What is Software Testing? Process, Methodology, and Tools

If you are someone who is searching, what is software testing? a hearty welcome. First of all, Software testing is dope! No doubt in that. But, what is it? Why do we need it desperately in the current app-driven world?

Software testing by definition is a process that validates and verifies the requirement document of a software product. To be precise, from functionality to security, software testing or quality assurance process ensures stellar quality by validating and verifying various attributes of your software for your software product.

At present, fast-paced production and daily enhancement has become a normal thing.

Millions of dollars are invested into every software product and users are presented with a multitude of options that are just a few clicks and seconds away.

Let’s have a look at some statistics to cement the statement

  • In 2022 many apps faced huge losses because users were no longer interested in them. Low UX (user experience) is the prime reason. The loss was expected to be $57,000 every month per app
  • It is expected that by 2023, app revenue is will reach 935 billion. In order to tap in apps needs to be of pristine quality since only 9% of people will remain in an app even after experiencing bad UX
  • 48% of people agreed that use apps to measure brand credibility
  • 11% of app users discard their app owing to bugs and crashes
  • 24% of app users declared that they are bombarded with too many things and are confused in using the app.
  • 16.2 % of app users suggested that they would use many apps if they were not tormented with too many ads as push notifications.
  • More than 50% of users discard apps if it takes too much space.
  • Users prefer apps to load within 4 seconds. If not, they force quit

So it’s evident that your app being successful and not earning much is not fate, it’s a matter of quality. Quality can only be made possible if it’s integrated into the development cycle by qualified QA personnel. At Testscenario we have always ensured the best service by offering quality services for our clients. We have also been a pillar of bug fixes to ensure that our client has a quality product to do business with.

Why do we need Testing in Software Engineering?

  • Software testing help in saving a ton of money. Not just through finding faults/issues. Once deployment is done and the app is out there in the market, fixing issues costs much more than in production and not to mention the reputation and the security. Both once gone will uproot the company. Software testing can ensure that risks are always at a minimum.
  • Do you think you are the only one with the app? like any other niche, there are hundreds and thousands of competitors in the software industry also. To make sure that you are not falling behind, you need to have a quality product. Software testing can make sure that quality is maintained not just with the product but with the processes too
  • Data breaches are happening at an alarming rate. It’s not just always about the money. Reputation is something that can only be earned after years of hard work and good services. One breach could destroy all that. Through testing, testers can mimic all the possible attack patterns and find out the loose ends of your software/network system.
  • If you are a software/app development company you can use software testing as a validation process to show that what you have made is of utmost quality
  • QA brings peace! All those pandemonium-like situations once the bugs come up after deployment can be avoided to an extent by software testing.

We hope that you got a concise idea now about the benefits of testing software

Software Testing Process or Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC)

Requirement Gathering

You need to have a proper requirement to set a goal and to get a direction when it comes to software development.

Based on the software SRS (software requirements specification) document you can set your QA goals, time frame, and types of testing required for the software. Based on

what has been gathered in a project testing scope must be created for timely validation.

However, for instance, if you have to test a legacy system with no or little documentation you need to do these practices to go on with the project.

  • Even if there is no SRS (software requirements specification) document you will find the requirement if you look hard
  • Talk to developers, business analysts, as well as the stakeholders of the product,
  • Learn about the work-flow and business flow of the system
  • Ask questions like who is the target audience and how will they use it
  • With a little understanding, explore the system randomly.
  • Often some stakeholders will have unrealistic ideas about the requirement make sure that you are isolating it from the very first.
  • Assign modules to testers who are experienced in testing them
  • Identify areas in the software based on risk and test them with priority
  • Pair testing (testing the same module by different testers), monkey testing ( testing randomly without any knowledge about the system), etc. can also be adopted.

Test Planning/Test Strategy

Test plan and test strategy are they alike? The answer is somewhat but not alike. In simple terms, a test strategy is devised at an organizational level and on the other hand, a test plan is prepared by the Senior/Lead QA of the testing team.

Here are other differences in a test plan and test strategy

Test Plan Test Strategy
Derived from SRS document High-level document
Contains details about the scope of testing and different activities performed in testing Explains how testing will be carried out
Set on project-level Set on an organizational level
Details about testing will be included in the test plan Used to devise high-level techniques that will be used in testing
Can be changed Cannot be changed
Major components of test plan includes features to be tested, test case id, test techniques, responsibilities, testing tasks, test deliverables, features pass or fail criteria, and schedule, etc Components of test strategy includes client communication strategy, test processes, documentation formats, objectives and scope, team reporting structure, etc.

