A software program is a collection of instructions that performs a specific task when executed by a computer. Software is of different types like application software, system software, embedded software, firmware, etc.
Software testing is the process of executing a program or system with the intent of finding errors. In simple words, the QA services provided by a software testing company is just an execution of a system that identifies gaps, errors, or missing requirements in contrast to the actual requirements.
Different types of Software testing has different goals to achieve like verifying and validating that software meets or not its business requirements, checking if it satisfies all functional as well as non-functional requirements, finding defects that are not obvious, detecting errors in interfaces between different systems and components in an integrated system and how it behaves under certain circumstances like invalid inputs or unexpected user actions, etc.
Unit testing is a method for testing small, isolated sections of code. Usually, this means a single function or method. This type of testing is done by developers who know exactly how the code should behave. Unit tests ensure that each section of code behaves as expected when used in isolation from the rest of the program.
Integration testing is similar to unit testing, but it tests multiple sections of code at once. For example, integration tests could be used to test both a database and web server together to make sure they communicate as they should. Integration tests are usually done by developers who have a complete understanding of how all parts of the system should interact.
Acceptance testing is done by end-users or customers to make sure that an application meets their requirements and expectations for functionality, usability, and performance. Acceptance tests are often performed during or at the end of the development process by an independent team of testers from outside the development organization.
It is a type of software testing that seeks to uncover new software bugs, or regressions, in existing functional and non-functional areas of a system after changes such as enhancements, patches, or configuration changes, have been made to them.
Regression testing helps determine if a change in one part of the software affects other parts of the software. It is generally done to validate fixes for defects reported during previous test cycle/s. Regression Testing also uncovers any side effects (unintended impacts) caused by code changes.
System testing involves testing the complete system to evaluate the system’s compliance with its specified requirements. System tests are black-box tests that ignore the internal mechanism of a system or component and focus solely on the outputs generated in response to selected inputs and execution conditions.
It is a type of software testing that validates the highest limit of your software application’s performance and/or stability. Stress testing is used to identify the maximum operating capacity of an application as well as any bottlenecks and determine the breaking point.
Stress testing is usually performed by a specialist department within a company, rather than by software testers.
The goal of stress testing is to find out how a system performs beyond its normal working conditions. This helps determine what happens when there are peaks in usage or when a system is pushed to its limits.
The stress test results will help determine whether the system meets expectations, or what needs to be tuned before releasing the product into production.
Smoke testing is a type of software testing that aims at ensuring that the most important functions work. The term “smoke testing” comes from the hardware testing practice of turning on a new piece of hardware for the first time and considering it a success if it does not catch fire and smoke.
Smoke tests are often used to ensure that an application is stable enough to warrant further, more in-depth tests.
Accessibility testing is the process of ensuring that software is usable by people with disabilities (e.g., blind or deaf users). The techniques and tools used in accessibility testing are similar to those used in usability testing, but there are some additional considerations. For example, a blind user might use a screen reader to translate text into audio, so the tester should be sure to use text-to-speech software to test the application from that perspective.
Compatibility testing is the process of ensuring that an application works across different devices, platforms, browsers, and operating systems. Compatibility testing can also include performance issues like load time and memory usage.
Ad-hoc testing is a method where the tester tries to ‘break’ the system by randomly trying the system’s functionality. It is also called Monkey Testing. Ad hoc tests can be performed by any person with basic knowledge about the application under test. The outcome of this test could be either positive or negative (bugs).
In black-box testing, you look at the function of your app, as a user would, without looking at its internal structure at all. You simply look at what it does and check for errors (bugs).
These are the kinds of tests that your users will perform when they use your app – they don’t know or care what’s happening internally; they just want to know that the app works properly.
It is a minimal form of testing that is usually done after regression testing to ensure that the latest code changes have not impacted other functionalities. In other words, it is a subset of regression testing that validates whether the recent changes introduced in the code are working fine or not. It is also called build verification testing and it is done to verify that no new bugs have been introduced in the latest build while fixing an existing bug.
Interactive testing is an approach where the tester and the developer interact with each other to create a test script. The developer writes the test scripts, and the tester suggests further tests to be added. The main advantage of this approach is that it is fast, as creating tests and executing them happen simultaneously.
The problem is that this approach can lead to incorrect assumptions in case of a bug. Since the developer is writing scripts, they might add a feature that makes the software work according to their understanding of it. This can result in a different interpretation of requirements for both parties and cause bugs to go unnoticed.
The second major issue with this approach is that if the developer does not have sufficient knowledge about testing, their scripts might miss crucial bugs or fail to cover important scenarios.
Load testing is a form of performance testing that determines the behavior of your software application under a specific expected load. The purpose of load testing is to determine how much traffic your website can handle without a significant drop in performance.
Load testing is commonly used to predict system behavior and performance under normal and peak conditions. It also helps you determine how many users your application can support at one time, as well as how it behaves when it reaches its maximum capacity. Therefore, load testing helps you identify bottlenecks and potential points of failure before you deploy an application to production.
End-to-end (E2E) tests are the highest, most complex level of automated testing. E2E tests involve simulating actual user actions such as clicking buttons, entering text into input fields, and interacting with an application’s UI to ensure that all parts of an application work correctly together.
One of the major benefits of E2E testing is confidence. When you know how your application truly behaves in production and you have automated E2E tests that ensure that behavior is maintained, you can refactor and make other changes with confidence that your changes haven’t broken anything.
Testing is an ongoing process instead of an event. The exact type of test to be performed depends on various factors like requirements, the risk involved in testing, and even the feelings of testers and developers, etc. A proper type of software testing that satisfies business requirements as well as senior management expectations is crucial for any organization to gain success.
On the other hand, ineffective software testing may cost you your business reputation, it can cost you high development efforts, and cause you undue stress. Therefore, at the end of the day, the key point to remember is that software testing is a crucial aspect of the software development process and it should not be taken lightly.