Let’s admit it.
We, as human beings, make mistakes all the time.
Some of them are unimportant, which does not cause much harm.
But, on the other hand, some mistakes can be expensive or dangerous.
Therefore, it is of utmost importance to check anything and everything that we produce, since we assume that humans sometimes make mistakes in their work.
All these mistakes that humans make may come from bad assumptions or miscalculations, so it is ideal to check or test our work, because it is more likely to spot the flaws in every work.
Now, in today’s fast growing world, the internet customers want products and software releases with new features as early as possible. And, to meet this customer needs, humans tend to finish working on a software or a mobile app as soon as possible and it is where it may miss out on a bug.
In fact, according to statistics, software errors caused the U.S. economy to lose nearly $60 billion in 2002. Today, that amount is probably closer to $100 billion.
To prevent this to happen, usually software testing is considered as one phase of the development cycle.
Now, there are multiple types of software testing used in software development. Let’s start with Black Box Testing.
Black Box Testing
Since making mistakes is part of our nature, it is important that we take the necessary steps to prevent it to happen.
Usually, when the development of a software is finished, testers perform this software testing method to ensure the application is working as per the specifications.
The Black Box testing is a method of software testing which examines the functionality of an application based on specifications. It is also known as specifications based testing.
In simple words, black box testing is used to test an application without knowing the internal structure of code. Usually, this method of software testing is applied to the entry level of software testing like integration, system, unit, and acceptance testing.
White Box Testing
White box testing is the testing of an application’s internal code and infrastructure. It focuses on strengthening security, improving design and usability, and the flow of inputs and outputs through the application.
The term “white-box” was used because the name symbolizes the ability to see through the software’s outer part into its inner workings.
Likewise, the “black-box” term symbolizes not being able to see the inner workings of an application. In black-box testing, only the end-user experience can be tested.
Unit testing is an entry level of software testing where each units of an application are tested.
The main purpose of unit testing is to validate each individual unit of the application performs as designed. A unit in an application is basically the smallest part, which usually has one or a few inputs and a single output.
This type of testing is usually done by the programmers itself as it requires detailed knowledge of the internal program design and code.
Incremental Integration Testing
This type of software testing is done after unit testing is completed. It is the process of verifying the interactions between the modules and interfaces.
Incremental integration testing ensures that the each unit tested components work well together. Usually, this type of testing method is used in Agile projects where a module is first tested and then integrated with another module.
The main objective of this type of software testing is to get feedback to the developers earlier and to help isolate issues.
For example, if module A and module B worked well together but a failure occurred when module C is added, then it helps developers to indicate where the problem may be.
Integration testing is a software development process in which program units are combined and tested as groups in multiple ways. This type of software testing is also known as Integration and Testing (I&T).
The main purpose of Integration testing is to verify functional, performance and reliability requirements placed on major design items.
In simple words, this level of software testing is to find faults in the interactions between integrated units.
While developing an application, first the individual modules are tested in isolation. Once the modules are unit tested, there are integrated one by one untill all the modules are integrated. This helps to check the combinational behaviour and validate whether the requirements are implemented correctly or not.
However, Integration testing does not happen at the end of development cycle, rather it is conducted simultaneously while developing an application.
In software testing, there must be something that defines what is acceptable behavior and what is not.
Functional testing, as the name goes, is a kind of black box testing that is performed to confirm that the functionality of an application is behaving as expected.
Basically, it is a document that describes what user is permitted to do so that the user can determine the conformance of the application to it.
In functional testing, the application functions are tested by feeding them inputs and examining the output. This type of software testing is used to ensure the requirements of an application are properly satisfied.
In simple terms, the system testing is a process of testing of an integrated software and hardware to verify that the system meets its specified requirements.
System testing is usually done by a team that is independent of the development team in order to measure the quality of an application.
In application development, system testing is performed as the first level of testing where the system is tested as a whole.
End-to-end testing is a software testing type to test whether the flow of an application is behaving as expected from start to finish. In this testing method, the entire application is tested for critical functionalities like interfaces, network, communicating with other systems, database, and other applications.
The main reason for using end-to-end testing method is to determine various dependencies of an application in addition to making sure that the accurate information is communicated between various system components.
Sanity testing is usually performed by the test team for basic tests. Whenever the test team receives a new build of an application, Sanity testing is performed to check whether the bugs reported in previous build are fixed or not.
Sanity testing helps to avoid wasting time and cost involved in software testing if the build is failed. Testers generally reject the build if any failure occurs.
Regression testing is a type of software testing method to verify whether the application which was previously developed and tested is still performing correctly after it enhanced or interfaced with other application.
The purpose of this kind of testing method is to make sure that changes such as feature enhancements or configuration changes have not introduced any new faults.
