What is most valuable?
Zeenyx AscentialTest has a great number of features but the most valuable to me are the ease with which capturing snapshots to create my app object library is one of my favorites. Many of our larger groups use the built-in Subversion feature that allows us to check files in/out seamlessly. We execute our tests from different virtual machines so we use the TestSet feature that sends all results to a MySQL database (we are an Oracle shop and do not have licenses for Microsoft SQL). Finally, running tests to our virtual machines using the Host/Target feature significantly reduces our test execution time.
Update Dec. 2015:
The latest version of Zeenyx AscentialTest (7.8) has incorporated many GUI changes that makes the product much more user-friendly.
How has it helped my organization?
Using the Host/Target feature has allowed our various teams to significantly reduce execution time by sending our tests to virtual machines.
What needs improvement?
Zeenyx has been working on a feature for AscentialTest that will allow our non-automation people (business users, managers, etc.) access to a portal. This portal can be used by non-licensed users by hitting a URL to see the execution status for the testing effort. Currently, to access the testing reports, you must have a licensed install of AscentialTest and be familiar with the tool to generate reports.
For how long have I used the solution?
What was my experience with deployment of the solution?
AscentialTest is a local install license. Since we use a great deal of virtual test machines, deploying the install to our machines can be time-consuming. You can install AscentialTest as a full install or as a runtime but the install is easy to execute.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
Being an automation tool, it seems as though Zeenyx can be very processor intensive while it executes tests. I think that many of the issues we have are the fault of our own network setup but occasionally, our tests run slow. However, AscentialTest rarely has issues.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
We currently have groups with over 15 testers on the automation team that share a Zeenyx project. The product does have limitations on how certain project files are locked (checked-out). You may have to architect your project to allow for multiple files so that different users can checkout files. This is more of a limitation for version-control software.
How are customer service and technical support?
I don't typically deal with any customer service issues related to Zeenyx AscentialTest. Any dealing I have with Zeenyx is done through their technical support group and they are more than happy to forward my question to the correct contact. Technical Support
I have been working with different vendors in my role, I can say without hesitation that the Zeenyx Support Staff are the best group I've worked with. Typically, they have an answer to our question with 24 hours and most likely, the answer is within a couple hours. They go above and beyond with their support level.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
Before Zeenyx AscentialTest, our company was using an old version of SilkTest (that was out of maintenance). The main reason for the switch was that we wanted to have support but were unwilling to continue the maintenance with the previous software.
How was the initial setup?
Since we were moving from a different software tool (SilkTest), the initial setup was easier since Zeenyx supports some SilkTests scripts (many functions were named differently). We also wanted to update our scripts (since they were old) immediately after converting to AscentialTest.
What about the implementation team?
We implemented Zeenyx AscentialTest in-house and did not use a vendor team. This question does not apply to our company but I have to type 120 characters in this field so I am continuing to type words.
What was our ROI?
I do not have insight into ROI. I can tell you that since we distribute our tests using the Host/Target model we saved a great deal of execution time after we switched from SilkTest. Since our execution time decreased substantially,
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
Our company was an early adopter of AscentialTest. We have an Enterprise license so can install the software on as many machines as we want. If you are planning on using the Host/Target feature, I would recommend buying more Runtime licenses as they are a little cheaper.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
The decision to move to Zeenyx AscentialTest was done prior to my arriving at this company. I have been told there was no other evaluation done.
What other advice do I have?
I have been working with Zeenyx AscentialTest for almost 4 years and have a very good relationship with them. I will say that they are genuinely interested in improving their product. We have given them multiple ideas of new features and they have implemented several.