own process.
Life cycle approach. The guide provides end-to-end guidance on managing
performance testing throughout your application life cycle, to reduce risk and lower
total cost of ownership (TCO).
Modular. Each chapter within the guide is designed to be read independently. You
do not need to read the guide from beginning to end to benefit from it. Use the parts
Holistic. The guide is designed with the end in mind. If you do read the guide from
beginning to end, it is organized to fit together in a comprehensive way. The guide, in
its entirety, is better than the sum of its parts.
Subject matter expertise. The guide exposes insight from various experts
throughout Microsoft and from customers in the field.