Software Testing: A Brief Guide
To make mistakes is human. No one can dispute this fact because even the biggest perfectionists are bound to make mistakes. And this applies very much to software developers as well. The most experienced developers can end up making mistakes.
The only way to mitigate is to carry out a testing process with strict vigilance and efficiency. The demand for flawless software applications has created such a buzz that every IT organization is now giving more importance to testing compared to earlier.
What is Software Testing?
Software testing is the process of identifying errors, faults, or defects in code and fixing it before a product or application is released in the market. The main purpose of testers and Quality Assurance teams is to ensure that the actual outcome is close to or exactly like the expected one.
Testing is the crucial step in the overall software development process as it ensures that it gives developers the opportunities to analyze where they went wrong and work around it.
While software testing can be carried out manually and through automation, most of the seasoned have resorted to a combination of both methods. Once testing is completed, the development team can collaborate with testers to fix the defects if any are found.
Why is Software Testing Important?
The common consensus around the IT domain earlier was that startups need to skip the testing process to cover their expenses and deliver their products on time. The fact, however, is that startups can never afford to skip a process as important as testing.
It does not necessarily mean established companies can afford to skip it either. Because both startups and established companies stand to lose a lot by skipping QA.
In the case of startups, if their first few products or applications fail at the market due to indifference functionality or performance, they will lose credibility. When it comes to established companies, they too need to maintain their standard of quality to retain their clients and to compete with other companies.
While this underlines the importance of QA in many ways, here are a few more reasons:
QA Improves Product Quality
Any company can obtain customer satisfaction only when the product is defect-free. It is considered a start at the very least. To achieve this, business organizations must ensure that the users do not encounter any issues when they use the product.
This is where QA becomes very crucial. Businesses need to focus on testing their applications appropriately and fixing the bugs that are found in the process. This directly improves the product quality and ensures that user requirements are met.
Security is a critical attribute in a software application. Particularly when users share their personal details on it. We are living in an age where cybercrime slowly rising the charts. And foregoing the testing process is as bad as inviting hackers to steal personal data from your app.
To prevent this eventuality, experts have highly recommended vigorous security testing on every software application. Most of the consumers these days place a larger emphasis on security because they enter so many personal details on applications.
Determines Compatibility with Devices and Platforms
This is very important these days too as there are various types of devices and platforms used by customers around the world. Compatibility testing ensures the app owners are aware of which devices and platforms their app is compatible with.
In case it does meet the market requirements, developers can make a few tweaks and ensure compatibility is achieved wherever it was missing.
How is Software Testing Classified?
There are several types of software testing based on various types of classifications. Here is how the process is vaguely classified:
· Functional Testing
· Non-Functional Testing
Functional testing is carried out to verify whether every function of an application or software is working as expected. Software testers verify this with a set of functional requirements. They mainly focus on understanding application behavior and determining if it is up to the mark.
The different types of functional testing are:
· Unit Testing: Unit testing is a process where the testing team runs tests on individual components in an app or product. The aim here is to ensure that these behave as they should.
· Integration Testing: Integration testing is a process that concerns testing single units or modules in an application by combining them in a group.
· System Testing: QA teams implement test cases to verify if the integrated software components or in simple words, the entire system.
· Acceptance Testing: Here, testers combine with real users to check how the app will potentially be received in the market.
Non-functional testing involves testing certain parameters of an application like reliability, usability, and performance. Here are a few non-functional testing types:
· Performance Testing: Performance testing is carried out to check performance-related attributes like speed, scalability, stability, etc. in an application.
· Security Testing: Testers run several test cases to ensure the data is secure and no cyberattacks can be carried out on the desired application.
· Compatibility Testing: This process is performed to check if the application is compatible with different platforms, devices, networks, etc.
· Usability Testing: To verify how user-friendly the desired software application is and if users can easily understand the functionality and usage patterns.
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