12 April 2024
octobits-test-environment-management-tools-review-and-comparison

Test Environment Management Tools review and comparison (Image by Optimole)

Test environment management tools are vital in the software testing process, offering a structured approach to managing test environments.

These test environment management (TEM) tools facilitate the creation, allocation, and maintenance of test environments, ensuring that the necessary hardware, software, and data configurations are in place for effective testing.

We know, for a deeper dive into the world of IT environment management, we’ve got just the resource for you.

 It’s a treasure trove of insights and detailed information on managing IT environments effectively. 

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, this page is your gateway to becoming well-versed in the nuances of IT environment management.

The impact of TEM tools on the testing process is significant. They streamline workflow, minimize conflicts in resource allocation, and improve the accuracy and efficiency of the testing process.

Choosing the right TEM tool is crucial. A suitable tool aligns with the organization’s specific needs, integrates seamlessly with existing systems, and is scalable to accommodate future growth.

This choice directly affects the testing team’s productivity, the quality of the test outcomes, and, ultimately, the software’s reliability.

For a more complete understanding and to explore a curated list of TEM tools to transform your software testing process, let’s read the list and details below.

Selection Criteria for Test Environment Management Tools

When selecting test environment management tools, it’s essential to consider several key criteria to ensure they meet your business and IT needs effectively.

First, consider the features offered. A good TEM tool should provide robust functionality for managing, tracking, and scheduling test environments.

This includes managing configurations, handling simultaneous testing scenarios, and offering real-time status updates.

Scalability is another critical factor. The tool must be able to grow with your organization, handling an increasing number of environments and more complex configurations without performance degradation.

Ease of use is equally important. The tool should have an intuitive interface, making it accessible for all team members, thereby reducing training time and speeding up adoption.

Integration capabilities can’t be overlooked. The TEM tool should seamlessly integrate with other software development and testing tools, such as CI/CD pipelines, version control systems, and issue tracking applications. This integration ensures a smooth, continuous workflow.

Lastly, community support is a valuable aspect. A tool with strong community support provides access to a wealth of shared knowledge, troubleshooting tips, and potential customizations. This support can be crucial for resolving issues quickly and effectively.

With careful consideration of these factors, you’ll be well-equipped to choose a tool that seamlessly complements your testing processes and ensures efficient and reliable test environments for your team.

Best Choices of Test Environment Management Tools

So how would you choose the one that’s perfect for your needs? It’s not just about the strongest or the fastest, is it?

It’s about finding that unique blend of features, scalability, ease of use, integration capabilities, and community support.

So in 2024, we’ve rounded up 7 top TEM tools. Each of these tools brings something special to the table.

Some may offer exceptional features, while others may excel in scalability or ease of use. 

How important are these to you? Then there’s integration – how well does the tool work with other systems you use? 

Finally, think about the community and support around each tool. How valuable is this in your decision-making process?

Once you consider these factors, you’ll find a TEM tool that not only manages your environments, but also fits seamlessly into your workflow. 

Would you agree that understanding your specific needs is key to making the right choice?

1. Mabl

Mabl is a highly regarded test environment management tool that offers a range of features and benefits for businesses and IT teams.

With its focus on visual testing and self-healing environments, Mabl stands out as a top choice among test environment management tools.

Pros of Mabl

Mabl is praised for its ease of use, which allows for quick setup and operation. It excels in end-to-end (e2e) testing, where users have noted its effectiveness in creating and maintaining tests, as well as in investigating test failures with detailed screenshots and HAR captures.

The platform’s user interface is straightforward, enabling the setup of automated tests for tasks like monitoring website performance and checking broken links.

Users have also commended Mabl for its responsive customer support and solid documentation, which is constantly updated with new features and changes.

Cons of Mabl

While Mabl excels in UI testing, it may have limitations when it comes to other types of testing, such as performance or security testing. 

Extensive integrations are a plus, but customization through APIs is currently restricted.

Price of Mabl

The pricing details of Mabl can vary depending on the specific requirements of each business. 

So, it is recommended for you to visit the official Mabl website or contact their sales team for accurate and up-to-date pricing information.

2. Rancher TestCloud

Rancher TestCloud, known for its containerized environments and Kubernetes integration, stands out in the landscape of TEM tools. 

Rancher TestCloud designed for managing Kubernetes clusters, offering a range of features that cater to enterprise needs.

