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Load Testing

So I'm working on this "new" project and I just got curious about stress/load testing the server with hundreds/thousands of calls to the site over various pages and I am wondering if anyone out there would be willing to share how they go about testing their stuff?

Benchmarking is good and all of that, but getting "real-life" stress data is different.

I'm downloading and compiling Apache Flood right now to see what it has to say.

The only thing I really test is how fast pages come up in the browser, and how long it takes to load a page with an empty cache on the first access.

Truth be told, I've never been responsible for an application with so many hundreds of thousands of requests that load actually mattered. If I was getting slowness it was either 1) the way my page was built (too large images, too many images, table structure, too large of a page, not so good layout, etc), or 2) something was wrong with my host. So I either redo my template/page or yell at my host to get off their ass Wink

It just seems to me that with the state of server power and costs, and the comparitively cheap availability of managed clusters or cloud hosting, that load is rarely an issue.

Facebook, Yahoo, Google, Twitter...they should care about load. The rest of us, we should be so lucky as to build something so wildly popular - I welcome the problem when it arises.

But unless you expect to be so popular, it seems to me that its best to spend one's time building your next project.

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