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Software Development February 20, 2023

A Complete Guide on: Testing and Software Testing Life Cycle

Written by Mahipalsinh Rana

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Testing is the process of examining a product, system, or component with the aim of identifying flaws, confirming that it complies with the requirements and specifications, and figuring out whether it is appropriate for the intended use. 

Software, hardware, and processes are only a few of the components of a product that can be tested.

The goal of testing is to identify any issues or defects in the product, so that they can be fixed before the product is released to the public or to its intended users. This enhances the product’s dependability and functionality by ensuring that it is of good quality and performs as planned. 

Testing can be done manually or automatically, and it can employ a variety of techniques-Unit Testing, Regression Testing, Integration Testing, System Testing.

Importance of Testing in SDLC:

One cannot overestimate the significance of testing in the software development life cycle (SDLC), before software is made available to the general public or its intended users.

Testing is essential for guaranteeing its quality and dependability and assists in identifying and resolving any problems. 

Testing 

Enhancing Quality: Testing makes that the program works as expected and that it complies with all requirements and specifications. By lowering the quantity of faults and flaws and raising the reliability of the software, this contributes to its overall quality improvement.

Early Defect Identification: Testing aids in the early detection of faults in the SDLC, when fixing them is simpler and less expensive. Thus, the possibility of expensive and time-consuming rework later on in the development process is diminished.

Confirming Requirements: Testing helps to confirm that the software meets the requirements and specifications, and that it has been developed as intended. This helps to ensure that the software meets the needs and expectations of its intended users.

Improving User Satisfaction: Testing contributes to increasing user satisfaction and trust in the program by making sure that it is of good quality and performs as intended.

Reducing Risks: Testing helps to identify potential risks associated with the software, such as security vulnerabilities, performance issues, and compatibility problems. This allows for those risks to be addressed and mitigated, reducing the risk of failure or negative impact to the business. 

Example:

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Take a software development project for a fresh e-commerce website, for instance. The specifications state that the website must have the capacity to handle high volumes of traffic, a secure checkout process, and compatibility with a variety of browsers and devices. Unit testing, integration testing, system testing, and performance testing are just a few of the testing techniques used during the SDLC. 

Defects are found and rectified, requirements are verified, and performance and security issues are handled through testing. User acceptance testing is carried out before to the website’s launch to make sure it satisfies end users’ expectations and needs.

By thoroughly testing the website, it is ensured that it is of good quality and operates as intended, increasing customer pleasure and lowering the possibility of failure or other detrimental effects on the company.  

What Is the Software Testing Life Cycle?

The series of transformations an entity experiences as it transitions from one form to another is referred to as a life cycle. From beginning to end, many distinct and concrete entities undergo a number of modifications. The software is considered an entity when discussing the life cycle of software testing. The process of carrying out various tasks while testing is known as the software testing life cycle.

Among these tasks is determining if the software generated complies with certain specifications. Testers collaborate with the development team to address any product flaws. In some instances, they need to get in touch with the stakeholder to learn more about various product specifications. Another crucial step in the STLC is product validation and verification.

SDLC v/s STLC

The SDLC manages a product’s whole lifecycle from its inception to its finished state. Testing is one of the most significant phases of the SDLC. A step in the SDLC is software testing. The STLC is the part’s own life cycle. What makes SDLC distinct from STLC, then?

SDLC

  • Main Focus to Create and develop a good Quality Software.
  • Parent Process
  • Recognizing consumer needs and creating a solution that benefits users
  • The SDLC’s phases are finished prior to testing
  •  The ultimate objective is to make a high-quality product available for users.

STLC

  • Main Focus to Testing a Product or System and Verify that Product as expected.
  • Child Process of SDLC.
  •  Recognizing development needs and making sure the product performs as expected
  •  STLC phases begin following the conclusion of SDLC phases.
  • The ultimate goal is to identify product flaws and notify the development team so they can remedy them.

These are the primary distinctions between the SDLC and STLC. Now let’s examine STLC in more detail.

Phases of Software Test Life Cycle:

To ensure the correctness and precision of the final product, each software or application module must be validated. Given that software testing is a complex process, testers conduct it in the following stages:

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1. Requirement Analysis

2. Test Planning

3. Designing and Development of Test Cases

4. Test Environment Setup

5. Test Execution

6. Test Closure

The objectives and outcomes for each phase of the STLC are distinct. The beginning, running, and finishing of the testing process are all included.

Let’s examine each stage of the software testing life cycle in greater depth using an example.

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Think about a bank’s software development project. The software must support account transfers, account balance viewing, and deposit and withdrawal operations, among other functions.

1.Requirement Analysis

The first stage of the testing process and a crucial one in ensuring that the software satisfies the expectations of the stakeholders is the requirements analysis phase of the Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC). Gathering, analyzing, and comprehending the software requirements are the goals of this phase.