In a nutshell, it is a method of verification that helps to verify the bugs are fixed and the newly added features have not created any problem in the last working version of an application.
Acceptance testing is usually performed to determine whether the application has met the specified requirements or not.
The reason behind performing this software testing method is to evaluate the application’s compliance with the business requirements and verify if it has met the required criteria in order to deliver to the end users.
This is usually the last step before an application goes live or before the delivery of the application is accepted.
This method is performed either by development company or client, who is buying the application or who has hired development company to create the application.
Load testing method is used to test an application by constantly and steadily increasing the load on the application till it reaches the threshold limit.
Usually, this software testing method helps to identify the maximum operating capacity of an application and to determine which element is causing degradation.
Stress testing is the process of determining the ability of an application to maintain a certain level of performance effectiveness under unfavourable conditions.
During stress testing, the application is monitored after subjecting the application to overload to make sure that the application can sustain the stress.
In simple words, the stress testing is used to test the stability & reliability of the application. This method determines the application on its robustness and error handling under heavy load conditions.
Performance testing method is usually used to perform to determine the performance of the system to verify and validate quality attributes of an application like speed, responsiveness, stability, scalability under different load conditions.
This software testing method can verify that an application meets the specifications claimed by its developer or manufacturer. In simple words, the performance testing helps to determine what needs to fix before going live.
In simple terms, usability testing is used to evaluate how easy an application is to use.
In this software testing method, a small set of end-users are asked to complete tasks, while they’re being observed by a researcher to see where they encounter problem and experience confusion.
If majority of users encounter similar problems in an application, recommendations will be made to overcome the problems.
Installation testing is performed to verify whether the application has been installed with all the necessary components or not, and whether the application is working as expected or not.
It is basically a kind of quality assurance work that focuses on what end-users will need to need to install and set up an application successfully.
Installation testing checks and inspects whether the installed application is working in a proper manner, including readme files, registry keys, support documentation.
In Uninstall testing, the testers check if the application removes the installed directories and files in an appropriate manner. Additionally, this software testing method also make sures that all the important configuration and application related files are removed to its original state.
Recovery testing is a failure that is forced into an application to determine how quickly an application can recover after it has gone through application crash or any other failure.
For example, you’ve developed a mobile application to download music with data network. Now, while the downloading is running and if device go to a place where there is no data network available, the download should be paused and it should continue to download the music from the point it was paused, not from the beginning.
Depending on this, the quality of an application can be defined on the basis of output of recovery testing.
As more and more vital data are stored in the applications and the number of transactions increases day-by-day, proper security testing of applications have become more important.
Security testing, as the name suggests, is a process to identify and reveal flaws in the security mechanisms of an application which protects data and maintain functionality as intended.
This software testing method helps to understand how well the application protects against unauthorized internal access and ensures that database is safe from external attacks.
In simple words, compatibility testing is used to ensure customer satisfaction. It helps to determine whether an application is proficient enough to run in different environments.
However, the compatibility test must be performed on real environment instead of virtual environment.
Comparison testing is process of comparing the contents of databases and files against the actual results. From this, testers usually identify and highlight the differences between the expected and the actual results.
Using this software testing method, test engineers can easily determine the strengths and weaknesses of an application.
Alpha testing is usually performed by in house QA and test engineers and it is the last testing done by the development site after the acceptance testing and before releasing the application for the beta test.
This software testing method involves both black box as well as white box testing and it is conducted in virtual environments.
Beta testing is the last part of an application that goes through before it gets into the hands of your potential users.
The purpose of beta testing is to place an application in the hands of real users to discover any bugs or issues from the end-user’s perspective that you would not want to have in your final version of the application.
How Testing Helps to Improve The Software Quality
Be it a mobile app, software, website, or any other product, we all want to use only good quality products. And, the aim of the software testing is to ensure good quality software.
Good quality means the software should not have any bugs, works well, and does what it needs to do.
Moreover, the software testing is now considered as an essential part of a software development cycle as software bugs could turn out to be expensive and dangerous.
Software testing helps to save money as by performing software testing, a defect in the software can be found earlier, meaning less re-development work and less -re-test work is required which minimizes the implementation cost.
In addition, it is easily possible to find bugs, performance issues, and security holes as early as possible so that the quality of a software is top-notch with the help of software testing methods.
Though, there are certain points that needs to be considered for the software testing part. For example, testing should never be left for the final stages of development. While a final testing of a software as a whole should take place, but other tests on functions, performance, and security needs to be tested. And, for better understanding, you can refer to our outsourcing guide.
But, nevertheless, if you’ve hired an outsourcing development company for your product development, before acceptance of the product, you need to make sure everything works as you specified.