Build. Test. Ship. That’s the way it oughta be!
Software testing is crucial to building robust software solutions that not only meet user demands but are also performant and reliable. Software testing involves proactively finding and removing potential problems that could cause user frustration.
This article provides a foundation for understanding software testing concepts and the 7 most common testing approaches.
What is Software Quality Assurance?Software Quality Assurance (SQA), aka software testing, is the process of evaluating a software product and the development process that produced it. It ensures that software meets customer requirements and expectations (features and functions).
SQA is an ongoing activity. It involves all the tasks that ensure a software product is fit for the market. We can break down SQA into three main areas:
Testing: Executing a program or system with the intent of finding errors. This may include functional tests, performance tests, security tests, etc...
Assurance: Refers to everything we do to build trust & confidence in our products or services. This could be in the form of reviews, inspections, and audits.
Quality Planning: All activities related to defining quality requirements for your software solution, even before development begins.
7 Common Software Testing Approaches & MethodsTesting is crucial for software development, which is why at Scimus, a software engineering firm, we have entire teams grounded with core testing concepts, dedicated to QA.
Here are the 7 most common approaches for testing programs:
1. Regression TestingRegression tests ensure that defects or errors in software are not regressed (or reintroduced) during any subsequent changes made to the software.
It ensures that new features have not broken existing functionality and that all parts of the application continue to work as expected.
2. Whitebox TestingIt is a type of software testing that employs techniques from formal logic to improve test coverage. It uses decision tables and dataflow analysis.
White box test cases are based on an understanding of internal program structures including data flow and control flow constructs (such as conditional statements).
This contrasts with black box test cases which do not depend on knowledge of program internals but instead focus.
3. Black Box Testing:Black box tests treat all functions in isolation. Also known as surface-level testing, Black box test cases do not take into account the internal workings of the code, but rather focus on what the software product does externally. What do users experience when they use the application?
4. Functional TestingThe most important type of software development test. Functional tests verify that the software performs its intended functions, such as displaying a particular screen or performing a specific task.
It involves running the application through its various use cases and making sure that it performs as expected. Functional tests can be performed manually or automatically.
5. Load/Stress Testing:Load/Stress tests check for stability, performance, and other aspects related to stress or load. The application is subjected to multiple load scenarios such as high usage, peak usage, peak traffic, etc.
6. Security Testing:Security tests verify that security vulnerabilities have been identified, patched, and tested for proper operation. Security tests are performed against any potential threats such as malicious code, viruses, and other malware that might be found in a system's network environment.
7. Usability TestingUsability tests evaluate how easy it is for users to use your application effectively under conditions that are realistic but not extreme (e.g., normal school work).
Experts perform usability tests by conducting interviews with users in real time.
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3 Ways to Test Software and ApplicationsExcept for usability, the above-discussed tests can be implemented in any of three major ways:
1. Automated testing: The process of testing software without any human involvement. Software test developers write test sets of scripts that will automatically run the code and check if it works as expected.
2. Manual testing: This involves the manual execution of a set of scripts written by developers to test an application or module.
3. Continuous testing: Developers build their own unit tests as well as integration and system tests at regular intervals throughout their project lifecycle.
To ConcludeA product that is not properly tested will fail in the hands of the user.
Efficient Testing of a software project, which is a subset of Quality Assurance, seeks to ensure that all potential problems are anticipated and solved — so the user gets the best experience possible.