The steps in the requirements analysis process are as follows:

1.Requirements Collecting: The testing team collaborates with the stakeholders to collect both functional and non-functional requirements for the program. This could entail holding meetings, analyzing the documentation, or conducting interviews.

2.Requirements Analysis: To find any ambiguities, inconsistencies, or missing details in the requirements acquired during the Requirements Gathering phase, the testing team evaluates the requirements.

3. Documentation of Requirements: The testing group records all of the software’s requirements, including any clarifications or changes made during the Requirements Analysis stage.

4.Requirements Review: To make sure the requirements documentation appropriately reflects the demands of the stakeholders, the testing team reviews the requirements documents with them.

5.Requirements approval: The testing team receives stakeholders’ permission for the requirements paperwork, demonstrating that the requirements have been thoroughly explained and accepted.

For Banking Project Example, The testing team would go over these criteria during the Requirements Analysis stage of the STLC to have a clear grasp of what the software is expected to achieve. Then they would decide what needs to be tested, such as carrying out account transfers with different amounts, examining account balances for various account kinds, and making deposits and withdrawals with various amounts.

The testing team would then decide which requirements would be tested and which will not be tested in order to establish the scope of testing. For instance, they might decide to test account transfers with sums larger than $10,000 but not with quantities lower than $10,000.

The testing team would next produce a test plan that specifies the strategy, tools, and timetable for testing. The test cases, test circumstances, and test data identified in the earlier processes would all be included in the test plan.

2. Test Planning

An essential element in the testing process is developing a plan for testing the software during the Test Planning phase of the Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC). This phase’s goal is to make sure that testing is conducted methodically and effectively and that the essential tools are available to assist the testing procedure.

The phases of test planning include the following steps:

1.Review Test Requirements: To make sure that all relevant tests have been discovered, the testing team goes over the test requirements specified in the requirements analysis phase.

2.Define Test Objectives: The testing team identifies the testing’s goals, such as finding bugs, confirming the software’s functionality, and gauging performance.

3.Determine Test Strategies: The testing team decides which testing approaches, such as performance testing, automated testing, and manual testing, will be employed.

4.Establish Test Environment: The testing team decides the hardware, software, and network settings that will be used in the test environment.

5.Allocate Resources: To support the testing process, the testing team allots the necessary resources, including people, hardware, and software.

6.Testing Schedule: The testing team develops a testing schedule that specifies the beginning and ending times as well as the approximate length of each test. The testing team puts together a test plan that specifies the strategy, materials, and timetable for testing. The test objectives, tactics, environment, resource allocation, and timetable should all be included in the test plan.

For a Banking Project Example: The testing team would go over the test requirements found in the requirements analysis phase of the STLC during the test planning phase to make sure that all necessary tests had been found. Following that, they would specify the testing’s goals, which might include gauging performance and confirming the software’s operation.

The testing team would then decide which testing techniques, such manual testing and automated testing, will be used. They would also choose the hardware, software, and network configurations for the test environment that will be used for testing.

In order to support the testing procedure, the testing team would allocate the appropriate resources, such as staff and hardware. Additionally, they would make a testing schedule with start and end dates as well as an expected time for each test.

The testing team would next produce a test plan that specifies the strategy, tools, and timetable for testing. The test objectives, tactics, environment, resource allocation, and timetable would all be included in the test plan.

3. Design and Development of Testing Cases

The STLC’s Test Case Design and Development phase is a crucial stage in the testing process that entails developing test cases and test scripts to verify the software requirements. Making ensuring that the program is adequately tested and that any potential flaws are found is the goal of this step.

The phases of test case designing and development include the following steps:

1.Review Test Requirements: The testing team goes over the test requirements found during the requirements analysis process to make sure all necessary tests have been found.

2.Design Test Cases: Based on the requirements, the testing team creates test cases using methods like boundary value analysis and equivalence partitioning. The test cases should contain the expected outcomes, test data, and test conditions.

3.Create Test Scripts: The testing team creates test scripts in order to automate the testing procedure as needed. In order to reduce the amount of manual testing necessary, the test scripts should be created in a form that is simple to update and maintain.

4.Examine and Approve Test Cases: The testing team examines the test cases and test scripts to make sure they are comprehensive, correct, and match the testing’s goals. Before testing start, the stakeholders’ approval of the test cases and test scripts is required.

5.Store Test Cases: The testing team stores the test cases and test scripts in a repository, such as a test management tool, for easy access and reference during the testing process.

For Banking Project Example, The testing team would examine the test requirements identified in the Requirements Analysis phase of the STLC during the Test Case Designing and Development phase to make sure that all essential tests have been found. They would then use methods like boundary value analysis and equivalence partitioning to create test cases based on the requirements.

If necessary, the testing team would subsequently create test scripts to automate the testing procedure. The test scripts would be created to reduce the need for manual testing.

