Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Testing Glossary

A simple glossary of Software Testing

Ad Hoc Testing
Goal oriented passing through the product. Sometimes to prove or disprove a notion of how the product will behave.

Alpha Test
The part of the Test Phase of the PLC where code is complete and the product has achieved a degree of stability. The product is fully testable (determined by QA). All functionality has been implemented and QA has finished the implementation of the test plans/cases. Ideally, this when development feels the product is ready to be shipped.

Automated Testing
Creation of individual tests created to run without direct tester intervention.

Beta Test
The part of the Test Phase of the PLC where integration testing plans are finished, depth testing coverage goals met; Ideally, QA says product is ready to ship. The product is stable enough for external testing (determined by QA).

Black Box Test
Tests in which the software under test is treated as a black box. You can't "see" into it. The test provides inputs and responds to outputs without considering how the software works.

Boundary Testing
Test which focus on the boundary or limit conditions of the software being tested. (Some of these tests are stress tests).

Breadth Testing
Matrix tests which generally cover all product components and functions on an individual basis. These are usually the first automated tests available after the functional specifications have been completed and test plans have been drafted.

Breath Testing
Generally a good thing to do after eating garlic and before going out into public. Or you may have to take a breath test if you're DUI.

A phenomenon with an understanding of why it happened.

Code Complete
Phase of the PLC where functionality is coded in entirety; bug fixes are all that are left. All functions found in the Functional Specifications have been implemented.

Code Freeze
When development has finished all new functional code. This is when development is in a "bug fixing" stage.

Coding Phase
Phase of the PLC where development is coding product to meet Functional/Architectural Specifications. QA develops test tools and test cases during this phase.

Compatibility Test
Tests that check for compatibility of other software or hardware with the software being tested.

Concept Phase
Phase of the PLC where an idea for a new product is developed and a preliminary definition of the product is established. Research plans should be put in place and an initial analysis of the competition should be completed. The main goal of this phase is to determine product viability and obtain funding for further research.

Coverage analysis
Shows which functions (i.e., GUI and C code level) have been touched and which have not.

Data Validation
Verification of data to assure that it is still correct.

To search for and eliminate malfunctioning elements or errors in the software.

Definition Phase
See Design Phase.

This is when a component of a product is dependent on an outside group. The delivery of the product or the reaching a certain milestone is affected.

Depth Testing
Encompasses Integration testing, real world testing, combinatorial testing, Interoperability and compatibility testing.

Design Phase
Phase of the PLC where functions of the product are written down. Features and requirements are defined in this phase. Each department develops their departments' plan and resource requirements for the product during this phase.

Dot Release
A major update to a product.

A bug that no one wants to admit to.

The center of interest or activity. In software, focus refers to the area of the screen where the insertion point is active.

Phase of the PLC defining modules.

Their implementation requirements and approach, and exposed API. Each function is specified here. This includes the expected results of each function.

See Green Master.

Green Master (GM)
Phase of the PLC where the certification stage begins. All bugs, regressed against the product, must pass. Every build is a release candidate (determined by development).

Graphical User Interface.

Integration Testing
Depth testing which covers groups of functions at the subsystem level.

Interoperability Test
Tests that verify operability between software and hardware.

Load Test
Load tests study the behavior of the program when it is working at its limits. Types of load tests are Volume tests, Stress tests, and Storage tests.

This term refers to making software specifically designed for a specific locality.

Maintenance Release
See Inline.

A standard of measurement. Software metrics are the statistics describing the structure or content of a program. A metric should be a real objective measurement of something such as number of bugs per lines of code.

Events in the Product Life Cycle which define particular goals.

Performance Test
Test that measures how long it takes to do a function.

A flaw without an understanding.

Product Life Cycle - see Software Product Life Cycle.

Pre-build 1; product definition phase. (Functional Specification may still be in process of being created).

Product Life Cycle
The stages a product goes through.

from conception to completion. Phases of product development includes: Definition Phase, Functional/Architectural Specification Phase, Coding Phase, Code Complete Phase, Alpha, Beta, Zero Bug Build Phase, Green Master Phase, STM, and Maintenance/Inline Phase.

Proposal Phase
Phase of the PLC where the product must be defined with a prioritized feature list and system and compatibility requirements.

QA Plan
A general test plan given at the macro level which defines the activities of the test team through the stages of the Product Life Cycle.

Real World Testing
Integration testing which attempt to create environments which mirror how the product will be used in the "real world".

Regression Testing
Retesting bugs in the system which had been identified as fixed, usually starting from Alpha on.

People, software, hardware, tools, etc. that have unique qualities and talents that can be utilized for a purpose.

Something that could potentially contribute to failing to reach a milestone.

See Ship to Manufacturing.

Storage Tests
Test how memory and space is used by the program, either in resident memory or on disk.

Stress Test
Tests the program's response to peak activity conditions.

Syncopated Test
A test that works in harmony with other tests. The timing is such that both tests work together, but yet independently.

Test Case
A breakdown of each functional area into an individual test. These can be automated or done manually.

Test Phase
Phase of the PLC where the entire product is tested, both internally and externally. Alpha and
Beta Tests occur during this phase.

Test Plan
A specific plan that breakdown testing approaches on a functional area basis.

Test Suite
A set of test cases.

The degree to which the intended target users can accomplish their intended goals.

Volume Tests
Test the largest tasks a program can deal with.

White Box Test
It is used to test areas that cannot be reached from a black box level. (Sometimes called Glass
Box testing).

Zero Bug Build
Phase of the PLC where the product has stabilized in terms of bugs found and fixed. Development is fixing bugs as fast as they are found, the net resulting in zero bugs on a daily basis. This is usually determined when after a few builds have passed. This is the preliminary stage before Green Master.    

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