How to write a Test Plan Document?

  • There must be a crisp intro that contains a general description of the project
  • List of documents that needs to be there for the project
  • An objective like how what, and why of testing should be defined
  • Must have Entry and Exit criteria
  • At many points tests have to be stopped and resumed. That has to be defined as well
  • System acceptance criteria
  • Bug life cycle including management process and flow
  • Roles and responsibilities of the team
  • Different milestones and deliverables that need to be achieved
  • Risks and dependencies
  • Complete details about the resources and they must be open to modification
  • Outline of the goal and parameters that will be used to measure success and failure of the project

How to form a Test Strategy?

Test strategy will be formed by considering these factors

  • What is going to be tested
  • Who will test the software
  • How the testing process will take place
  • When will testing start and when will it end
  • Underlying risks in the project

Sections of Test Strategy

  • Scope and overview
  • What kind of approach will be followed
  • About the test environment
  • Types of tools used in the project
  • Release control
  • Risk analysis and mitigation techniques
  • Review and approvals

Test Analysis and Design

Once the sufficient data is acquired for creating test cases, general test objectives will be converted to test conditions and test cases through the test analysis process

Test analysis can be done in parallel and can be done as an iteration to the test design.

On the other hand, test design is a component of testing that should be verified with appropriate test cases.

Test design helps in determining what needs to be tested with an elaborated step-wise description.

Tasks involved in Test Analysis and Design

  • Reviewing the basic test artifacts such as requirement, the integrity of the software, basic risk analysis, interface specification, architecture, etc.
  • Testability evaluation will take place in part
  • Identification and prioritization of test cases
  • Identifying necessary test data and filtering those which are not needed
  • Design test environment and identify the infrastructure required for testing
  • Between test basis and test cases design bi-directional traceability

Test Case Preparation

Test cases document will have steps to verify or validate all or required attributes of the software.

The objective of Test Cases

  • Validate various attributes of the software
  • To guide testers through testing related activities
  • To tag the bugs and isolate and to get an idea about what happened where
  • To store it as a blueprint for future testing
  • To reveal usability issues
  • New addition to the team can easily pick up

How to write good Test Cases?

  • Your test case primarily should have these things: Test case id, Test case(unit to test), Preconditions, Input test data, Priority, Steps to be executed, Expected result, Actual result, Pass/Fail, Comments
  • It should be transparent, clear and crisp so that anyone could understand it
  • Avoid bug repetition
  • Isolate the bugs that resurfaces rarely for future use
  • Keep the test steps at minimum to avoid confusion
  • 100% coverage is not possible. Focus on as much as you can
  • Make sure that you are creating test cases that are maintenance-friendly and reusable

Test Execution

Once the test cases are written, they will be distributed among the sprint members for review. After receiving inputs from the team member ( devs, BAs, stakeholders, and QA team) test cases will be again modified to reach the final version.

Executing these test cases is actually testing and Tests are often run in a local environment and updated to the report sheet.

  • Based on risk, the test suite will be executed for a cycle
  • Test cases will be assigned to particular testers for execution
  • Tests will be executed, bugs will be reported, test status will be measured continuously
  • If there are any blocking issues must be cleared
  • Test reports and timely adjustments must be done
  • Every test cycle findings must be reported

Test Execution Guidelines

  • The build has to be ready for testing
  • Test environment and dev pipeline must be isolated, however, bug report pushed into the pipeline must not interfere with the chartered coding activities
  • There must be a test lead throughout. At the test execution phase, the team must have adequate members or will have maximum capacity
  • Multiple test cycles need to be there to detect blockage in the initial cycles
  • Execution phase consists of Test script maintenance + Executing the Test scripts + Reporting
  • Perform Test Readiness Review (TRR) to ease up the test execution phase
  • Smoke and sanity tests have to take place after TRR
  • Once the build is ready to be tested perform exploratory testing to trace out critical defects

Create Bug Report

What’s a bug report? The bug report contains an outline of what’s wrong with the software. It also will tell you how far you are from the initial design phase. The bug report lists out errors in the build and ways to address the issue.

