Basics of Software Testing and its Different Methods

It is no surprise that today the basics of Software testing has become the most inseparable part of the software development process. The process of development makes the software application improvised and even better. The process has already given an alarm that if there is no software testing during the app development, the performance of the app is not ensured. Now, businesses have reached a maturity space, where they understand the need of software testing as a service and perform it. But since businesses prefer quality at speed, the rise of automation in software testing was very certain. 

Testing not only improves your application quality but also improves test coverage time, boosts the process of development and delivers accurate results. But there is no fixed method of performing testing. In fact, the advancement has reached heights and there are many ways you can use types of software testing for their app development. In this blog, we will be discovering basics of software testing, all the methods of software development testing, why is it important for businesses to test and what benefits will it offer?

1. What is Software Testing?

The process of identifying bugs in a developed product is known as software testing. In software development life cycle,this process determines whether the actual results match the predicted outcomes and assists in the detection of faults, missing requirements, or gaps.Testing is the last phase before a product is released to the market. It entails examining, analyzing, observing, and evaluating several parts of a topic.

There are professional software testers who combine manual and automated testing techniques.The testers communicate the results to the development team after executing the tests. The ultimate goal is to provide a high-quality product to the consumer, which is why software testing is critical.

While many businesses are embracing the importance of software testing with the newer technologies like AI, Machine learning, Blockchain Testing, and other ways of Security Testing. In reality, there are professional software testers who understand the need of Good software that is robust and resilient. You can use a combination of manual testing with automated tools to make the process faster and efficient. After conducting various tests, the testers can report the results to the development team. The end goal is to deliver a quality product to the customer, which is why software testing is so important.

2. What is the Importance of Software Testing?

Many budding enterprises do not consider software testing as an important part of their day to day operations and hence end up with startups failing to test their products. They may claim that their limited budget is the cause for their failure to take such a crucial move. They believe it will have no significant consequences. However, when the product development goes wrong, it would be quite late to understand what happened and how to repair.

To be a top-notch company in the game it is important to establish a strong and positive initial impression among customers. It can only happen when your product must be thoroughly tested for defects. The types of testing are not numbered because there are multiple ways of getting testing done.

Similarly, if we talk about firms who are established, if they want to preserve their clientele and maintain their reputation in the market they have to assure customers with top-grade products. As a result, they must ensure that the end-user receives perfect items by following the software testing process.

We must look at the below mentioned reasons to know why software testing is so important in software development and what benefits it offers.

2.1 Enhancing Security Level

The QA team examines the entire code base, as well as the design, and compares it to the client’s expectations. Security is something that no one can jeopardize. Hence many businesses are considering testing software an inevitable part of their business.. As a result, the testing team always needs to double-check an application’s performance from a security standpoint.

Only when the product delivered is perfect can a company provide value to its customers. To accomplish so, businesses must ensure that users do not encounter any problems while utilizing their product. Making your goods bug-free is the foolproof approach to do it. Before delivering a product, companies must focus on testing apps and fixing any flaws that are discovered during testing.

2.2 Improving Product Quality

You developed software can only bring value to your customers only if the product delivered is bug-free and performing. Also, in such cases if the organization wants to achieve that they have to make sure that users don’t face any issues while using their product. The common way of doing it is by making your product bug-free and of higher quality. One of the most underpinning reasons for why businesses choose product quality is for speed, accuracy and cost. All the investments get low and profit doubles.

2.3 Economical and Efficient

Now that we started off talking about cost, then we must know the economical and efficient ways of doing it. In fact, for any complicated system, design flaws can never be totally eliminated. It’s not because engineers are irresponsible, but because a system’s complexity is insurmountable. It will be difficult to track back errors and correct them if design flaws go unnoticed. Thus, repairing it will become more expensive.

While solving one defect, we may unintentionally introduce another in another module. It is far less expensive to fix defects if they are discovered early in the development process. That is why it is critical to identify flaws early in the software development life cycle.

3. Software Testing Methods

As we know Testing is the most important method of the software development cycle and there are a plethora of methods for testing. Testers will be familiar with these names. Like Unit testing, Functional testing, non-functional testing, automation testing, Agile testing,Acceptance testing, integration testing, regression testing and other subtypes are all examples of software testing. For each type of application problem, there are several sorts of testing. If you are a tester, you might have heard about some and worked on some, but not everyone is aware of all the many forms of testing.

