Tag Archives: Testing

04 Mar

Why we need a tester / QA – Software testing

“Why Testing”, “Importance of Software testing”, “Scope of testing”, “How to become a tester”, “Training for software quality assurance / software testing” …

Stop there… Above are the topics well discussed and explained at a lot many places and a lot many times, but this is not what we’re here for. I happened to face the question recently “Why’d you need a software tester as a dedicated resource?”

I did not want to get into deep technicalities of the SDL or STL Cycles to prove the roles but in plain simple words I’d try explaining the importance of the role that a tester plays and why a tester is required as a dedicated resource.

For any (software) product, testing is must. And, software tester can do better testing as compared to the developer or programmer who’s written the software.

Programmers, don’t feel bad. No camel sees his hunch!

“Why Tester”… hmmm let me make some points now:

1. A development team should avoid testing its own program (unit testing is a responsibility) – tester will check from his / her doubtful eyes :)

  • Developer may be biased with the fact that he has developed it, so may not test some areas as he’s confident enough that he has developed it bug free. (it’s like one always favours own baby) They usually have an attitude of:
    We take pride on what we developed. We defend ourselves “it is not my fault!”
  • He may not think out of the box, or all possible test scenarios that can break the system as he is used to work in the same shell.

2. A software should be tested in a neutral way to have unbiased testing results. This can be done only by a third person (not developer himself).

3. A developer is usually working under high pressures to implement requirements asap. Due which quality is compromised a lot many times. So, it’s better to have a separate tester.

4. Testing is not about just validating that system is performing what it is supposed to, but importantly it is also about assuring that the system is not performing what it is not supposed to perform. A tester delicately does that and does it better.

  • Testing needs a NEGATIVE approach, which a developer doesn’t have. TESTING IS DESTRUCTIVE PROCESS : A CREATIVE DESTRUCTION
  • Testing is not just after-programming evaluation, but it is key integral part of each phase of SDLC.
  • Testers try to find faults, developers try to take pride. (oops.. no hard feeling guys)

5. The more early a defect is found the less costly it is to fix.

I may sound aggressive at some lines; it’s not because I hate developers or there is some personal grudge against, but it’s rather to emphasize the necessity and my answer to Why Tester :).

Jointly, developers and testers fulfill the requirement successfully in favour of their employers and clients.

Anyways, I wanted to answer “Why Tester” without using technical-words and in fun way. I hope this is sufficient to explain why a software tester is required.

I’ll leave you with two lines as post-script:

If we’re perfect, there’d not be tester or QA and we know that nobody is perfect!!

Testers pursue defects, not the people behind the defects!!

17 Mar

Selenium vs QTP differences and usage-quick reference

This article will describe you about QTP vs Selenium point by point in a easy to understand way. In the field of Software Quality Assurance (QA) automation tools, Selenium and QuickTest Professional (QTP) are often compared for their features, usability usecases and differences. Whether Selenium or QTP is a better automation tool or tool of your choice!!

Both are distinctively unique and good in their functionality and successful tool individually. To have a quick look, below is a tabular comparison of Selenium and QTP on different parameters.

Selenium versus QTP

Parameter Selenium QTP
Licensing Cost It is open source. So, there’s no licensing or renewal cost for this tool. It’s free of cost. User needs license for QTP which is very costly.
Additional Plug-ins It supports addition of plug-ins to achieve desired results that are not provided by Selenium Core.

Since, selenium is open source, plug-ins are also available free of cost.