Let’s have a look at an ideal bug report

Assigned to Test ID Test Suite Bug ID Planned date Actual date Estimated effort Actual effort Comment

Best practices for Bug Reporting

  • Developers primarily will be looking for issues along with evidence to support the claim and steps to recreate the issue
  • Even if there are two different ways to recreate an issue make sure that you mentioned the one you used
  • Give precise and creative titles to the issues
  • Do not use unclear pronouns
  • Prioritize the bugs
  • Mention the environment that the bugs were found

Types of Testing in Software Testing

Manual Testing

As the name suggests manual testing is all about testing the software manually without the use of a designated tool. You are just manually exploring the software with or without the knowledge of it.

Manual testing can be further categorized into white, black, and grey based on the approach

White box testing: Usually executed by people who have coding knowledge. The person who is performing the test wil has an in-depth idea about the architecture of the software.

Black box testing: Black box testing is usually performed to verify the functionality of the software without having much knowledge about the software. Code and paths must be visible in this type of testing

Grey box Testing: It’s a combination of black and white box testing used to find out context-specific related errors in the web system. Grey box testing gives the power of testing the software UI as well as the internal structure.

Functional Testing

Unit testing: Unit testing is basically done to bring quality into the coding of the software. If coding has quality most of the bugs can be avoided in the dev stage itself.

Integration testing: Integration testing is mostly done when there is a new enhancement or to look at the current progress of the SDLC. Modules of the software will be tested in a single or as a group to know the current status.

System Testing: System testing is done to find out whether the end-to-end specification of the software meets the requirement.

Non-Functional Testing

Performance testing: Performance bottlenecks of the software can be easily evaluated using performance testing. You can also see how the system behaves in various adverse and favorable conditions.

Performance testing can be further divided into

Load testing: system behavior when it’s subject to more than maximum load capacity can be found out by load testing

Stress testing: The software system is subjected to maximum load and it’s sustained to observe the behavior of the system.

Endurance Testing/soak testing: A certain load amount is chosen based on requirement and the load is then sustained to see how the system behaves

Scalability testing: Based on various data loads the system must be able to adjust itself and this trait can only be found out through scalability testing

Volume testing: Volume testing is performed to find out the memory handling capacity of the system by flooding it with a huge volume of data

Usability Testing: Ease of using the software can be measured using the process.

Compatibility testing: The software you have created must work uniformly across various platforms such as Android, iOS, Windows, etc and devices. To ensure that so you can use compatibility testing

What is test Automation in Software Testing?

Imagine that you have a commercial-grade application. To test the software fully you need 1000-3000 test cases. Executing them manually can be a daunting and painstaking task. That’s the situation where automation kicks in

Through automated software testing you can automate the test cases that are repetitive in nature.

What types of Tests can be Automated?

  • Unit Testing
  • GUI Testing
  • API Testing
  • Performance / Load Testing

What are the top Test Automation Tools?

  • Selenium
  • Katalon studio
  • Appium
  • Micro Focus Unified Functional Testing
  • Tricentis Tosca
  • Telerik Test Studio
  • Cucumber
  • Watir Project
  • Eggplant Functional
  • Testing Anywhere
  • IBM Rational Performance Tester

Software Testing Trends 2022

  • Agile and DevOps practices are largely adapted by companies nowadays. Both have brought a defined structure to SDLC
  • There are many codeless test automation tools at present to reduce coding-related activities in testing to save time.
  • IoT systems are gaining prominence among the public. Since an array of systems is involved in IoT systems including cloud architecture their testing requires new techniques and the software testing industry is slowly adapting to it
  • Blockchain industry is now worth billions of dollars. Testing them is a need of time as they are interacting in an environment that’s buzzing with hackers. Since blockchain technology is very new, testing them requires new techniques and testers with new skillsets.
  • Data has now godly powers! Without data, the world would standstill. Handling data requires a perfect system that’s secure and scalable. Big data testing is a testing technique that’s used to test all the systems related to the technology
  • Ai and machine learning-based tools are getting famous nowadays. For instance, Functionize is an AI-based test automation tool that can ease off the automation to a great extent.
  • Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is slowly keeping its foothold in the software testing industry. With the intervention of RPA, apart from repetitive testing tasks, other activities of testing do not require target system dependency and can be automated as well. The biggest benefit of RPA is that operating it does not require high coding skills.

Final Note…

Software testing is not just about a person going through the software randomly. QA is an intricate process and requires experienced team to perform. At present quality has of utmost importance and QA is adopted everywhere in the software industry.

At Testscenario can test your application both web and mobile or incorporate automation into your dev pipeline so that you will get a robust end product. Talk to us for more details.

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