To verify that the test cases and test scripts are correct, comprehensive, and meet the testing objectives, the testing team would examine and approve them. The stakeholders would approve the test cases and test scripts.

4. Test Environment Setup

An essential stage in the testing process is setting up the test environment for testing during the Test Environment Setup phase of the Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC). This phase’s goal is to make sure the test environment is properly set up and that all required resources are available to support the testing procedure.

The Test Environment Setup phase involves the actions listed below:

1.Define Test Environment: The testing team identifies the hardware, software, and network configurations that will be used in the test environment.

2.Install and Configure Software: To make sure the software is set up properly for testing, the testing team installs and configures it in the test environment.

3.Hardware Installation and Configuration: The testing team installs and sets up the hardware in the test environment, making sure it is set up properly for testing.

4.Create Test Data: The testing team creates the test conditions and test data that will be used throughout testing.

5.Configure Test Tools: The test team sets up the test tools that will be utilized, including test management, performance, and automated testing tools.

6.Verify Test Environment: The testing team checks the test environment to confirm that it is set up properly and that all required resources are available to support the testing procedure.

For Banking Project Example, The testing team would define the test environment that will be used for testing, including the hardware, software, and network configurations, during the Test Environment Setup phase of the STLC. The program would next be installed and configured in the test environment, making sure it was set up properly for testing.

The gear would be installed and set up by the testing team in the test environment, making sure everything is prepared for testing. Additionally, they would put up the test circumstances and test data that will be used for testing.

The testing team will set up the test tools, including test management and automated testing tools, that will be utilized for testing. Last but not least, they would check the test environment to make sure it is set up properly and that all required resources are available to support the testing process.

5.Test Execution

An essential element in the testing process is the Test Execution phase of the Program Testing Life Cycle (STLC), which involves running the test cases and test scripts to verify the software requirements. This phase’s goal is to find any flaws or problems in the program and make sure it complies with the requirements laid down in the Requirements Analysis phase.

The steps in the test execution phase are as follows:

1.Test Environment Setup: The testing team sets up the test environment, making sure that all required resources are available.

2.Test Case Execution: The testing team puts the test cases and test scripts that were created and refined during earlier rounds of the STLC to use.

3.Record Test Results: The testing team keeps a record of the outcomes of the test cases and test scripts, as well as any flaws or problems found during testing.

4.Report Faults: The testing team communicates with the development team to resolve any problems or defects that they find during testing.

5.Retest Correctly: To confirm that any defects that the development team has rectified have been done so, the testing team retests them.

6.Update Test Cases: The testing team makes any necessary revisions to the test scripts and test cases to reflect any modifications made during the testing procedure.

For a Banking Project Example, The testing team would set up the test environment and make sure that all essential resources were available during the Test Execution phase of the STLC. The test cases and test scripts that were created and developed during earlier phases of the STLC would subsequently be put to use.

The findings of the test cases and test scripts, as well as any flaws or problems found during testing, would be recorded by the testing team. The testing team would report any flaws or problems they found during testing and collaborate with the development team to find solutions. The testing team would retest the flaws to make sure they had been correctly fixed after the development team had fixed them.

6. Test Closure

The last stage of the testing process is called Test Closure in the Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC). This phase’s goals are to codify the testing process’ conclusion and to record the testing effort’s outcomes.

The Test Closure process involves the following steps:

1.Test Execution phase: The testing team completes the test execution phase by finalizing the test results, including any retest results that were carried out.

2.Test Results: The testing team records the test results, including any flaws or problems found during the testing.

3.Review Test Findings: To make sure that all test results are accurate and comprehensive, the testing team discusses the test results with the development team and other stakeholders.

4.Obtain Consent: In order to conclude the testing process, the testing team must receive consent from the stakeholders.

5.Test Artifact Archiving: The testing team maintains a database of all test artifacts, such as test cases, test scripts, test results, and any other documents associated with the testing procedure.

6.Feedback: The testing team gives the development team and other stakeholders feedback, along with suggestions for making the testing process better.

For Banking Project Example, The testing team would finalize all test results, including those of any retests conducted during the Test Execution phase, during the Test Closure phase of the STLC. Any flaws or problems found during testing would be included in the test results documentation.

To guarantee that the test findings are accurate and comprehensive, the testing team would evaluate the test results with the development team and other stakeholders. The stakeholders would then provide their consent for them to wrap up the testing process.

All test artifacts, such as test cases, test scripts, test results, and other documentation pertaining to the testing procedure, would be archived by the testing team. In addition, they would make suggestions for how to improve the project to the development team and other stakeholders, including recommendations for improving the testing process.

Conclusion

Testing is crucial to the success of software applications and is a crucial part of the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). A thorough framework for testing is offered by the Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC), which guarantees correctness and consistency throughout the testing process. Software testing assists in locating mistakes or flaws, lowers the possibility of problems influencing software quality, and ultimately assists in ensuring that software satisfies stakeholder expectations.

 

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