Central is the primary browser tab in which CloudTest runs, and contains CloudTest's primary features, organized by sections. Central's first section—highlighted in light blue—contains the Resources page, and the primary test building tools. When a new or existing item is opened, it opens in a new tab, and Central remains the leftmost tab at all times. Opened or closed nodes in the tree remain open between sessions.
Resources Page Navigation
The Resources Page is accessible both before and after login (some utilities are unavailable unless you are logged in). Click Resources at the bottom of Central to return to this page at any time. Use Resources to download the SOASTA Conductor, Firefox Browser Recorder Add-on, as well as the SOASTA Command Line client.
SOASTA CloudTest includes a unified toolbar with context-sensitive commands for each editor. Buttons behave as real buttons; including mouse over, and key down, as well as active and inactive (when not relevant).
The “New” button displays the icon of the selected Central list node to reinforce the current context of selection.
Click the drop-down to the right of New to create new items without having to first navigate to that node and its page.
Buttons are grouped by similar actions—Save/Save As, Undo/Redo, and Cut/Copy/Paste. Editor-specific buttons are also grouped, including Play/Stop, Load/Unload.
Editor Specific Toolbar Buttons
Editor-specific buttons appear in the main Toolbar when the given editor is open. For example, the Clip Editor, Add drop-down menu provides the ability to easily add generic (or empty) messages, browser actions, delays, checkpoints, comments as well as all collection types to a test clip.
Refer to Create Any Clip Element from Toolbar for more about this menu.
In the Clip Editor, dynamic scrolling and page management controls make browsing large clips easier.
In the Composition Editor, Repeat Composition, Load/Unload Composition, and Play Mode buttons provide immediate control over test composition staging.
Use Repeat Composition to play your test composition in a continuous loop.
Use the Load and Unload Composition toggle to stage complex test compositions prior to clicking Play. Once load begins, it can be stopped by clicking the icon again. This pre-staging of test compositions is particularly useful in Cloud environments such as on Amazon EC2. Load Composition can help identify any problems with the staged components of a given test.
Refer to Staging a Complex Test Composition for Play for more about using play-related Composition Editor toolbar buttons.
Use the Play Modes button to conveniently modify test composition properties to SOASTA recommended settings. Refer to Play Modes and Results Logging.
The Etc. (…) button has been added to the right of the Toolbar to conserve space and keep less-frequently used operations nearby. This menu contains context-sensitive commands. Among the commands found on the Etc. drop-down menu are Export and and Import.
Note: The shot on the right shows a timed composition. For more about timing types see Adjusting Band Timing.
Tabs in the Workspace
CloudTest’s tab-based interface keeps frequent tasks at your fingertips and all your work in one workspace. If vertical space is used up the open tabs slide to the left and the Etc. tab appears.
Click this tab for drop-down access to the other open tabs.
When title text does not fit in the tab width, that title is abbreviated using “…”). The “…” appear in the middle so you can see the start and end of the tab title.
Tabs are used throughout the system; in dashboards, recorders, and other parts of the user interface. In some contexts, such as with Properties, second level tabs are presented.
In the Composition Editor, there is a Play Mode toggle button. Click to access a drop-down menu and to set Play mode or to review the current mode. Play Mode provides “recommended” settings for both Functional (General) and Load (Load) testing. Pick Custom to enter Custom Mode using your own Composition settings.
Play modes are a shorthand for sets of Composition properties suitable for certain types of testing. In the screenshot on the right, the play mode is set to General. Changing one or more settings manually defines a "custom" play mode.
Note: The default for the Composition Editor’s Preview Mode in both "General" and "Load" modes is FALSE. Preview mode prepares a complex test for play but does not send the messages or actually play the test. This can be useful when setting up tests for multiple Maestros and/or Results Services.
Every item has scope. Setting an item’s scope as restrictively as possible allows CloudTest to make memory optimizations during runtime by throwing away unnecessary information. Targets are a special case, they can only be public or local; they cannot be private, because Targets need to be accessed by the Messages or Browser Actions in the Test Clip. Scope for the targets in a test clip can be viewed and set in the Included Targets list of the Clip Editor.
For example, if a message is “private”, then its response will not be accessed by another item in the composition, and CloudTest can throw away the response as soon as it's received. Therefore, for efficiency, the scope should be set to “private” whenever possible, and set to “local” or “public” only as an exception. For this reason, all objects are “private” by default (except for targets, which are local by default since they can’t be private).
Scopes are part of recent CloudTest improvements that include a variety of memory optimizations. For example, automatic truncation of a Message response if it is known to not be needed, release of out-of-scope responses, and the ability to create and release request data as it comes in or goes out of scope.