In a software business set up, there is a process that involves verifying the quality, correcting any mistakes, and checking the performance capabilities. The entire process is known as software testing. The purpose of software testing is to ensure the features and the functioning of a product operates as anticipated.
The process of software testing can be done either automatically or through the manual. In automatic, software testing is made up of several tools that have distinct functionality. The tools have different codes. On the other hand, manual software testing is done by a skilled software development engineer who ensures that the software operates accordingly.
Importance of Software Testing
- Saves time, money, and other resources
In an organization, software QA testing feature enables the developers to test a product if it will operate as required at an early stage. As a result, software testing guarantees stability and gives developers a room to add other useful features. In the end, the company will save the money it could have used to start the development process again if the product fails to work as anticipated. The testing also improves user experience by ensuring there are no bugs encountered.
- Reduced time for the development process.
The set of tests put in place by the development team reduces the time required to add new features. The tests give developers a precise estimate of the time needed to produce accurate results since the addition of new bugs in minimized. The overall costs of maintenance required are reduced when the tests are put in place.
Forms of Software Testing
There are different forms of software testing, each way having its purpose and performing a given task within the process of software development. Let us go through the different kinds of software testing below:
- Unit Testing
Apparently, the unit testing forms a base for the entire process in software testing. At the unit testing stage, all the input and output checks are done for every single code unit. The strategy used here is standalone code methods. The production function code is executed at unit testing with simulated input. The output from the function is then equated to the anticipated production for the data. If they both match, then it can go to the next stage. If they don’t match, it implies failure. This shows that unit tests are approved strategies for verifying extracted data functions.
- Integration Testing
Integration testing means that the software test approach involves a minimum of two units. In the process of creating a software test, the lines between different groups can transform into integration tests. In most cases, a unit test that is not compatible with third-party code may be formed. In such cases, the integration to the unit will be forged because it won’t be tested.
- End-to-end or Functional Testing
Functional tests include cases that involve a full user-level experience. The tools used in functional testing operates the way a human being works. End-to-end testing is the same as system testing, and all stages involved in the process of software development must be tested to correct any issues that may arise later. In simple terms, functionality testing is used in a complete app in terms of network communication, data interaction, and hardware interaction with the system and other apps.
- Exploratory Testing
Just like the name “Explore” sounds, exploratory testing is a practice where the testers are given a job, and they have to fulfill it using the software that is being tested. When the software is tested for exploration, you can learn more aspects, primarily how your product will be used. During exploratory testing, you can learn something you never knew from the beginning, which, when added, might be of great benefit to the users. The best part about exploratory testing is that it doesn’t require highly skilled personnel. Anybody can take part in the testing process
Software Testing in Continuous Delivery
The purpose of continuous delivery is to deliver completed code tasks automatically through a seamless pipeline after the trial is done. Having a new set-up is advantageous because it allows the developer to keep the already completed codes moving into the continuous delivery pipeline for analysis. At this point, the new codes are then run through some testing levels for evaluation. Should the code pass through testing, then it is merged and deployed to production instantly. However, if the code fails at the test stage, it is rejected by the developer, and correction strategies start right away.
In the well-established software development field, there is a given process used in testing. Different tools are installed via package manager attached to the programming language used on the given project. Such tools are used to implement and develop the testing sets.
Apart from testing implementation tools, there are also development tools and deployment tools. The different sets of tools make it possible to install several test runners to give output data from the test groups. The common activity which takes place here is test coverage, whereby a code coverage tool is used to show how much of the code is well-covered.
The next process after deployment of the successful testing group is working correctly is to integrate the project into the continuous delivery pipeline.
Making Testing part of the Continuous Delivery Pipeline
A robust testing base foundation determines the strength of the continuous delivery pipeline. Building the test foundation starts with manual tests, which include automated solutions.
- Ensure excellent standards at every stage of the pipeline
Anyone involved in the product development process must create a good relationship with the end-users. In every step, the codes used can either improve the customer experience of making it worse. The purpose of the test groups in the continuous delivery cycle is to help come up with high quality and the right codes. For example, at the product development/ design stage, the test group can be used on developing a feature. As much as the test is used to keep the development process moving, it can also be used in the production phase to improve the overall quality.
- Direct the developers to come up with quality features through testing
In traditional testing strategy, they assume that testing is a step on its own and does not require a developer. However, the problem is when the developer is missing; it is hard to understand how the customers will feel; thus, the development team won’t produce quality products at the end. Also, problems with codebase will always arise in the absence of the developer, which will affect quality assurance, and more expenses will be incurred to fix such issues. The traditional testing strategy is disadvantageous because of the costs involved in hiring separate teams to take care of different tasks.
The purpose of continuous delivery, in this case, is to improve developer awareness on how the customers will feel about the product. In continuous delivery, developers are directed to perform test coverage for any features they come up with to produce and deploy better results at the production stage. As they test the features in the process, the developers get a chance to prove the quality of the features they produce.
- Build-in customer feedback
Continuous delivery enhances quick deployment and updates to any software project. The updates give room for instant feedback from customers. The feedback is used to make changes and improve the quality of the next release. In case the customer reports some technical issues, the continuous delivery pipeline suite can be used to trace the reasons for such problems. Remember to become successful, answer customer’s feedbacks on time.
- Create a reliable software testing strategy
It is crucial to consider the users, product, and business approaches when coming up with a software testing strategy. Do an analysis and know the targets of the high-value test.
In real-time, a software project will strive for the best test coverage that will ensure the code performs as expected and that the code does not have bugs. However, this is not possible in the real working business environment due to tight budgets and timelines.
Different types of testing should be implemented according to the kind of software to be delivered. Should the software be of GUI driven app, then high-level end-to-end tests will be considerable.
Below is how an overall approach for GUI-based user apps is made
- Instrument end-to-end tests on all the core user logins, flows, checkout, signup, checkout, among others.
- Instrument unit tests on all sensitive data code operate like monetary transaction tools
- Instrument integration tests for any points of 3rd party integration to ensure data is flowing to the 3rd and any errors are being propagated correctly
How to make Software Testing with Continuous Delivery Better
There are many benefits associated with continuous delivery to the business. First of all, it is cheap because the costs of hiring and running different teams are eliminated. All the tasks involving quality assurance, test engineering, and release management are incorporated into the continuous delivery flow.
Product quality that passes through the continuous delivery pipeline is of high quality. Through continuous delivery, the developers test and see how the product will be used by the targeted audience and make the necessary changes where possible to improve user experience; thus, quality is guaranteed.