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I want to test performance of particular extension I have installed in Magento store. I was thinking about the following method:

  1. Backup live Magento store with 1000 products and 2000 orders to local wamp server. Disable cache and put at the end of index.php file the following:

    memory_get_usage(true)
    
  2. Install the extension and refresh the page. The extension does all tasks on page refresh. The difference in memory_get_usage will tell me about performance for that extension.

Is that a reliable method, is there any better method?

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You can use Varien_Profiler for these purposes. It is a native Magento tool for testing site performance. There is information about memory usage and timing of particular places in code as well as entire website.

In order to enable it open file index.php and uncomment #Varien_Profiler::enable(); string. Then go to Admin System->Configuration->Advanced->Developer and on Debug tab set Profiler to Yes.

After all actions you should see a table underneath your website which represents all pieces of code where profiler was putted. Here is an example enter image description here

Look at the first line (with mage). And that is exactly the time which Magento uses in order to load all page.

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