Service Virtualization @ InformationWeek Virtual DevOps Summit


So is this the ultimate “Matrix” moment?  A discussion and demonstration of a virtual service during a virtual event, with virtual booths in a virtual expo center.

Earlier this year, InformationWeek, in conjunction with CA Technologies, delivered the first ever DevOps Virtual Summit. While virtual eventshave been hit or miss in terms of attendance and participation. The summit, though, was clearly a success. More than half of the people who RSVP’d attended the day of event, and more than 160 people have visited the event site after, which continues to be open to visitors.

The event was six hours long and consisted of a series of video broadcasts of DevOps Industry experts and practitioners, including noted speakers from InformationWeek, Gartner, Forrester, Intellyx and CA Technologies.  All of these broadcasts are available to be viewed “on-demand.” [].

 Of the 14 virtual booths in the expo portion of the summit, Service Virtualization had the highest attendance —more than 300 visitors. Of the 10 most-attended booths, six in were related to Service Virtualization or Test Automation and Test Data Management.

While “manning” the virtual booth for the event, I had the opportunity to witness and moderate interesting Q&A’s between attendees and our Pre-Sales Engineers.  Here are some of the top take-away:

  • Regarding testing, when will we use a virtual service versus a real system?
    • Interesting question because we see virtual services being used early in the SDLC and, over time, they are swapped for the real services as they become available or the closer to “production” we get. However, we see that the virtualized services that are deployed can be used to remove the idle time in the SDLC so that we can get to the point where 100 percent of the system is live much more quickly, enabling a substantial reduction in time to market while still meeting quality metrics that are required by the organization.
    • Essentially, the point where the virtualized services are removed is very subjective, and should be determined based on the current situation within the specific iteration of the SDLC.
  • How often is Service virtualization used in Unit testing? Or is it more applicable for SIT and regression?
    • The short answer would be both testing are important areas of use for Service Virtualization. But considerable value is also gained when Service Virtualization is used in Development. The determination for Test vs. Development use is very dependent on the challenges specific to each organization. Substantial value may also be seen in performance testing both at the component level and/or the end of the SDLC.For example, one of our clients has significant challenges doing end to end testing in general because they integrate with 58 other systems internally, and there are two or three of those that are consistently “late to the dance.” As a result, SIT occurs later than they would like, and that means they spend less time doing performance testing. So, by using Service Virtualization, they are able to provide virtual equivalents of those systems to do 90 percent of the SIT testing until those components become available. Performance testing time (calendar days) is not affected as a result.
  • We hear this term a lot, but what is meant by “Shift Left”?
    • The short answer, shift Left is an approach of moving testing as early as possible in the SDLC for better quality, stability and performance. We believe that only by using Service Virtualization are you really able to shift (the time, effort and quality) left.In other words, the idea here is testing can no longer be some point-in-time deliverable, where dev throws the code to QA. Quality inspection must happen at every stage of the SDLC. While Shift Left is born of Agile, it’s not limited to it. Tools like Service Virtualization help in the goal of establishing shift left mentality within organizations.
  • What is the best method of ongoing collection of metrics to prove ROI for SV work?
    • There are many different ways of tracking SV ROI, all of them very company dependent. One way is to look at defect rates and, in particular, when defects were caught. Defects caught sooner they are less costly. Or cost association to defect remediation is also a possible ROI gauge. The voke Inc. Service Virtualization Market report gives a good overview of how various Service Virtualization users have been capturing their ROI.
  • We had a long-time customer come on and give his perspective. We asked how they are using Service Virtualization in his organization. Here is what he had to say:
    • Our organization works a lot with external partners who wish to consume our financial services. However, setting up a production-like environment dedicated for our external partners was not an option. Prior to SV, we shared a development environment between internal and external dev teams. We constantly ran into stability issues. The environment was not always available during deployments. This was causing delays in partner timelines, because they didn’t have a stable environment to run their tests.Now with Service Virtualization, our services are available 24 hours a day, so companies globally can test their own applications against our services without interruptions and down times.

      Recently, I took it to the next step by using virtual services to expose services prior to development so external partners can develop against future code. This was an incredible time save that helped us bring more innovation to market faster.

Make sure to visit the Virtual Summit archive, or, if you were an attendee, leave your comment here letting us know what you thought of the event. Was it a good event?  Was it worth your time?  What would you have liked to see that you didn’t?