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Gatling vs JMeter: Top 10 Key Differences

January 25, 2024Priyanka
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Gatling vs JMeter Top 10 Key Differences
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A modern web application has complex architecture and internal dependencies. And, has to go through different types of testing. Functional testing is one of the most commonly done testing on web applications, before delivering the software. 

Functionality and user experience of a web application depends on the performance of the web application. Hence, performance testing is also essential before a release. 

Gatling and JMeter are the most used performance testing tools. However to conclude which is the better for performance testing we need to understand the Gatling vs JMeter key differences. In this article, we have explained Gatling vs JMeter in detail.

Why Performance Testing?

Performance Testing is an evaluation of the system in terms of responsiveness, and stability under expected and unexpected loads. Performance testing focuses on simulating multiple users at the same time 

Performance testing cannot be carried out manually, it requires the aid of tools. There are many tools in the market such as K6, Gatling, JMeter, etc. These tools simulate multiple users and record their behavior. The JMeter and Gatling are most popular in this space. Let’s understand them in detail.

What is Gatling?

Gatling is a load testing tool, built using the Scala language. It supports most of the modern protocols. Gatling uses comparatively fewer resources.  Gatling is available as an enterprise tool and as an open-source tool. The commercial version of Gatling offers more functionality for generating load and reporting.

What is Apache JMeter?

Apache JMeter is a pure open-source performance testing tool. It comes with a rich IDE. Also supports record and playback, drag and drop support, and scripting with different languages. 

JMeter has a huge community base so it is easy to resolve the bottlenecks. JMeter can be used with Blazemeter if you don’t like to maintain infrastructure. JMeter is most popular due to its simplicity and user-friendliness.

Gatling vs JMeter: Detailed Comparison

Gatling and JMeter both are the most popular tools for performance testing. As we know each and every tool has pros and cons. In this section, we are comparing Gatling and JMeter to provide better clarity. This also helps to choose the right performance tool for your organization.

The basis of comparison Gatling JMeter
DefinitionGatling is a performance testing tool. It is available in both open-source and enterprise editions. Gatling supports Scala, Java, and Kotlin languagesJMeter is a pure open-source performance testing tool. JMeter is developed and managed by the open source community members. JMeter supports both scripting and non-scripting types of performance testing.
LicenseOpen source (Apache 2.0) and Commercial LicenseOpen source Apache 2.0
CI/CD IntegrationGatling provides out-of-the-box support for CI/CD integration. It can be integrated into Jenkins, Bamboo, and TeamCity.JMeter supports CI/CD Integration. However, the option is not out of the box. You need to do some configurations to integrate CI/CD Systems
Developed withBuilt with Scala, Akka, and NettyBuilt with Java
GeneralityCLI tool, Reporting, Dashboard, and Real-time monitoring.Supports CLI execution, reporting however doesn’t support out-of-the-box real-time monitoring
MaintenanceGatling EnterpriseApache software foundation/ Open Source community members
Built-in FacilitiesSupports CI/CD integrations, Reporting, Dashboard, CLI ExecutionSupports UI-based test execution, Drag and drop support, Reporting, CLI Execution
Ease of UseRequires programming skills to useIt requires minimal technical knowledge to use
Protocol SupportSupports HTTP, FTP, TCP, JDBC, JMS etc.Supports HTTP, HTTPS, JMS, etc.
Real-Time Test MonitoringYesSupport is not out of the box, need to configure third-party plugins
PluginsFewer third-party plugins are available.As it is community-driven, a massive number of plugins are available to use
Third-party script recorder availabilityDoesn’t support third-party script recorderSupports third-party script recorders.
Source control supportsGatling tests that are saved as code, so it is easy to use source control tools such as Git, Bitbucket, etc.JMeter stores files in .jmx format; it doesn’t fit well with source control tools.
Test ExecutionCLIServer mode, CLI and GUI

Gatling and JMeter Similarities

Opensource

JMeter and Gatling both are available as open source. JMeter is purely community driven so it offers only an open source version. Whereas, Gatling provides additional features with a commercial version. However, the open-source version should fit your basic needs.

