Since being released in 1998, JMeter continues to be one of the most popular load testing software solutions in the market. If you work in software development, it is likely that you are already familiar with, or at least heard of JMeter at some point in your career.
Advantages of JMeter
Here are some of the reasons that continue to make JMeter one of the most widely used load testing solutions:
For organizations that are budget conscience, or simply do not have a large budget set aside for performance testing, JMeter provides a free solution to teams looking to carry out performance testing. There are other open-source options available, like Gatling, Taurus, Locust, or The Grinder, but JMeter offers more features, functionalities, and capabilities compared to these other tools.
Support for Multiple Protocols/Applications
JMeter supports a wide range of protocols, including HTTP/S, SOAP, REST, Java, NodeJS, LDAP, JDBC, SMTP, POP3, IMAP, and many more.
JMeter is a Java-based desktop application, which means it can run on multiple platforms, such as Windows, Linux, Mac OS, and Ubuntu, making it a prime tool for others to be able to write and customize their own tests. Due to its continued popularity and community support, it has evolved over time and supports nearly 100 different plugins that extend JMeter capabilities into other areas, such as creating custom reports, functions, dashboards, visualizations, and more.
Installing JMeter is a simple and straight forward process. It is as easy as downloading and installing the right binary JMeter files, however, just make sure you have the latest Java release installed prior to installing JMeter. After that, you can immediately begin to build your first JMeter test.
Disadvantages of JMeter
For all these great JMeter features and capabilities, there are some drawbacks to this tool that commercial load testing tools are better at handling.
Another drawback is that you cannot run load tests from multiple geographic conditions. A good performance testing tool should be able to simulate the user behavior as closely as possible, and that includes testing from where your users are located, for the most accurate test results.
Top 5 Load Testing Alternatives to JMeter
Let us now look at some of the best load testing alternatives to JMeter. It is important to note that all the following load testing platforms also support either importing or converting JMeter test scripts in order to scale load tests from the cloud.
1. LoadView JMeter Load Testing
LoadView is one of the most comprehensive and complete cloud-based load testing solutions in this group. LoadView can test websites, web applications, web services and APIs, and streaming media. In addition to that, they have a web-based script recorder to simulate and test user behavior under load. The platform also supports importing and running Web API load tests against Postman Collections, and JMeter scripts.
One of the disadvantages of JMeter is the inability to run large-scale load tests from different regions. With LoadView, users have the option to select from any combination of over 20 cloud-based virtual server locations (AWS and Azure Cloud Services), so you do not have to worry about the time and costs associated with configuring additional hardware or setting up your test environment like you would have to do with JMeter. LoadView manages all of this, allowing performance engineers to focus on testing by allowing them to quickly set up a load test plan and run large-scale tests, up to one million concurrent users, with just a few clicks of the mouse.
Users also have additional options to choose from a variety of test scenarios that best match their specific testing needs. To learn more – visit LoadView online or schedule a live demo with their engineers.
BlazeMeter is another popular cloud-based load testing tool, but BlazeMeter was specifically designed around JMeter.
Like LoadView, BlazeMeter takes the limitations of JMeter, like the ability to easily run large-scale tests with thousands of virtual users or running tests from specific geo-locations, providing an easy way for users to configure and run tests without having to deal with or work around these limitations.
Compared side-by-side, the BlazeMeter and LoadView platforms may seem very similar, and in some ways they are. However, we have found that some of the features, such as access to load testing behind the firewall (for load testing internal web applications), access to static IPs, and SSO support are not standard features within the core BlazeMeter plans. However, these are standard features within all the LoadView plans, which are definitely important features to have for performance testing.
Loadium, like BlazeMeter, is another performance and load testing tool that was built to support all the open-source features and capabilities of JMeter. However, in addition to supporting JMeter, Loadium also supports two other open-source load testing tools, Gatling and Selenium. And like LoadView, Loadium also supports load testing Postman Collections for Web API load testing. The difference is that Loadium converts Postman Collections into JMeter scripts for testing. Loadium supports testing from multiple geo-locations from the cloud (AWS), so you can test from the areas where most of your user traffic comes in from, providing you with more realistic test data.
Flood is another complete load testing platform, providing features like LoadView offers, such as real browser-based load testing, as well as supporting open-source load testing frameworks like JMeter and the ability to test JMeter scripts from the cloud. In addition to that, Flood, like Loadium, supports Gatling and Selenium. One of the benefits of supporting all these open-source tools is that it gives performance engineers the option to use the tool that they are more comfortable with. Furthermore, running both protocol-based and real browser-based tests can provide a more comprehensive view of web page or application performance.
However, Flood is a very comprehensive solution and compared to some of the other tools on this list, like BlazeMeter, it may end up being more expensive depending on your team’s performance testing needs.
Additionally, k6 scripts can be created from other existing formats and tools, like HAR files and JMeter and Postman scripts. With the acquisition with LoadImpact, the k6 platform also includes a cloud load testing service, k6 Cloud, allowing developers to seamlessly scale their scripts into the cloud for load testing. However, for example, in order to access the same number of locations that LoadView provides standard, you would need to invest in the most expensive k6 plan.
Conclusion: The Right Load Testing Tool Makes all the Difference
When it comes to load testing, finding the right tool that supports all your requirements can be a time-consuming task. We hope this article gives you a better idea of the most popular load testing tools in the market today and what each of them brings to the table. Open-source load testing tools like JMeter are great for being able to run small load tests, but in order to be able to properly scale your tests to match your what your actual traffic will be, you need the power of a commercial-based platform.
In our review, LoadView provides the perfect balance of features, benefits, and capabilities, without the large investment that other load testing tools require.