Understanding the Different Types of Testing in Software
Kris Nicolaou, March 10, 2023
The thriving software industry is estimated to reach $812.90 billion by 2027. This rapid growth presents many opportunities for companies using the latest technologies and solutions.
This figure underscores the importance of businesses understanding what type of testing must be done on software products before they release them into the marketplace. Software testing ensures that applications function correctly, securely, and efficiently while meeting customer requirements.
Here you will learn about the different types of software testing done on applications before they are commercially released.
- Software testing is essential in all software products. It ensures that the software performs correctly and meets customer requirements.
- There are two main types of testing software: functional and non-functional. Each type serves a specific purpose and has its own set of challenges.
- Functional testing verifies the application functions correctly and tests for all possible use cases.
- Non-functional testing checks performance criteria like speed, security, usability, scalability, and compatibility.
- Understanding when you should use each testing type and how it will be integrated into an overall software testing strategy is crucial.
- Continuous testing can drastically improve your workflow. It helps to quickly identify and address any issues so that the software gets launched without any problems. This process involves testing throughout the entire development lifecycle and can be used with functional and non-functional tests.
What is software testing?
Software testing is an essential component in the development of any software product. It verifies that the application addresses user requirements and functions correctly. Software testing can be divided into two main categories: functional and non-functional.
Functional testing checks how the program works, whether it produces the correct output when given specific inputs, and whether it meets the stated requirements. This type of testing requires understanding the application’s functionality and associated use cases to ensure that all possible scenarios are tested.
Non-functional testing evaluates performance criteria like speed, security, usability, scalability, and compatibility. It involves assessing the software’s performance under certain conditions and verifying that it can handle the expected load. Non-functional testing is crucial for identifying potential weaknesses in the system that malicious users could exploit.
Functional and non-functional tests are essential for assuring product quality. By understanding the differences between these two types of testing and when to use them, businesses can create a comprehensive software testing strategy. These tests will help ensure their products are of the highest quality before release.
Different Types of Testing in Software
Here are the different software testing methods you can try.
Functional testing or black box testing
Functional or black box testing focuses on a system’s functional requirements and specifications. These tests are concerned with the result of processing and do not develop any system structure assumptions. The tests can be done both manually and automatically. Here are some functional tests you can try with your software.
- Unit testing: This is a form of functional software testing that zeroes on individual units or components of the software. It involves verifying that each unit functions as expected and meets its design specification without defects. Developers typically write unit tests but can also be automated using tools like JUnit, TestNG, and NUnit.
- Integration testing: This software testing method focuses on verifying how different application components interact. It involves combining various units and modules and testing them to ensure they work together as expected. Developers typically write integration tests but can also be automated using tools like TestNG and Selenium.
- System testing: System testing checks the entire system for functionality and performance. It ensures that the application meets its design specifications and user requirements. System tests involve executing a set of predefined scenarios to make sure that the application works as expected under various conditions. System testing also evaluates reliability, scalability, security, and other quality characteristics to ensure the software application is defect-free.
- Regression testing: Regression testing determines whether changes to the source code have introduced new bugs or issues. It involves executing existing tests on the modified version of the application to see if it still works as expected and meets its design specifications without any defects.
- Acceptance testing: This checks whether an application meets the business requirements specified by its users. Acceptance testing typically occurs at the end of the development cycle but can be done throughout the software development process to ensure user requirements are met. Business stakeholders or users usually conduct the tests, and the results determine whether an application is ready for release.
- Exploratory testing: This involves an exploratory, trial-and-error approach to uncovering issues in the codebase. Exploratory testing helps testing teams find undetected problems through standard test cases and automation. Unlike other tests, exploratory tests don’t require prior knowledge or preparation as they rely on testers’ intuition and experience to uncover potential defects.
- Smoke testing: Smoke testing quickly determines an application’s basic functionality. It involves running tests to ensure the essential functions work without significant issues. Smoke tests are typically run at the start of a development cycle or after changes have been made to the codebase to identify significant issues early on. These tests help teams quickly assess whether the system is stable enough for further testing.
