I am trying to find if any work has been done on automating the testing of distributed applications. By automation i mean given the initial & goal state create the testcases & by distributed i mean appliactions like VoIP wherein there is a communication between user-user and not user-server. Please let me know of any work that has been done in this area. Or what are the callenges that you foresee in this area.
I have made use of VoIP assessor from NetIQ and ixChariot (Formerly of NetIQ) from Ixia Communications. Both work very well to represent the network flows associated with peer-to-peer or client-to-server style communications. If you're working with VoIP, the MOS score in the VoIP assessor product will be especially useful as a quality determinant for pre-deployment testing.
The initial challenges for me have always been the same with any application. Since I work in the load and performance universe more than functional, my biggest challenge has always been to get the right people to assist in building the load model and then actually finding someone who is willing to place their signature on the line that the model is correct. Once that is done, the process of scripting and building the performance test in either VoIP Assessor or Chariot is very straightforward, as is execution.