Pros of Rancher TestCloud

Rancher TestCloud excels in cluster operations and management, allowing users to install, run, and manage Kubernetes clusters on various infrastructures.

Its user interface provides clear visibility into resource consumption and enhances Kubernetes’ CI/CD capabilities using tools like Helm. 

This makes application workload management efficient and transparent. Additionally, Rancher offers robust enterprise support, aiming for convenient scaling and adaptability to individual Kubernetes installations.

The tool’s open-source nature and focus on preventing lock-in with a well-documented uninstallation process are also significant advantages.

Cons of Rancher TestCloud

One of its components, Fleet, which is part of its CI/CD capabilities, has been described as difficult to operate efficiently.

This could introduce complexities, particularly for new users or those with limited Kubernetes experience. 

Integrating Rancher with various DevOps endpoints and services might not always be smooth, and some users have noted that the tool’s self-service workflows are still evolving.

Price of Rancher TestCloud

As an open-source tool, Rancher TestCloud does not have a direct cost associated with its basic version.

However, enterprise users might incur costs related to deployment, customization, and potentially using the Rancher Hosted version, which focuses on providing comprehensive support throughout the lifecycle.

3. PCloudy

PCloudy empowers you by offering unparalleled real-world device coverage and powerful insights.

PCloudy is distinguished by its global test infrastructure and real-time reporting capabilities, designed to facilitate cross-browser and cross-platform testing.

Pros of PCloudy

PCloudy offers a kind of virtual globe-trotting for your tests. This capability ensures that your application can adapt and perform seamlessly whether it’s being used in Asia, Europe, or America.

With parallel testing, you can identify bugs and performance issues in real time and efficiently optimize your app’s performance wherever it is used.

Whether you’re a startup looking to make a name for yourself or a large enterprise looking to maintain an edge, PCloudy scales with you and eliminates the typical infrastructure challenges.

PCloudy fits seamlessly into your existing ecosystem, be it CI/CD pipelines, test frameworks, or defect tracking systems. This integration capability simplifies and streamlines your entire testing process.

Cons of PCloudy

PCloudy’s pricing structure includes various factors like device types, minutes used, and parallel testing, which can be a bit intricate for budgeting.

Another consideration is PCloudy leans towards real device testing, limiting options for emulators or simulators, which might be preferred for specific testing scenarios.

Price of PCloudy

PCloudy offers flexible pricing plans based on your usage needs. Their Live Testing, a basic plan, starts at $131 per month for 5 parallel live sessions with unlimited user logins.

They also offer a free lifetime public cloud license to early stage mobile app startups. The plan is to help startups focus on innovation and ideas instead of worrying about the bottlenecks of app development and delivery. 

4. Apwide Golive

Apwide Golive stands out as a test environment management tool, particularly for its integration within Jira.

It’s designed to enhance visibility and orchestration of test environments, making it a valuable tool for organizations that already utilize Jira.

Pros of Apwide Golive

Apwide Golive leverages the familiarity of Jira to manage and schedule your test environments.

This integration facilitates effective management and scheduling of test environments directly within the Jira ecosystem.

Its REST API also allows for custom integrations, enhancing its utility within diverse toolchains.

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Best Test Environment Management Tools (Image by Hystax)

Cons of Apwide Golive

However, its dependency on Jira could be a limitation for teams not using this platform.

Additionally, setting up environments involves configuration files, unlike Mabl’s visual approach, which might require some technical knowledge.

Price of Apwide Golive

Apwide Golive pricing is based on the number of Jira users in your team. Their Golive for Jira Cloud Plan is free for 10 users. Then up to USD 0.70 per user per month. They also offer a 30-day free trial to test the waters before committing.

5. Enov8

Enov8 empowers you to bring order and clarity to your testing workflows, especially for smaller projects and teams new to TEM tools.

Enov8 forte lies in intuitive workflow management and role-based permissions, bringing structure and discipline to your testing endeavors.

Pros of Enov8

Enov8’s strengths lie in its ability to manage complex computer systems and provide a holistic view of the IT and test environment landscape.

Enov8 offers real-time health status monitoring and analytics to gauge the business impact of various IT operations. 

Enov8 also facilitates automation for project and test teams through a self-service gateway, aimed at improving productivity.

The tool’s visualization capabilities are notable, allowing for both a broad and detailed view of the IT landscape.

Another significant feature is the protection of PII data across non-production environments, which is crucial for maintaining data security and compliance.

Enov8 also promotes holistic test data management through self-service accessibility and governance mechanisms.

