HP's New TruClient, Sprinter Simplify Software Testing

HP's new TruClient and Sprinter testing technologies enable enterprises to test Web 2.0 and rich Internet application technologies and to automate manual testing, respectively.

BARCELONA, Spain - As part of its new Application Lifecycle Management solution, HP has introduced its new TruClient technology, which reduces application test cycles by simplifying various time-consuming tasks, while the new Sprinter technology "automates" manual testing.

Introduced as part of HP's new ALM 11 solution, the company's new TruClient software automates one of the most time-consuming tasks - the creation of scripts for performance testing. The HP TruClient technology is now available within HP LoadRunner and HP Performance Center. HP announced the new solutions at its HP Software Universe 2010 conference here.

Although modern testing tools have simplified the process of capturing test scripts by recording a user's interaction with an application, there is still a significant amount of programming required to make scripts usable, said Jonathan Rende, vice president of product marketing for software at HP. This is especially true for modern Web 2.0 applications, where current scripting methods are often unable to accurately capture all user interactions with the application. Programming scripts is time consuming, requires skilled technical experts, and for Web 2.0 applications, it is often inaccurate.

Rende said TruClient is particularly useful for testing the new front-end Web 2.0 applications that enterprises have begun to develop. He said with new applications written in Web 2.0 technologies such as JavaScript and Ajax, and protocols such as HTML5, TruClient will become ever more useful to HP's enterprise clients.

Indeed, Abe Naguib, director of architecture and infrastructure engineer at AIG Chartis, said he sees TruClient as a big time saver for AIG's testers who up to now had to manually configure scripts that often took considerable effort.

However, integrating the script recording and editing process enables clients to customize tests as they record interactions with the application. This streamlines the scripting process to reduce testing time and shorten release cycles. Faster, easier scripting also improves efficiency in organizations using Agile methods, Rende said.

HP TruClient technology can precisely and efficiently test all types of Web 2.0 applications, regardless of the framework or toolkit. Reliable, accurate performance testing early in the application life cycle eliminates potential problems throughout the application's life.

Moreover, moving the scripting process to the browser enables novice and non-technical users to participate in script creation. The user interacts with an application, and HP TruClient captures every step in the form of a script. The scripting engine eliminates the need for correlations and complex programming to make scripting easier. This enables users with limited programming skills to create scripts for testing applications and ensure the applications will meet current business needs.

Leveraging non-technical resources for the scripting process also enables organizations to focus highly skilled programmers on advanced and more technically demanding tasks, HP officials said.

Meanwhile, HP has moved to automate the often manual task of testing the quality of software applications with its new Sprinter technology.

"We've accomplished an oxymoron of automating manual testing," said Mark Sarbiewski, vice president of application solutions at HP. "With Sprinter we offer a new product capability where we allow manual testers to automate tasks and drive tests on other parts of the application to hugely reduce the time that's needed to do quality testing."

Manual testing can often be very tedious and time consuming. The productivity of a tester having to reference multiple sources -- test script, test data, a defect tracker, application under test -- at once to conduct their test is greatly reduced. In today's world where software needs to operate in multiple operating system environments and Web browsers, manually testing software against all these options adds a large amount to the time needed to release an application.

HP Sprinter software offers a new approach to manual software testing, Sarbiewski said. Essentially, HP Sprinter software is an easy-to-use solution that enables fast, accurate and efficient manual software testing. It fully integrates with HP Application Lifecycle Management and HP Quality Center software. And the HP Sprinter software includes the following features:

  • An intuitive, unobtrusive user interface
  • Automated test-data injection
  • Advanced Tool kit for communicating defects
  • Accelerated defect logging with Smart Defects
  • Mirror testing - simultaneous testing of multiple environments
  • Support for exploratory testing

Manual tests are launched from HP Application Lifecycle Management or HP Quality Center into HP Sprinter where the tester carries out the test. The actions and results of the test are simply recorded and results are saved within HP Application Lifecycle Management or HP Quality Center. Defects can also be directly logged within HP Application Lifecycle Management or HP Quality Center without leaving HP Sprinter.

AIG's Naguib said he welcomes both TruClient and Sprinter into his testing portfolio, particularly for the recording of test results and other data, which he said will be useful in the case of audits or compliance issues down the road.

TruClient and Sprinter evolved from software HP gained in its acquisition of Mercury Interactive in 2006.