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Walkthrough: Adding Data Binding to a Web Performance Test (XML File)

In this walkthrough, you will bind a Web performance test to an .XML file and verify that it works correctly.

By using data binding, a database can provide data for a Web performance test. You can bind data from a data source to a part of a Web request that requires data, such as a form post parameter. For more information, see Binding a Data Source to a Web Performance Test.

In this walkthrough, you will perform the following tasks:

  • Add data binding to a Web performance test

  • Run the Web performance test to verify that it works correctly

Here’s what you’ll need:

For this walkthrough, you will need a sample data source to bind to. You will create a simple .XML file data source.

To prepare the data source

  1. Create a new folder and name it Data.

  2. In the Data folder, create a new text file and name it ColorData.xml.

    Note Note

    You can use any text editor, for example Notepad, to create the file.

  3. Add the following to the text file:

    <?xml version="1.0"?>
    <ColorData>
        <Color>
            <ColorId>0</ColorId>
            <ColorName>Red</ColorName>
        </Color>
        <Color>
            <ColorId>1</ColorId>
            <ColorName>Blue</ColorName>
        </Color>
    </ColorData>
    
  4. Save and close the file.

    Note Note

    You can open the file in an XML editor and confirm that the XML is well-formed.

To prepare the Web performance test

  1. Open the Web application that you created in Walkthrough: Creating a Simple Web App.

  2. Press CTRL+F5 to run the Web application in the browser. You will see the first page. Close the browser.

    Note Note

    This starts the ASP.NET Development Server that runs the Web application your Web performance test will test. You will see the ASP.NET Development Server icon in the notification area, at the far right of the taskbar.

  3. Open the Web application that you created in Walkthrough: Recording and Running a Web Performance Test.

  4. In Solution Explorer, double-click ColorWebTest.webtest. The Web Performance Test Editor appears and the list of Web requests is displayed.

To add the data source to the Web performance test

  1. In the Web Performance Test Editor, choose the Add Data Source button in the toolbar.

    The New Test Data Source Wizard appears.

  2. In the Data source name box type ColorsXML.

  3. In the Data source type list choose XML File.

  4. Choose Next.

  5. In the Choose an XML file box enter the path and name of the file, or choose the ellipsis to browse to the file. For example, type the following:

    <Your Path>\Data\ColorData.xml

  6. In the Table drop-down box select Color.

    The data from the XML file appears in the Preview data pane.

  7. Choose Next.

  8. Under Choose from the available tables for this data source, select the check box next to Color.

  9. Choose Finish.

    A dialog appears and prompts you to add the file to your current project.

  10. Choose Yes.

    A Data Sources node will be added to your Web performance test, and the text file will appear as a table in the hierarchy.

    For the purposes of this walkthrough, it is not necessary to add the file to the project. In the future, you can use the following information to help you decide:

    Response

    Result

    Advantage

    Yes

    The file is copied to the project.

    When the project is deployed, there is no additional work that is required.

    No

    The file is not copied to the project. When the project is deployed, you might have to update the path of the file.

    Some data files can be very large, and should be maintained separate from the project. Some data files must be shared among several members of a team, and should be maintained in a central location that all members can access.

  11. On the File menu choose Save ColorWebTest.webtest to save the Web performance test.

To add data binding to the Web performance test

  1. In the Web Performance Test Editor, find the request that redirects to the page Red.aspx. This should be the second node in the request list.

    Important note Important

    The Web application uses a redirect to move from the page Default.aspx to the page Red.aspx. In the Web Performance Test Editor, the request list will show Default.aspx, not Red.aspx, for the request that you are trying to find. To find the correct request, expand the request node, expand the Form Post Parameters folder, and confirm that there is an entry RadioButtonList=Red.

  2. Select the RadioButtonList1 node.

  3. In the Properties window, find the Value property. It is currently set to Red because that is what you selected when you recorded the Web performance test. Choose the property, and then choose the down arrow that appears.

  4. Expand ColorsXML, expand the Color table, and then select ColorName. The RadioButtonList is now bound to the data source.

  5. On the Test menu point to Edit TestSettings, and then choose Local (local.testsettings).

  6. In the Configure Test Settings dialog box, select Web Test in the left pane, and then select the One run per data source row option in the right pane. This causes the test to run iteratively, one time for each row in the database. On each test iteration, the cursor moves to the next row in the database.

    Caution note Caution

    All the results are stored in memory. Therefore, using the One run per data source row option will not scale well to large data sets. To run through all rows in a large data set, the recommended approach is to run the web performance test in a single user load test. To run through each row one time, select the data table in the Web performance test and set Access Method to unique. The load test will not have the same memory constraints as the Web performance test.

  7. Choose Close.

  8. On the File menu choose Save ColorWebTest.webtest to save the Web performance test.

To verify the Web performance test

  1. In the Web Performance Test Editor, choose Run Test to start your Web performance test and display the Web Performance Test Results Viewer.

  2. In the Web Performance Test Results Viewer there will be two runs of the Web performance test. Run 1 will use the first row of data, and Run 2 will use the second row of data. Notice that Run 1 visits the page Red.aspx, and Run 2 visits the page Blue.aspx.

    Note Note

    You might have to scroll up in the Web Performance Test Results Viewer to see both test runs.

  3. Choose the Context tab and observe how different values are bound into the context on the two runs. Each bound column is set to a context parameter of the form "DataSource1.Table1.ColumnA".

    Note Note

    The error in Run 2 is caused by the response URL validation rule because the URL does not match the one that was recorded. You can remove this validation error by deleting the Response URL validation rule under the Validation Rules node in the Web Performance Test Editor. For more information, see Using Validation and Extraction Rules in Web Performance Tests.

In this walkthrough you added data binding to a Web performance test, using an .XML file. To learn about binding to other data sources, see the following:

How to: Add Data Binding to a Web Request

Walkthrough: Adding Data Binding to a Web Performance Test (CSV File)

Walkthrough: Adding Data Binding to a Web Performance Test

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