Gartner’s latest research on service virtualization and API testing tools emphasizes the importance of testing at the API level. In fact, the report calls for “Extreme Test Automation” at this level:
“Testing at the API/message layer (services, message queues, database abstraction layers, etc.) offers several distinct advantages for enabling Continuous Testing at the speed of DevOps:
- Stability: While GUI tests often fail due to inconsequential application changes, a failure at the API/message level typically signals a fundamental flaw in the application logic–something likely to impact the core user experience. If you’re configuring a test suite failure to serve as a “gate” along the automated deployment pipeline, it’s important to ensure that every failure indicates a truly show-stopping problem.
- Speed: Traditional methods of testing, which rely heavily on manual testing and automated GUI tests that require frequent updating, cannot keep pace with the speed required for DevOps. Testing is delayed until the GUI is available, which is typically late in the process. Moreover, GUI tests are notoriously brittle and require significant updating with each application modification. API tests can be defined as soon as the service description (e.g., Swagger or RAML) is available, can be executed much earlier in the implementation process than GUI tests, and require minimal maintenance.
- Accurate risk assessment: In modern applications, the functionality exposed at the GUI layer is just the tip of the iceberg. The core of the application logic is controlled by the API/message layer. Without exhaustive testing of critical user transactions at the API/message layer, it’s hard to rest assured that today’s highly- distributed systems truly function as expected.”
With this emphasis in mind, the key takeaways from the report are:
The report provides the following recommendations :
Gartner cites the following as being the most important capabilities and features associated with API testing and service virtualization tools:
The new Gartner Market Guide for API Testing and Service Virtualization found that demand for service virtualization and API testing solutions will quickly increase with faster delivery of new business functionality to more complex IT environments. This research highlights important market trends and attributes to help heads of development and testing adopt the right solution.
Download a complimentary copy of this Service Virtualization and API Testing guide to learn more about:
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