- Sanity testing: This form of testing checks if the changes made to an application are functioning correctly. It is done after modifications are made to the codebase, and it is typically used to catch minor bugs before they become more severe. It typically focuses on specific system areas, such as a feature or module. It is designed to verify that the changes have not broken any existing functionality quickly. While sanity tests are usually less comprehensive than other types of software testing, they can help teams save time and money by uncovering issues before they become too costly to fix.
Non-functional testing or white box testing
Non-functional testing techniques or white box testing act differently than functional testing. This method verifies the non-functional requirements and specifications of a system. They are designed to check a system’s readiness using unchecked non-functional parameters during functional testing. Here are examples of non-functional tests you can do with your software.
Performance testing: Performance testing measures the application’s speed, scalability, and stability. It helps teams assess whether their system meets the performance requirements defined by the client or product owner.
It is usually done after an application has been deployed to production and is used to identify any bottlenecks or areas that could be improved. Performance tests are typically done using automated tools, and they help teams identify issues such as slow page loads, high CPU usage, or memory leaks.
Load testing: This performance test helps teams assess how well an application can handle large requests or data. It typically involves simulating real-world user scenarios to uncover high load or traffic issues, such as multiple users accessing the same feature simultaneously.
This can help teams identify any bottlenecks or areas of their system that require optimization. Additionally, load tests can provide insight into the system’s scalability and help teams understand how well it will perform as usage of the application grows.
Stress testing: This is another form of performance testing that helps teams assess the breaking point of their system. It involves simulating extreme user scenarios, such as thousands of concurrent users attempting to access the same feature, in order to uncover any underlying issues with scalability or performance.
This is often done with automated tools and can provide valuable insight into how a system will perform under extreme loads. Also, stress testing can help teams identify areas that require optimization to improve their application’s performance.
Volume testing: This performance test helps teams assess the impact of large amounts of data on an application. It typically involves simulating real-world user scenarios with high requests or data volumes to uncover scalability or performance issues.
This can help teams identify any bottlenecks or areas that require optimization and provide insight into the scalability and stability of their system. Additionally, volume tests can inform you about future product decisions about how well an application will perform as usage grows.
Security testing: This testing technique helps teams identify any vulnerabilities in their system. It typically involves simulating real-world user scenarios and exploring the application for possible security issues, such as data leakage or unauthorized access.
Security testing can help teams identify any unaddressed areas and provide insight into the security of their system. Additionally, security tests can be used to inform product decisions about how secure an application is and how it should be protected against potential threats.
Scalability testing: This is another performance testing technique that helps programmers measure a software application’s ability to grow and support increasing users. It typically involves simulating real-world user scenarios with large numbers of requests to uncover any scalability or performance issues.
This can help development teams identify any bottlenecks or areas that require optimization and provide insight into the scalability of their system. Additionally, scalability tests can be used to inform product decisions about how well an application will handle increased traffic over time.
Accessibility testing: This is a performance test that helps teams evaluate the usability and accessibility of an application for people with disabilities. It typically involves simulating different scenarios to uncover any difficulty or lack of access.
This testing process can help development teams identify potential issues preventing users with disabilities from using the application and provide insight into the user experience. Additionally, accessibility tests can be used to inform product decisions about how an application should accommodate people with disabilities and create a better overall experience for all users.
Usability testing: It is a unique form of performance testing that helps teams evaluate how easy it is for users to use an application. It typically involves simulating real-world scenarios and activities with different users to uncover any difficulty or confusion.
This type of test can help teams identify potential usability issues and provide insight into the user experience. Additionally, usability tests can help with product decisions about how an application should be designed to create a friendlier user interface for all users.
Recovery testing: This form of performance testing helps teams evaluate an app’s ability to recover successfully after experiencing an unexpected event. This type of testing typically involves inducing faults or crashes and verifying that the system can return to its normal state without any issues. Recovery tests provide valuable insight into the reliability and stability of an application, helping teams identify any potential issues before they arise.
Endurance testing: Endurance testing is another form of performance testing that helps teams evaluate how an application behaves over extended periods. It typically involves simulating real-world usage scenarios and activities with different users to uncover any difficulty or instability.
