Performance Testing Vs Load Testing Vs Stress Testing

By | December 14, 2021

In the field of software development, we might have to come across with a lot of ways or techniques that are often misunderstood or interpreted as being the same. But in reality, they are quite different from one another. In simpler words, load testing, performance testing, stress testing are such techniques that are often misunderstood as same.

In this article, we are going to talk about the difference between the three above-mentioned techniques as they are highly important in the software field and one need to understand what they are and their use. So, let us take a look at the difference between these terms.

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Load Testing / Performance Testing Stress Testing – The Comparison:

Below you can find all the necessary details about load testing, performance testing, and stress testing.

Explaining what Load testing is?

Now comes the second type which is the load testing. Load testing is used for the purpose of testing the system by increasing the load on the system constantly and steadily until it manages to reach to the threshold limit. Load testing is known to be the subset of performance testing. There are many suitable automation tools available in the market and load testing can be done very easily using such tools. The best tools that are used for this purpose are LoadRunner and WAPT.

The other two names of load testing is Volume testing and Endurance testing. But know that volume testing only focuses on databases whereas endurance testing can test the entire system by keeping it under controlled load and that too for a controlled time period. Load testing is used for assigning the system the most incredible job that is, to test the endurance of the system and then make sure that all the results are monitored efficiently.

Did you know, in a zero-load situation, the system is often fed with an empty task for determining the behavior of the system?

In load testing, there are many attributes to be monitored like

  • Peak performance.
  • Response time under different loads.
  • Adequacy of H/W environment.

And many more.

What is the goal of load testing?

Load testing has the following goals set.

  • Load testing makes sure that all the defects are exposed clearly in an application which is relevant to buffer overflow, mismanagement of memory, and memory leads. With that, there are some issues that may arise due to load testing which are load balancing problems, capacity of existing system, and bandwidth issues.
  • Similarly, load testing determines the upper limit of all the components of an application. This includes database, network, and hardware etc.
  • Moreover, load testing also sets the SLAs for an application.

Explaining what performance testing is?

It is a type of testing that is performed with the aim to become certain as to how the components of a system are performing and that too within a given specific situation. We usually consider this testing as a subset of performance engineering that is mostly focused on pointing out the performance issues that one might face in design and architecture of a software product.

Resource usage, scalability, and realibility of products are the terms that are also validated under this testing type.

What is the goal of performance testing?

Now comes the most important part to understand that is, the goal of performance testing. The following are the primary goals of performance testing.

  • It is used to establish a benchmark behavior of the system as there are a variety of industry-defined benchmarks that need to be met during performance testing.
  • Many people think performance testing is used to find defects in an application or either pass or fail the test but in reality, it is used to address the very critical yet important task of not only setting the benchmark but standard for an application as well.
  • Similarly, another important goal of performance testing is to monitor the application performance very closely.

Note: The benchmark or standard of any particular application has to be set in terms of characteristics like response time, speed, resource usage, stability, and throughput.

Software development process is taking benefits from many agile frameworks including scrum, XP and others. Using scrum, we can optimize testing process and make our teams more productive. For team performance improvement, taking scrum quizzes and practice tests are quite helpful.

Explaining what stress testing is?

With stress testing, different types of activities are performed to overload the existing resources with excess jobs and are then carried out in an attempt of breaking the system down. Negative testing can be considered the same as stress testing where all the components from the system are removed.

Stress testing is also known by the name fatigue testing as it is used for capturing the stability of an application and this is done by testing it beyond its bandwidth capacity.  In short, we can say that stress testing is used for evaluating the behavior of an application in both peak load and normal conditions.

What is the goal of stress testing?

  • The main goal of stress testing is to understand, analyze, and interpret the post-crash reports and define the behavior of the application once it fails.
  • Similarly, the biggest challenge of stress testing is to make sure that the system is not compromising the security of sensitive data once it has failed.
  • In case the stress testing is successful, the system can then return to its normal state thereby securing all its components even after this terrible breakdown.


After reading the above comparison you can now easily understand what these three terms are and their goals. We hope our readers have found this article to be helpful in clearing their concepts.