It also supports add-ons, but user needs to purchase license for them.
Efforts and Skill User needs to have good amount of Java skill and more coding effort is required to implement the functions. It requires less effort to create a script, as it has a very good user friendly script development environment.
Actual End-user Simulation Selenium performs actions in the background on the
browser i.e. user can execute tests with the browser minimized.
QTP executes scripts equivalent to a person performing those steps manually on the application. So, browsers can’t be minimized (user cannot perform any other action on the machine while test is running).
Operating System Selenium supports more number of OS like Windows, Linux and Macintosh. QTP supports only Windows.
Application Type It can be used to test only web based applications. It can test web-based as well as desktop applications.
Browsers It supports IE, Firefox, Safari, Opera and few more. It supports only IE and Firefox.
Script Development Language Scripts can be developed in any of the languages like Java, Ruby, Python, C#, Perl, Groovy and many more. Scripts can be developed only in VBScript or JavaScript.
Technical Support Since it is an open source, it has no official tech support. QTP offers very good technical support via phone, mail, web forum.
Test Development Environment Test scripts can be developed in various IDEs like Eclipse, Visual Studio, Netbeans etc. Test scripts can be developed only in QTP.

Download a quick Selenium-vs-QTP in PDF Format.

Thanks for reading.

04 Nov

Software Quality Attributes-Parameters Explained

What is a software quality and what attributes are used to measure it? A very common question you might have faced during Testing or QA Interviews. Many of the Software Testers or Software Quality Analyst don’t know about the attributes at all. This post would help you understand the attributes in simple and sober words.

Software Quality:

Software quality is the characteristic of the software that defines how well the software meets the customer requirements, business requirements, coding standards etc. It can be divided into two categories:

Software Functional Quality:  characteristics that define how well the software meets functional requirements, and how well it satisfies the end-users.

Software Non-Functional Quality:  characteristics that define how well structural requirements are met that support the delivery of functional requirements. It is usually related to software code and internal structure.

The different software qualities can be measured through various software testing techniques and tools. Following are the different attributes (parameters) that are used to measure the software quality:

Testability – How easy it is to test the software and to what extent it can be tested.

Usability – It defines how user friendly the software is.

Understandability – How easily the software can be made understood to a layman about its functions/purpose

Consistency – How far the software is consistent / uniform in terms of GUI, terminologies, conventions.

Efficiency – It defines the amount of work that the software can do in defined timeframe with minimum resources used.

Effectiveness – The extent to which the software satisfies the user and meets user requirements

Accuracy – How accurately the software works with gives the correct results.

Maintainability – How easily the software can be maintained in terms of enhancements/new features/bug fixes.

Reliability – How reliable the software is in performing required functions under different scenarios/conditions.

Portability – How easily the software can be transported and run in different environments e.g. platforms like operating systems (Linux, Mac, Windows), machines it can run on.

Security – How secured the software is in terms of access authorization and personal data like passwords.

Robustness – How robust the software is under unexpected events like software crash, power-off etc and saves its data.

Comment if you have any queries regarding this. Thanks for reading. 

09 Oct

Bug / Defect Priority vs Severity Matrix

In Software Testing, deciding how important the defect is and how soon the defect should be fixed is as important as finding a defect! This depends on how you actually place the defect into Priority-Severity matrix.

I have come across a lot many test engineers, who get confused between priority and severity of a defect. Definition is important but understanding is even more important.

Definitly customer (guidelines) plays a major role in the decision but I’d like to convey in terms of the general scenario. I’d like to add some easy words to clarify the confusion (probably forever).

Defect Priority: Priority is something that is defined by business rules. It defines how important the defect is and how early it should be fixed.

Defect Severity: Severity is defined by the extent of damage done by the defect. It defines how badly the defect affects the functionality of the software product.

Again you’re fed with another definition? No!! Let’s take some examples…

They say a picture is better than a thousand words:

defect-priority-severity-matrix

High Priority and Low Severity:

Company logo is half cut on the home page of its website. This is high priority defect because displaying an incomplete company logo would put bad impression on business as this would defame the company or website. So, this defect should be fixed as soon as possible.

As far as severity is concerned, this defect has got low severity because it is not impacting any functionality of the website.

High Priority and High Severity:

Login button is not clickable on the login page of a web application. This is a high priority defect because this is stopping users from using the site. So, this should be fixed at once.