This type of testing can help teams identify potential issues related to long-term use and provide insight into the user experience.
Compatibility testing: Compatibility testing should be included in the test plan to ensure that everything goes well in the future. This type of performance testing helps teams evaluate how well an application runs on different platforms, devices, and operating systems.
This type of testing typically involves simulating real-world usage scenarios with different users to uncover any areas of difficulty or incompatibility. Compatibility tests provide quality assurance and valuable insight into the user experience across different platforms and devices.
Before doing any tests, assessing your project’s scope and complexity is best. Doing so will help you identify the correct type of performance testing for your application. Additionally, it is necessary to have a solid understanding of the available tools and techniques to create an effective performance-testing strategy. With the right combination of tests and tools, teams can be confident that their applications deliver the best possible user experience.
Software Testing Best Practices
Here are some best practices and methodologies you can use during your software development life cycle.
Continuous testing is an essential part of the software development life cycle. It involves continually running tests throughout the process to identify and resolve potential issues as quickly as possible. That includes testing for usability, recovery, endurance, and compatibility across different platforms and devices. Continuous testing helps teams deliver higher-quality applications faster by ensuring that solutions are implemented promptly.
Service virtualization is a tool used by teams during software testing. It allows developers to simulate the behaviour of external systems, such as databases, web services, and API testing, during development and testing. This technique helps teams test their applications more efficiently by eliminating the need to use natural environments or components during testing. Service virtualization also helps teams identify and resolve potential issues before reaching end users.
Test automation feasibility
This is a process of assessing the suitability of automated tests for an application. It involves evaluating the time, cost, and complexity of setting up automated tests. Automated testing can provide teams with faster feedback cycles, improved test coverage, and more accurate results than ad-hoc testing, which can be time-consuming. Additionally, it helps simplify complex or repetitive tasks, allowing teams to focus on more critical issues.
This is the process of managing and controlling system changes. It allows teams to track and control changes in order to ensure that applications remain stable and reliable. Configuration management involves:
- Setting up a baseline of how you can configure the application
- Tracking any changes that occur
- Validating that those changes align with expectations
Configuration management helps teams quickly identify, diagnose, and resolve issues. It ensures that applications remain secure and optimized for all users.
When To Use Manual and Automated Testing
Manual and automated testing are ideal for several use cases such as product usability, security, performance, compatibility, and scalability. However, to make things more efficient, you must know which type of testing you will need for each use case.
With this software testing technique, testers manually execute tests on a software application to uncover bugs, errors, and other issues. It is conducted to verify the quality of the product and its usability for end-users. Manual testing involves extensive analysis of the user interface, non-functional elements such as security and performance, and manual/B testing.
Testers typically do manual testing with the help of test scripts and cases prepared in advance. It requires an experienced tester to understand the requirements, analyze test results, and document defects if they exist. This process also helps a team determine any areas that need improvement before rolling out the application to end users.
This method involves executing tests on an application using software tools, such as automated scripts or test suites. It helps reduce the time and cost associated with manual tests and enables teams to cover more test cases. Automated testing helps identify issues early in development, allowing teams to iterate on their product quickly.
Automated tests can be used to check for system performance, scalability, usability, compatibility, and many other aspects of an application. They also allow teams to run repeatable tests on different platforms and devices without manually configuring each test. Automated tests provide faster feedback, helping teams move rapidly and confidently throughout the development cycle.
Test Your Software With Brain Box Labs
Testing your software is an essential part of the development process. Brain Box Labs can help ensure your applications run smoothly across different platforms, devices, and operating systems. We’ll work with you to assess your project’s scope and complexity to identify the correct type of tests for your application. Our team will also guide you on selecting tools and techniques that fit best into a comprehensive performance testing strategy.
Finally, we offer continuous testing during each process step to identify and resolve potential issues early. With our suite of advanced technology solutions and expertise combined, let us be your partner in delivering high-quality applications faster than ever.
Ready to take your software to the next level? With years of expertise in testing and software development services, Brain Box Labs can cater to your needs. Contact us today, and let’s get started!