Cons of Enov8

The complexity of the tool might pose a challenge for smaller teams or organizations with limited IT management resources.

Additionally, the proprietary nature of the software might limit its flexibility compared to open-source alternatives.

Price of Enov8

Regarding pricing, Enov8 operates on a subscription model, and interested parties should contact the company directly for specific pricing details.

6. Plutora

Plutora empowers you to craft exquisite testing experiences with meticulous planning and detail.

Plutora might be the brushstroke you need. Its specialty lies in crafting in-depth runsheets and managing complex test environment configurations with surgical precision.

Pros of Plutora

Plutora is renowned for its ability to create detailed runsheets, guiding testers through specific testing scenarios.

This functionality enhances the precision in managing complex test environment configurations.

The runsheets not only provide clear instructions but also help in maintaining an orderly testing process.

Additionally, Plutora is recognized for its value stream management, offering solutions that span release, test environment, and analytics.

Plutora dashboard integrates with existing tools, providing a unified view of releases and analytics, which is a significant advantage for enterprise IT management.

Cons of Plutora

However, Plutora may not be the ideal choice for all project sizes.

Plutora is primarily suited for smaller projects and teams, mainly due to its focus on manual configuration. This focus might present a challenge in scalability for larger projects.

Furthermore, the tool’s integration capabilities are somewhat limited compared to other test environment management tools in the market.

Price of Plutora

Regarding the pricing, Plutora offers custom plans tailored to the specific needs of organizations.

The exact pricing details are not readily available and would require direct contact with the vendor for a quote. 

7. ServiceNow Test Management

ServiceNow Test Management is recognized for its deep integration with the ServiceNow platform.

ServiceNow Test Management empowers you to seamlessly integrate your testing activities into the heart of your ServiceNow kingdom. 

Pros of ServiceNow Test Management

One of the significant advantages of ServiceNow Test Management is its seamless integration with other ServiceNow modules like Change Management and Incident Management.

This integration allows for efficient management of test cases, defects, and reports within a familiar interface for ServiceNow users.

The platform is particularly effective for organizing and prioritizing service tickets, offering self-service tools, and providing detailed ITSM reports and dashboards.

These features facilitate a comprehensive management approach, catering to various aspects of IT service management.

Cons of ServiceNow Test Management

ServiceNow Test Management is primarily focused on integration within its own ecosystem, which might restrict its capabilities regarding external tool integrations. 

This could be a drawback for teams looking for a tool with broader integration capabilities. 

Additionally, while the familiar interface is a plus for current ServiceNow users, the platform’s complexity may present a learning curve for new users or those unfamiliar with ServiceNow.

Price of ServiceNow Test Management

Regarding pricing, the specific details for ServiceNow Test Management are not readily available and would likely vary based on the scale and specific needs of the organization.

It is advisable for you to contact ServiceNow directly for detailed pricing information.

What are the Three Environmental Management Tools Used to Assess the Impacts?

In the intricate landscape of IT ecosystems, three essential tools stand out for managing and assessing impacts.

With test environment management , envision a streamlined and efficient testing process.

These tools act as meticulous organizers, providing the right testing environment every time, eliminating resource scrambles and buggy configurations.

In the broader IT ecosystem, Configuration Management Tools (CMTs) are like the memory keepers of your software’s journey, tracking every update and change. 

They’re your solution to avoiding mysterious glitches and ensuring stability.

Then, there are the Application Performance Management Tools (APMs) – the guardians of your applications’ health. 

They continuously monitor app performance, keeping an eye out for any issues that could impact user experience.

Together, these tools are more than just software; they’re essential allies in creating a robust, efficient, and user-friendly IT ecosystem. Embrace their power to transform your IT operations!

Conclusion

As we into 2024, these tools should be viewed not just as utilities, but as integral partners in our quest for greater efficiency and resilience.

Each tool, from Mabl to ServiceNow Test Management, brings its own unique strengths and challenges to the table. 

Together, they enable organizations to streamline operations, reduce risk, and foster innovation. 

And, please be aware of the often overlooked and underrated best practices in IT Environment Management. Understanding these nuances is essential for ensuring a smooth and efficient IT ecosystem.

The real difference comes when we weave these tools into our operational fabric, transforming the way we manage and optimize our test environments for future challenges. 

The true measure of progress is in the ease of use of these tools and the profound impact they have on your operations.

Remember, in the simplicity of their use lies the depth of your progress.