At the same time, this defect is of high severity because none of the other functionalities can be carried out.

Low Priority and High Severity:

A twisted scenario which rarely occurs but makes the application crash is an example of a low priority defect because user doesn’t come across this scenario normally and can be fixed later.

On the other hand, it is having high severity because it makes the whole application break and no functionalities can be performed.

Low Priority and Low Severity:

Spelling mistake in any of the words on some inner pages of the website that is rarely accessed is an example of low priority defect because it doesn’t matter much to the users as business is not impacted and can be fixed later. It is also having low severity because it is not impacting any functionality of the website.

I hope this clears the defect attribution. comments and questions are welcome.

26 Feb

QA-Testing Definitions-Interview Questions: Part-III

QA-Testing Definitions-Interview Questions: III (T – Z):

Race Condition:

A cause of concurrency problems. Multiple accesses to a shared resource, at least one of which is a write, with no mechanism used by either to moderate simultaneous access.

Ramp Testing:

Continuously raising an input signal until the system breaks down.

Recovery Testing:

Confirms that the program recovers from expected or unexpected events without loss of data or functionality. Events can include shortage of disk space, unexpected loss of communication, or power out conditions.

Regression Testing:

Retesting a previously tested program following modification to ensure that faults have not been introduced or uncovered as a result of the changes made.

Release Candidate:

A pre-release version, which contains the desired functionality of the final version, but which needs to be tested for bugs (which ideally should be removed before the final version is released).

Sanity Testing:

Brief test of major functional elements of a piece of software to determine if its basically operational.

Scalability Testing:

Performance testing focused on ensuring the application under test gracefully handles increases in work load.

Security Testing:

Testing which confirms that the program can restrict access to authorized personnel and that the authorized personnel can access the functions available to their security level.

Smoke Testing:

A quick-and-dirty test that the major functions of a piece of software work. Originated in the hardware testing practice of turning on a new piece of hardware for the first time and considering it a success if it does not catch on fire.

Soak Testing:

Running a system at high load for a prolonged period of time. For example, running several times more transactions in an entire day (or night) than would be expected in a busy day, to identify and performance problems that appear after a large number of transactions have been executed.

Software Requirements Specification:

A deliverable that describes all data, functional and behavioral requirements, all constraints, and all validation requirements for software/

Software Testing:

A set of activities conducted with the intent of finding errors in software.

Static Analysis:

Analysis of a program carried out without executing the program.

Static Analyzer:

A tool that carries out static analysis.

Static Testing:

Analysis of a program carried out without executing the program.

Storage Testing:

Testing that verifies the program under test stores data files in the correct directories and that it reserves sufficient space to prevent unexpected termination resulting from lack of space. This is external storage as opposed to internal storage.

Stress Testing:

Testing conducted to evaluate a system or component at or beyond the limits of its specified requirements to determine the load under which it fails and how. Often this is performance testing using a very high level of simulated load.

Structural Testing:

Testing based on an analysis of internal workings and structure of a piece of software.

System Testing:

Testing that attempts to discover defects that are properties of the entire system rather than of its individual components.

Testability:

The degree to which a system or component facilitates the establishment of test criteria and the performance of tests to determine whether those criteria have been met.

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Testing:

• The process of exercising software to verify that it satisfies specified requirements and to detect errors.
• The process of analyzing a software item to detect the differences between existing and required conditions (that is, bugs), and to evaluate the features of the software item (Ref. IEEE Std 829).
• The process of operating a system or component under specified conditions, observing or recording the results, and making an evaluation of some aspect of the system or component.

Test Automation:

Read Automated Testing.

Test Bed:

An execution environment configured for testing. May consist of specific hardware, OS, network topology, configuration of the product under test, other application or system software, etc. The Test Plan for a project should enumerate the test beds(s) to be used.

