Oracle Application Testing Suite Review

You can make your database repository fully redundant and infinitely scalable.


Valuable Features

One feature that I find valuable and very useful is the ability to use a different version of the database for the repository other than the Oracle Lite DB that it comes with by default. This means you can make your database repository fully redundant and infinitely scalable.

Improvements to My Organization

OATS provides the functionality to institute a corporate-wide standardized method and approach for all types of application testing. This tool is perfect for organizations that do a lot of in-house development and/or regularly perform maintenance. I would say it is a mandatory tool to have and use if your organization is planning to perform a major upgrade or begin a large implementation.

Room for Improvement

There is one piece of functionality that is currently not offered and would be very good to have: Support for Digital Certificates authentication and Single Sign-On (SSO). This method of authentication, to the best of my knowledge, is still not supported by OATS and would be a great addition to the tool.

Use of Solution

I used OATS for over five years. While working for Oracle Consulting, I've seen the tool used successfully at numerous clients.

Deployment Issues

It is easy to deploy.

Stability Issues

It is very stable.

Scalability Issues

It is very scalable.

Customer Service and Technical Support

Within the Oracle ecosystem, OATS has a small but very capable and technically advanced support team. To the best of my knowledge, most of these folks came to Oracle as part of the acquisition process of OATS, meaning they were supporting and/or working in product development of OATS for a long time.

Previous Solutions

I used HP LoadRunner in the past and do not really have a preference for either OATS or LoadRunner.

Initial Setup

The initial set-up/install/deployment is very straightforward and should not present any problems for any reasonably technical person.

Implementation Team

While working with Oracle Consulting, I implemented OATS myself personally as a hired Oracle consultant as well as together with clients' in-house teams.

One advice I would give if you are planning to do a multi-node install on Linux/Unix is as follows: Unless your organization is very familiar with the product and complex architectures that require fault tolerance have someone from Oracle Consulting come in for a short engagement, set everything up, document everything and do a knowledge transfer. This way you will be ahead of the curve from the start. From personal experience, any kind of rework is always more costly than doing it right from the start.

ROI

It's a little complicated to calculate an ROI of a product that isn't replacing another product. I would say the best way to calculate an ROI is not to focus on OATS and its associated cost, but to calculate the amount rework needed to fix issues if OATS were not to be used.

Other Advice

There are basically only two products that cover the space of Performance/Scalability/Functional Testing on the market. OATS from Oracle and LoadRunner from HP.

One advice for anyone planning to implement OATS: Make sure there is an existing Java skill-set in your organization as OATS' recording language is Java.

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: I previously worked for Oracle Consulting.
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