With its dynamic scalablity, flexibility and virtualized resources are provided as a service, Cloud Computing is seen as the dawn of a new era for application services and has received its fair share of plaudits. With Google Documents, Flickr, Buzzword and Zoho as examples of general purpose applications that use Cloud Computing Technology it is only a matter of time before Cloud Computing is seen as the most viable option for application development and deployment.

With IT Giants such as Microsoft, Google and Amazon all vying for a position within the Cloud Computing space you’d expect there to be a plethora of Cloud based Software Applications currently available. Even though this is sure to be the case in the near future, at present Software Testing appears to be the current favoured use of Cloud environments.

A recent survey by Evans Data, an independent research firm that conducts periodic surveys of developers , found that of those using cloud facilities to run applications, 49.8% said they were doing so experimentally or for prototyping; 28.6% for non-critical business applications and 21.6% for business critical applications. They see Cloud environments as being “good for testing because they can be set and torn down quickly, sometimes at less expense than on-premise facilities”.

The question to answer then is what Software testing tools are available to aid developers and Quality Assurance individuals in their application development and testing procedures. Software Testing tools that are used for testing of conventional applications are of little use when applied to Cloud Testing as there is a need for tools to allow Software developers and Tester to analyse the network, desktop and implications of changes within the Cloud.

A growing variety of Cloud based Open Source Software Testing Tools are being published.

Cloud Tools for example is a set of tools for deploying, managing and testing Java EE applications on Amazon’s Elastic Computing Cloud (EC2). Containing three main parts, which includes machine images that can be configured to run on Tomcat and Maven & Grails plug-in this is an amazing tool to use for Open source cloud software testing.

PushToTest TestMaker is a distributed test environment that can run tests on test equipment, or in a Cloud Computing environment. It introducing specific commands to support automatic Cloud Testing services.

Cloud Tools and PushToTest Test Maker represent examples of products that will help shape the future of robust Cloud based Software Testing Applications. Though the technology is in its infancy, a number of testing tools are emerging that can provide assistance in cloud based software testing.