What is software testing Definition, basics types
Updated on 17th Nov, 22 55 Views

Definition of Software Testing

Software testing is an integral part of software engineering where the purpose of the introduction of this concept was to validate the build of the proposed software and verify its working according to the software requirement specification(SRS).

SRS describes the specifications of the software, it is expected to work, and its needs during development. This concept of software testing also ensures the quality of the software being developed. 

Let us turn our gaze to the points that we are going to discuss in this article.

Table of Content:

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What is meant by Software Testing?

What is meant by Software Testing

In brief, Software Testing refers to the authentication and affirmation of the to-be-developed software, to check the working of the software before delivery of the final product.

  • Tom Kilbum first introduced the concept of software engineering in 1948 at the time of World War II when the first software was developed.
  • Software testing is a component of software engineering, a branch of computer science where software is created in an organized manner by software engineers.
  • Software is developed on the key principle of software engineering namely designing, developing, maintaining, testing, and evaluating.
  • While working on this whole process a document is maintained, called the SRS document (Software Requirement Specification). Software is developed, validated, and verified based on this document.

Before diving deep into the topic we should know what is the need for software testing, then we will discuss its types and techniques.

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Why is Software Testing needed?

Why is Software Testing needed?

The main reason for which software testing was introduced, is because it gives the quality assurance of the proposed software before the final result is published.

Below mentioned are the points of consideration for why software testing is needed:

  • It detects the weak architectural structure of the software beforehand.
  • It ensures that the to-be-published software is built following the proposed SRS document.
  • Software testing is a component of software engineering, a branch of computer science where software is created in an organized manner by software engineers.
  • Testing helps to check how efficient the software is, and how much optimization is needed to get the desired results.
  • It is also capable of detecting security voids present in the code of the proposed software.
  • It ensures the reliability and high performance of the delivered software.

Now we have a basic understanding of what is software engineering, and why we need Software Testing. Now, let’s discuss the different types of software testing.

Types of Software Testing

Types of Software testing

While learning about software testing, a basic definition is not enough we should have a deeper knowledge of the associated concepts and testing procedures.

Software should be developed in such a way that it covers all the real-life test cases and possible scenarios.

Here are the working principles on which Software Testing is done:

  • Test cases and real-life potential scenarios are met during the testing and changes are proposed accordingly.
  • Possible edge test cases are considered which have the highest probability of error generation.
  • All test cases are pre-planned and well-documented before the test.
  • Testing is performed in small modules or component-wise instead of engaging the whole code at a time.
  • Testing is based on the Pareto rule also known as the 80/20 rule, in this rule, it is considered that 80% of the errors will be generated by 20% of the coded components.

Now we know what are the basic principles on which software is tested, it is the right time to jump into the ocean of Software Testing. Read carefully the different types of software testing.

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Mainly software testing can be divided into categories namely:

  • Manual testing.
    • Unit Testing.
    • Integration Testing.
    • System Testing.
    • User Acceptance Testing.
  • Automation testing.
    • Load testing.
    • Stress testing.
    • Security testing.
    • Volume testing.

Check out the below pointers for a detailed description

  • Manual Testing:
    • In manual testing, no external tools and programming scripts are needed.
    • The developer tests the software from the user’s end manual by acting as a user.
    • In this, any bugs and behavioral changes are noticed while considering all the real-life scenarios and test cases.
    • It comprises unit testing, integration testing, system testing, and user acceptance testing.
    • Types of Manual Testing –
      • Unit Testing: Unit testing refers to the testing of the smallest unit in software known as a unit. It also covers the interrelated units of the software.
      • Integration Testing: In this type of testing a group of unit-tested components are taken together to build a basic program structure and produce the desired result.  It can be further classified into the top-down approach and bottom-up approach.
      • System Testing: Here, testers only consider the inputs and corresponding output, while neglecting the actual internal working of the test system.
      • User Acceptance Testing: Also known as UAT, the end users check the delivered software and give feedback accordingly on whether the delivered product meets all the requirements or not.

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  • Automation Testing:
    • In automation testing, an external programmed script and software are needed for the testing.
    • It is easy to perform, saves time, and can be done repetitively.
    • It is more accurate as compared to manual testing as in manual testing human errors are probable.
    • It consists of load testing, stress testing, security testing, and volume testing.
    • Types of Automation Testing –
      • Load testing – In load testing the application is tested on the proposed load on which it is expected to behave appropriately in the real-world environment.
      • Stress testing – In this type of testing the developed software is loaded with extra to provide stress to the functionalities of the software and then it is tested for its efficiency in the real-world environment.
      • Security testing – Here the security level of the software is tested against malicious attacks and unauthorized access over the internet.
      • Volume testing – It is all about the volume of data to be handled by the to-be-developed software in the real world. It is tested for its reliability.

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Software Testing techniques

  • Black Box Testing:  
    • In this type of approach, the testers don’t have any knowledge about the internal working of the proposed software.
    • They just interact with the developed software and document the tested results.
    • Testers here act like end users and check for the behavior of the application. Both functional and non-functional behaviors are tested.
    • It is also known as closed-box testing.
  • White Box Testing:
    • Here the testers know the internal working of the application which includes the actual code and structure of the application.
    • In this type of testing, particular functions are tested namely data flow, control flow, path flow, conditional flow, etc.
    • White box testing is also known as transparent testing.
  • Grey Box Testing:
    • This approach is a combination of both white-box as well as black-box testing.
    • The main purpose of this type of testing is to cover the errors generated due to inappropriate usage.
    • This type of testing is also known as translucent testing as it covers both types of testing and their application.

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Software Testing Life Cycle

Software Testing Life Cycle.

STLC also known as Software Testing Life Cycle, refers to the different steps involved during the process of Software Testing. It makes sure that the software to be developed met all the requirements of the stakeholders.

Different phases involved in Software Testing Life Cycle are as follows.

Phase 1:

Requirement Gathering – Here requirements of the to-be-developed software are discussed, namely the parameters like quality, needs of clients, and resource allocation.

Phase 2:

Test Case Planning – In this step of STLC, all the test cases are planned and resources are allotted accordingly to the potential test cases.

Phase 3:

Test Case Development phase – Here, in this phase test cases are made based on the planning done in the previous phase and verified by the quality assurance team.

Phase 4:

Testing Environment Set Up: The testing environment is set up in this phase of STLC but this step is independent of the other phases and can be started at any phase of STLC.

Phase 5:

Test Execution: In this execution phase, all the prepared test cases are executed and results are noted.

Phase 6:

Test Closure: It is the last step to be performed in STLC. Here all the gathered results are analyzed and documented.

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Conclusion

Software Testing is a much-needed part of software engineering. Without Software Testing, desired results cannot be met. It can be time-consuming but it helps to save a lot of resources to be invested in the software. With the help of software testing, all the parameters of the desired software can be met.

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