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Software Testing is an investigation conducted to provide stakeholders with information about the quality of the product or service under test. Software testing can also provide an objective, independent view of the software to allow the business to appreciate and understand the risks of software implementation. Test techniques include the process of executing a program or application with the intent of finding software bugs (errors or other defects).
Software testing involves the execution of a software component or system component to evaluate one or more properties of interest. In general, these properties indicate the extent to which the component or system under test :
Meets the requirements that guided its design and development.
Responds correctly to all kinds of inputs.
Performs its functions within an acceptable time, is sufficiently usable.
It can be installed and run in its intended environments, and achieves the general result its stakeholders desire.
As the number of possible tests for even simple software components is practically infinite, all software testing uses some strategy to select tests that are feasible for the available time and resources. As a result, software testing typically (but not exclusively) attempts to execute a program or application with the intent of finding software bugs (errors or other defects). The job of testing is an iterative process as when one bug is fixed, it can illuminate other, deeper bugs, or can even create new ones.
Software testing can provide objective, independent information about the quality of software and risk of its failure to users and/or sponsors.
Software testing can be conducted as soon as executable software (even if partially complete) exists. The overall approach to software development often determines when and how testing is conducted. For example, in a phased process, most testing occurs after system requirements have been defined and then implemented in testable programs. In contrast, under an Agile approach, requirements, programming, and testing are often done concurrently.
Although variations exist between organizations, there is a typical cycle for testing. The sample below is common among organizations employing the Waterfall development model. The same practices are commonly found in other development models, but might not be as clear or explicit.
Testing should begin in the requirements phase of the software development life cycle. During the design phase, testers work to determine what aspects of a design are testable and with what parameters those tests work.
Test strategy, test plan, testbed creation. Since many activities will be carried out during testing, a plan is needed.
Test procedures, test scenarios, test cases, test datasets, test scripts to use in testing software.
Testers execute the software based on the plans and test documents then report any errors found to the development team.
Once testing is completed, testers generate metrics and make final reports on their test effort and whether or not the software tested is ready for release.
On Defect Analysis, is done by the development team usually along with the client, in order to decide what defects should be assigned, fixed, rejected (i.e. found software working properly) or deferred to be dealt with later.
Once a defect has been dealt with by the development team, it is retested by the testing team. AKA Resolution testing.
It is common to have a small test program built of a subset of tests, for each integration of new, modified, or fixed software, in order to ensure that the latest delivery has not ruined anything, and that the software product as a whole is still working correctly.
Once the test meets the exit criteria, the activities such as capturing the key outputs, lessons learned, results, logs, documents related to the project are archived and used as a reference for future projects.