Test Case:

• Test Case is a commonly used term for a specific test. This is usually the smallest unit of testing. A Test Case will consist of information such as requirements testing, test steps, verification steps, prerequisites, outputs, test environment, etc.• A set of inputs, execution preconditions, and expected outcomes developed for a particular objective, such as to exercise a particular program path or to verify compliance with a specific requirement.

Test Driven Development:

Testing methodology associated with Agile Programming in which every chunk of code is covered by unit tests, which must all pass all the time, in an effort to eliminate unit-level and regression bugs during development. Practitioners of TDD write a lot of tests, i.e. an equal number of lines of test code to the size of the production code.

Test Driver:

A program or test tool used to execute a tests. Also known as a Test Harness.

Test Environment:

The hardware and software environment in which tests will be run, and any other software with which the software under test interacts when under test including stubs and test drivers.

Test First Design:

Test-first design is one of the mandatory practices of Extreme Programming (XP).It requires that programmers do not write any production code until they have first written a unit test.

Test Harness:

A program or test tool used to execute a test. Also known as a Test Driver.

Test Plan:

A document describing the scope, approach, resources, and schedule of intended testing activities. It identifies test items, the features to be tested, the testing tasks, who will do each task, and any risks requiring contingency planning. Ref IEEE Std 829.

Test Procedure:

A document providing detailed instructions for the execution of one or more test cases.

Test Scenario:

Definition of a set of test cases or test scripts and the sequence in which they are to be executed.

Test Script:

Commonly used to refer to the instructions for a particular test that will be carried out by an automated test tool.

Test Specification:

A document specifying the test approach for a software feature or combination or features and the inputs, predicted results and execution conditions for the associated tests.

Test Suite:

A collection of tests used to validate the behavior of a product. The scope of a Test Suite varies from organization to organization. There may be several Test Suites for a particular product for example. In most cases however a Test Suite is a high level concept, grouping together hundreds or thousands of tests related by what they are intended to test.

Test Tools:

Computer programs used in the testing of a system, a component of the system, or its documentation.

Thread Testing:

A variation of top-down testing where the progressive integration of components follows the implementation of subsets of the requirements, as opposed to the integration of components by successively lower levels.

Top Down Testing:

An approach to integration testing where the component at the top of the component hierarchy is tested first, with lower level components being simulated by stubs. Tested components are then used to test lower level components. The process is repeated until the lowest level components have been tested.

Total Quality Management:

A company commitment to develop a process that achieves high quality product and customer satisfaction.

Traceability Matrix:

A document showing the relationship between Test Requirements and Test Cases.

Usability Testing:

Testing the ease with which users can learn and use a product.

Use Case:

The specification of tests that are conducted from the end-user perspective. Use cases tend to focus on operating software as an end-user would conduct their day-to-day activities.

User Acceptance Testing:

A formal product evaluation performed by a customer as a condition of purchase.

Unit Testing:

Testing of individual software components.

Validation:

The process of evaluating software at the end of the software development process to ensure compliance with software requirements. The techniques for validation is testing, inspection and reviewing.

Verification:

The process of determining whether of not the products of a given phase of the software development cycle meet the implementation steps and can be traced to the incoming objectives established during the previous phase. The techniques for verification are testing, inspection and reviewing.

Volume Testing:

Testing which confirms that any values that may become large over time (such as accumulated counts, logs, and data files), can be accommodated by the program and will not cause the program to stop working or degrade its operation in any manner.

Walkthrough:

A review of requirements, designs or code characterized by the author of the material under review guiding the progression of the review.

White Box Testing:

Testing based on an analysis of internal workings and structure of a piece of software. Includes techniques such as Branch Testing and Path Testing. Also known as Structural Testing and Glass Box Testing. Contrast with Black Box Testing.

Workflow Testing:

Scripted end-to-end testing which duplicates specific workflows which are expected to be utilized by the end-user.

-- Kedar Vaijanapurkar --