Each form of testing has its own set of characteristics, benefits, and drawbacks. However, I have covered almost every form of software testing that we utilize in our day-to-day testing lives in this post. When we hear of types of software testing, we only have these ones in mind that are mostly nowadays. But when it comes to the traditional way of performing tests, there were basically only three ways of doing it. They are

  • Black-box Testing
  • White-box Testing
  • Grey box Testing

When we thought of software engineering, these were the terms working best in testing. But with time and advancement in technology, the methods have changed. Previously,there was no test automation or other ways of testing to ensure quality assurance of developed applications. Thus, the inducement of these types of testing took place. Let’s get into details on how each one works.

3.1 Black-Box Testing

Black-box testing refers to the process of testing where the tester does not have any prior knowledge of the internal workings of the application. The tester has no understanding of the system architecture and has no access to the source code. During a black-box test, a tester will often interact with the system’s user interface by giving inputs and inspecting outputs without understanding how or where the inputs and outputs came from.

Black box testing is a strong testing approach because it exercises a system end-to-end. In this type of testing a tester can imitate user activity and see if the system delivers it as what expectation is. The design of app development is to satisfy end users and their expectations to obtain an acceptable answer to their requests.

A black box test assesses all essential subsystems along the route, including the user interface/user experience, web server, and application.

Pros of Black Box testing

  • Suitable for bigger projects where knowing the code is not important
  • You can clearly see two different perspectives- the customers and the developers point of view

Cons of Black Box Testing

  • Lack of knowledge can lead to some uninvited errors and disasters
  • The test coverage is unpredictable and hence you cannot apply the software testing basics here.
  • As a Tester, you can only perform limited actions on test scenarios and test cases.

Many professionals use a combination of black box and white box testing. White box testing entails analyzing an application’s source code, architecture, and settings from the inside out. Lets see in the next segment what can white-box testing can offer.

3.2 White-Box Testing

The next type of testing is white-box testing that entails a thorough analysis and examining of the code’s from the grass root level like core logic and structure. Its other names are Glass testing or open-box testing are other names for white-box testing. When a tester works under this method, they know and have complete understanding of the internal workings of the code in order to do white-box testing on an application. The tester must examine the source code to determine which unit/chunk of code is acting abnormally.

In white box testing, testers extensively examine the code and other internal components of the program. They determine all the valid and invalid inputs before comparing the outputs to the intended results and the testing definition. The software tester examines the statements and conditions, as well as the code pathways and data flows, for hidden mistakes or defect-prone components.

Although you can use white-box testing at the unit level, its implication is most common in the integration and regression testing. The approach allows testers to inspect pathways inside units for code flaws and other issues that might prohibit the product from performing as expected. The performance of the app is dependent on strong integration with previously tested code, lowering the likelihood of issues later on.

Pros of White Box testing

  • It quickly optimizes the code error identifying process
  • You can aim for maximum test coverage with this type of software testing

Cons of White Box Testing

  • It is difficult to learn this type of testing as the tools of debugging and analyzing are different and many.
  • There can be times when some portion of code remains untested.

3.3 Grey-Box Testing

Grey-box testing is a method of testing an application with just a rudimentary understanding of its internal workings. The grey-box method is a process of testing that uses a simple black-box methodology to test complicated systems, allowing almost anybody to complete the tests, from developers to testers to end-users.

However, in order to build test cases, an engineer must have a working understanding of the software’s internal structure, which includes documentation on data structures, architecture, and functional requirements. In contrast to black-box testing, where the tester only evaluates the application’s user interface, grey-box testing allows the tester to see design papers.

Penetration testing, end-to-end system testing, and integration testing are all typical uses for grey box testing. Interactive Security Testing tools can also be used to do grey box testing. In these IAST tools, we can use the combination of white box testing to assess static code, and tools used for black box testing when combined in IAST tools. These tools will enable developers to test effectively and apply maximum coverage to its aspects.

Pros of Grey Box testing

  • Identifying vulnerabilities is easier and faster
  • Grey-box testing allows for intelligent testing even for exceptional test scenarios for analysing data kinds, communication protocols, exceptions, and so on.

Cons of Grey Box Testing

  • Since the infrastructure of app is unknown, so the test coverage of codes becomes limited
  • The code coverage is at times partial and hence it can lead to lack of objectified performance during the process.

4. Conclusion

The question of which testing is better, and what basis should be of software testing. The process of testing has come a long way from just black, white and grey type of basic testing to now multitudes of testing like functional, non functional, performance testing, exploratory testing, usability testing, unit testing integration and other ways that we know now. The sole aim from testing is to get a high-performing and error-less application that enhances the software system and adds value to existing processes. These testing types are a boon to businesses to develop all types of applications whether complex or simple.

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Itesh Sharma

Itesh Sharma is core member of Sales Department at TatvaSoft. He has got more than 6 years of experience in handling the task related to Customer Management and Project Management. Apart from his profession he also has keen interest in sharing the insight on different methodologies of software development.

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