How to Test Your Software Properly?

by Carson
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software testing

Suppose you have designed and written an app and want to release it to the market. However, as any programmer knows, if it contains numerous or apparent bugs, no one is going to give good reviews and you would not be able to earn profit from it. It can even harm the reputation of your company. Therefore, today we will get into how to test software correctly so that you can isolate and fix errors.

Table of Contents

Here’s a rule of thumb: Testing is not about looking at your program to find bugs. It is about actually using your program! Here are 8 essential types of testing that you should carry out when writing apps or web apps.

  1. Functional testing
    1. Unit testing
    2. Integration testing
    3. Acceptance testing
    4. Regression testing
  2. Non-functional testing
    1. Security testing
    2. Performance testing
    3. Compatibility testing
    4. Usability testing

Functional Testing

As the name suggests, functional testing checks whether all functionalities of the software do not contain bugs. The 4 types of functional testing have already been listed in the table of contents above, and we will explain them in this article.

1. Unit Testing

This type of test, unit testing, examines one functionality at a time. For instance, if you are writing a debugger, you will have to check whether it parses a program correctly. After that, you can see if the program runs the correct instructions according to the structure of the input program, and that it will include error handling code so that it can respond to conditions that will produce a fatal runtime error, and display a message after that.

This type of testing helps catch most bugs that exist in the program. However, you may still not know whether all the components combined will cause your app to make mistakes, so you still have to conduct more testing. You should conduct these test while the program is being written to locate and fix the bugs more easily.

2. Integration Testing

Integration testing checks the connectivity of modules for errors. For instance, if there is a bug between how a component and another one are connected, unit testing will not find out about it, but integration testing will. This tests the entire application. As a result, most functional bugs will be discovered at this point.

3. Acceptance Testing
An illustration showing the difference between unit testing and integration testing

If all functions of the application is working as intended, this doesn’t imply that it is ready for release. Therefore, acceptance testing needs to be done, in which an app is examined to see if it meets various standards that make sure that profit is maximized and legal issues are avoided. If not, the app is not ready for release, and developers need to fix relevant issues.

4. Regression Testing

After fixing a bug, it’s crucial to test the entire system. This is because code changes might affect seemingly unrelated parts of the program in subtle ways that may render some other functionalities non-functional. This phenomenon might seem unnecessary and impossible, but sometimes you might find another bug when you conduct testing again.

Non-functional Testing

While you should expect some bugs to appear inside the functionality of a program the first time you type it out, there could be some potentially severe flaws outside the functionalities of the system. Therefore, let’s look at how non-functional aspects of the program should be tested in this section.

1. Security Testing

Developers should be confident that their program satisfies security standards. This applies to both the frontend and the backend, as with all other tests. It ensures you protect customers’ data and prevent detrimental data loss . The procedures should include:

  • Making sure that information is shared according to the privacy policy and the terms of service documents.
  • Enforcing lower limits of password length and banning common passwords to protect customers from brute-force attacks.
  • Using encrypted channels to send any information to the server.
  • Avoiding displaying sensitive information in error messages using error handling.
  • Identifying and fixing any security vulnerabilities by attempting to invade a replica of your systems, even after a program is online.
  • Making sure that backups are automatically created on a regular basis
  • And much more

2. Performance Testing

For commercial success of an application, speed and performance are critical. Therefore, you must ensure that the application is optimized for speed and looks as fast as possible. Though you should probably detect obvious optimizations at the testing phase, you should still seek improvements and release patches after it is publicly available.

In addition to that, stress testing is also essential. It checks how the software behaves when under an extreme amount of load (i.e., when almost all system resources are used up). Ideally, the interface will still respond to inputs quickly, and the user experience will be relatively smooth even when errors occur.

3. Compatibility Testing

Ideally, you should be testing things on multiple operating systems for native apps or multiple browsers for web apps. Some functions that work on one interface might not work on another. If something is breaking in other interfaces, try searching for alternatives targeted to that interface. Keep in mind that you might need to rewrite the entire application from scratch to suit a particular operating system after releasing a version compatible with another OS. However, this drastic compatibility fix does not happen with web apps, where all browsers use HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

4. Usability Testing

Usability is also key to being able to earn profit from an application. Therefore, your user interface must be optimized so that new users can fully understand how the application is used and how to access its functions. Specifically, you should ensure that:

  • Documentation is created for your software, and its content matches how functions are accessed.
  • The application uses easy-to-understand words and icons to make sure a user understands the idea immediately after the application has sent a message.
  • The app is easily usable on any screen configuration.
  • Users should not be required to do unnecessary action to access some features (like having to zoom out because the content is wider than the screen).
  • The design of the software is simple and not over-complicated.
  • And more

This test is best conducted without prior knowledge of how the application works so that there will not be assumptions about how the user interface functions. That way, more issues that can impact revenue can be reported.

Conclusion

In this article, we explained 8 types of software testing that can be done to ensure that your software is functioning and behaving as expected. If the testing equipment is too expensive to replace or threatens safety if an accident occurs, use simulators in the initial stages of testing instead. For more information, please visit the webpages in the references below.

References and Credits

  1. (2022, April 8). What Is Software Testing? All the Basics You Need to Know. Retrieved April 24, 2022, from https://www.testim.io/blog/software-testing-basics/
  2. (n.d.). How Does Software Testing Work? Retrieved April 24, 2022, from https://www.ibm.com/topics/software-testing
  3. Hamilton, T. (2022, February 25). What is Software Testing? Definition, Basics & Types in Software Engineering. Retrieved April 24, 2022, from https://www.guru99.com/software-testing-introduction-importance.html
  4. (2019, April 30). Acceptance Testing | Software Testing. Retrieved April 24, 2022, from https://www.geeksforgeeks.org/acceptance-testing-software-testing/
  5. Hamilton, T. (2022, February 19). What is STRESS Testing in Software Testing? Tools, Types, Examples. Retrieved April 24, 2022, from https://www.guru99.com/stress-testing-tutorial.html
  6. Patel, H. (2018, October 6). 6 Effective Ways To Improve Your Mobile App User Experience (UX). Retrieved April 24, 2022, from https://elearningindustry.com/improve-your-mobile-app-user-experience-effective-ways

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