Protocol support

Both tools support modern protocols such as HTTP, HTTPS, DB Testing, and JMS.

IDE for Scripting

The JMeter has a rich UI interface with drag-and-drop support. Gatling also introduced the feature-rich UI to make the scripting faster. So, the IDE is available in both tools.

Execution Report

The JMeter offers different types of reports, HTML, text-based reports, etc. Gatling offers HTML reports by default. However, with advanced versions, different reports are possible.

Cloud Service Integration

There are cloud service partners like Blazemeter, which help to reduce the infrastructure burden. Both tools support cloud service integration.

Live test run monitoring

The JMeter offers live test monitoring with third-party plugins. The Gatling advanced version supports live test monitoring.

DevOps Support

Though the JMeter was not built for CI/CD, it supports almost all different types of DevOps tools however, some configuration is required. The Gatling supports CI/CD integration with less configuration as it is built with DevOps support in mind. 

CLI Mode

Both JMeter and Gatling Support CLI mode, but the JMeter supports additional test execution types such as UI Mode and Server mode.

Gatling vs. JMeter: Key Differences

  • UI: JMeter provides a rich UI with all possibilities of customization, whereas the Gatling UI is basic, and listeners are not supported. While analyzing the performance bottlenecks it is difficult without result listeners
  • Scripting: JMeter supports UI-based drag and drop, as well as different programming languages such as Groovy, Beanshell, etc. The Gatling supports Scala, Kotlin, and Java
  • File format: JMeter saves the file in .jmx which is a customized XML format, with this it is difficult to integrate with the source control and perform the reviews. The Gatling saves the script in programming language format so it is easy to integrate with the source control tools.
  • Cloud Service provider: The JMeter is supported by almost all modern cloud service providers however the cloud service provider for the Gatling is limited.
  • Test Execution: The JMeter test can be executed with Server mode, UI mode, and command line mode. The Gatling supports only CLI mode.
  • Reports and Customizations: JMeter is an open source that supports all possible customization. Reports can be tweaked as per organization requirements. The Gatling supports reports, but customization is very limited.
  • User-friendliness: The JMeter offers a rich UI, but the UI mode is resource heavy. Users are facing performance issues with JMeter. The JMeter UI consumes a lot of resources. The Gatling feels lighter while using, and the resource is optimized well.

JMeter or Gatling, which is better?

As we discussed above, both the tools have pros and cons. The better tool needs to be selected based on the organization’s requirements. Gatling offers an enterprise version that is bundled with all different features and is easy to use. However, you need to pay for the license. The JMeter comes free, it is more flexible and customizable, but it requires technical knowledge for advanced scripting.



Conclusion – Gatling vs JMeter

Performance testing is a crucial part of testing web applications. A performance testing tool plays a key role in providing the desired outcome. Both JMeter and Gatling are popular in the market. JMeter is easy to use for basic performance testing, the advanced scripting requires good technical skills. Gatling provides both open-source versions and commercial versions. The functionality of the open-source version is limited. Though the commercial version offers more rich features it adds cost overhead to the organization. Considering the cost and cloud service providers – most organizations choose JMeter. However, you need to consider the cost, upskilling resources, infrastructure maintenance, cloud integration, and other organization requirements while choosing the best performance tool.

Frequently asked questions

Is Gatling good for performance testing?

Gatling is a good performance testing tool, it closely competes with JMeter. The commercial version of Gatling is more capable and easy to use. Furthermore, Gatling uses modern tech stacks which helps to provide accurate results.

Apache JMeter is open source and it offers a lot of customizations. The documentation is very clear. It also offers a lot of community plugins which help to customize the performance testing tool the way the organization wants. The LoadRunner is a proprietary tool by Micro Focus; though it offers rich features, the licensing cost is an additional overhead.

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