7 Software Testing Principles You Must Know
Software testing is a constantly evolving space, with new methodologies, tools, and approaches getting introduced every now and then. But despite all the transformation, testing teams need to keep a steady focus on maximizing test coverage and abiding by certain principles of software testing.
The Seven Principles of Software Testing
As software products become more complex, testers seek innovative ways to detect bugs. But as they embrace new tools and methods, they must continue to follow some principles.
These principles seek to verify the specification, functionality, and performance of any software under test. They also ensure the software meets the intended business and customer requirements consistently and continuously. Let’s look at the seven principles of software testing:
1. Testing Shows the Presence of Defects
The first principle of software testing states that testing shows the presence of defects. So, what does this mean? The goal of software testing is to identify the presence of defects. However, no testing approach or methodology can ever prove that there are no defects in software.
While continuous testing can help identify weaknesses, it cannot remove them altogether. Even if no defects are found, testing cannot be considered a proof of correctness.
2. Exhaustive Testing Is Not Possible
Exhaustive testing aims to test software for all possible scenarios, paths, and input combinations. The second principle of software testing says that exhaustive testing is impossible. This is because testers cannot possibly cover all test scenarios from a time, cost, and effort perspective.
While they will try to cover as many scenarios as possible, some faults will continue to exist in the software under test. These faults must be ignored as long as they do not impact performance or functionality.
3. Early Testing
Another principle of software testing states that testing must start early in the software development lifecycle. Bugs or defects detected in the early lifecycle phases are less expensive to resolve.
Quicker resolution also helps influence the user experience, ensuring higher satisfaction and loyalty. So, it is advisable to begin the testing process the moment the testing requirements are defined.
4. Defect Clustering
Defect clustering states that in any software product, there are bound to be some modules that contain the maximum number of defects. It is believed that 80% of bugs are found in 20% of modules.
Understanding how, why, or where defect clustering happens is a great way to identify areas of the software that are largely susceptible to defects and flag modules with the biggest risks. Testers can prioritize efforts and focus on resolving the most critical defects first.
5. Pesticide Paradox
Running the same test cases again and again will not result in the detection of new bugs. Over time, they will stop being effective at catching bugs while causing a delay in delivering or deploying software.
Since it is practically impossible to test all possible scenarios, testers must constantly maintain and update their test case design. This is important because the functionality of any software application changes over time. That said, continuous maintenance aids in adapting testing approaches to new changes and discontinuing those that are no longer effective.
6. Testing is Context-Dependent
This principle of software testing asserts that the testing approach depends largely on the context of the software under development. Different types of software demand different testing techniques, tools, and approaches. For instance, testing an AI chatbot will be very different from testing a mobile gaming application.
7. Absence of Errors Fallacy
The last of the software testing principles states that developed software that is 99% bug-free can still be unstable. The absence of errors does not necessarily mean the software meets performance and functionality requirements.
Software testing is not merely finding defects but also checking that the software under test addresses business needs. Instead of trying to eliminate every error, testers should verify if the software follows user requirements.
Why Is It Important to Abide by the Principles of Software Testing?
Software testing is a complex yet critical aspect of software development. Since it demands the time and effort of multiple experts, the chances of error, confusion, and siloed approaches are many.
The principles of software testing standardize the approach to identifying and resolving bugs. Abiding by these principles enables testing teams to:
- Create an effective test strategy: The principles of software testing offer an excellent foundation for creating an effective test strategy. With these principles in mind, testers can build a high-level and comprehensive document that describes the testing approach, from scope and objectives to tools and resources.
- Identify issues in time: When testing teams embrace software testing principles, they stand a better chance of identifying issues in time. By testing early and often and better understanding the context, they can ensure the software meets all intended requirements.
- Increase software’s effectiveness: Abiding by the principles of software testing also helps increase the effectiveness of the software under test. Testers can identify flaws and uncover ways to improve software performance, accuracy, and usability.
Redefine Software Testing with ACCELQ
Achieving optimum test results while conducting software testing without deviating from the goal is crucial. With ACCELQ, you can streamline the testing process with ease. As a cloud-enabled, codeless test automation framework, AI-powered ACCELQ helps conduct quick and effective software testing. Here are some benefits:
- Test automation capabilities pave the way for continuous, comprehensive, and contextual testing.
- Codeless features enable testers to cover multiple testing scenarios and handle real-world complexities in an intuitive and scalable manner.
- Self-healing capabilities resolve issues that arise due to code changes and updates and verify the functionality of the software under test.
- The analytical runtime engine allows testers to adapt to unexpected application changes intelligently and ensure reliable test execution.
- Visual application model fuels automation across the quality lifecycle, enabling testers to enhance test coverage.
Connect with us today to redefine the software testing initiatives and roll out high-quality software faster.
Chaithanya M N
A curious individual who is eager to learn and loves to share her knowledge using simple conversational writing skills. While her calling is technology and reading up on marketing updates, she also finds time to pursue her interests in philosophy, dance and music.