In the many projects, developers usually may not consider much about the various non-functional feature in the middle of projects. They frequently focus on only functional requirements and ignore the non-functional requirements until the project goes into QA phase. I've seen that a lot of problems in the heavy load condition were found in the late phase of development and these drove development crazy. I think an important reason why the such problems occur late is that there are no easy way to verify the non-functional requirements(especially performance) in the middle of projects.
nGrinder was created with the goal to make performance test cost 0. I have observed many people install and use nGrinder in their own PC. In this case, it is difficult to say that the performance test cost is 0 because they must provide enough PC machines for agents and prepare prerequisite like Java.
However, if someone in your organization already installed nGrinder to be shared by whole teams, it would make dramatically decrease the difficulties of performance testing. In such a situation, what the others need is simply to open a web browser. I can say the cost of performance testing is 0 practically. NHN operates nGrinder in this way. All developers in NHN is able to log in nGrinder instance automatically using SSO if they type simply http://ngrinder.nhncorp.com in the web browser. Then just typing server target URL in the front page makes the performance testing started.
Problems found by nGrinder might not be easily found in the other ways. These issues are frequently discovered only when the user traffic is flooded in the product server However, it's very easy to find such a problems through nGrinder. The following is the feedback we got from nGrinder user in our company, NHN.
When we used Performance Center, we took times to get the feedback due to complex procedure incluging reservation. Howver with nGrinder we can get the really fast fail and fast feedback. It was a lot of help in improving development speed.
Isn't it what you already saw somewhere else? TDD? It is exactly same with TDD if we replace Performance Center into a tester, performance into function and finally nGrinder to JUnit in above sentences.. It's just like finding the better solution by step by step development. I'd like to call this Performance Driven Development.
If you're already nGrinder user, please make installed nGrinder used by the others. It will dramatically reduce the performance testing cost and you may find the same pleasure I have.