Top 7 Software Testing Myths

Nowadays, the user experience delivered by a software application determines its popularity and profitability. The user experience delivered by an application depends on its accessibility, functionality, performance, usability, and security across various devices and platforms. Hence, it becomes essential for enterprises to focus on the quality and user experience of their applications throughout the software development lifecycle.

Many enterprises nowadays implement formal software testing strategy to launch a high quality software application. Also, many businesses nowadays test the software continuously and under real user conditions. But several entrepreneurs still do not realize the importance of testing in the software development lifecycle, and the benefits of testing the software early and continuously. They are still sceptical about the benefits of software testing and believe several software testing myths.

Decoding 7 Common Myths about Software Testing

1) Testing Increases a Software Application’s Time to Market

While developing a new software application, enterprises explore ways to beat completion by reducing its time to market. The QA professionals have to invest both time and effort to evaluate the software’s quality under varying conditions and according to predefined requirements. That is why; many businesses believe that the software testing process increases the product’s time to market. But each enterprise has several options to get its software tested elaborately without increasing its time to market. A business can easily reduce testing time by automating various testing activities. Also, it can implement agile methodology to unify the coding and testing process seamlessly.

2) Testing Increases Software Development Cost

An enterprise has to deploy skilled testers and invest in robust test automation tools to evaluate the quality of the software comprehensively. That is why; many entrepreneurs believe that software testing increases software development cost significantly. But an enterprise can reduce software testing cost in a number of ways. It can opt for open source and free test automation tools to reduce both testing time and cost. Also, the software testing results will help the business to generate more revenue by launching a high quality software application, in addition to avoiding maintenance and correction cost.

3) Test Automation Makes Manual Testing Obsolete

The test automation tools help QA professionals to execute and repeat a variety of tests without putting extra time and effort. Hence, many enterprises explore ways to automate all testing activities. The entrepreneurs often ignore the shortcomings of various test automation tools. They forget the simple fact that test automation tools lack the capability to imagine and make decisions. Unlike human testers, the test automation tools cannot assess an application’s usability and user experience precisely. Nowadays, a software application must deliver optimal user experience to become popular and profitable. Hence, an enterprise must combine human testers and test automation tools to assess the quality of its software more precisely.

4) Elaborate Testing Makes an Application Flawless

While testing a software application, testers perform a variety of tests to evaluate its accessibility, functionality, performance, usability, security, and user experience. They even identify and repair all defects and performance issues in the software before its release. The test results also help enterprises to decide if the software meets all predefined requirements. But the user experience delivered by an application may differ according to user conditions and environments. The testers cannot identify all bugs or defects in an application despite performing and repeating many tests. Hence, the business must be prepared to get the bugs or issues found in the application after its release.

5) Developers are not required to Test the Software

An enterprise must deploy skilled QA professionals to get the quality of its software assesses thoroughly and effectively. But it can always accelerate the software testing process by making the programmers and testers work together. The developers can further assess the quality of application code by performing unit testing and integration testing throughout the coding process. Likewise, they must perform sanity testing to ensure that the software is functioning according to predefined requirements. Agile methodology further requires enterprises to unify software development and testing activities to deliver high quality software applications. The project management approach requires businesses to test the software continuously by a team consisting both programmers and testers.

6) Testing Process Commences after Software Development Process

The conventional waterfall model allows business to start the software testing process after completing the software development process. But the conventional software testing model does not meet the requirements of complex and cross-platform software applications. A steady increase is being noted in the number of enterprises switching from waterfall models to agile methodology and DevOps. As mentioned earlier, agile methodology required businesses to test the software continuously, along with making the programmers and testers work as a single team. Likewise, DevOps requires businesses to unify software development, testing, and deployment processes. Hence, the testers nowadays start testing an application from the initial phase of the software development lifecycle.

7) No Need to Deploy Skilled Software Testers

Many entrepreneurs still believe that the only task of a testing professional is to find bugs or defects in an application. The even do not consider software testing requires skill and creativity. The misconception often makes businesses get their software tested by random people. An enterprise can involve real users in the software testing process to assess the application’s usability and user experience more effectively. But it must deploy skilled testers to get the software evaluated under varying user conditions and environments. The skilled testers understand how to identify the defects and performance issues in the software by creating many test scenarios. The even produce elaborate test results to facilitate the decision making process.

Importance of Software Testing in the IT Industry

Software development companies dedicate a substantial amount of resources and manpower for the development of applications according to requirements specified by enterprises or individuals. However, subsequent to development of such applications/software, companies are required to ensure that such software/applications perform in accordance with the client’s requirements. To ensure that any and all bugs in the software are identified prior to the deployment, various testing procedures are implemented by the IT industry. The importance of this is directly related to the ability of software to measure up to its potential. If the new software is unable to perform the task it was designed for, the client might face severe losses due to stoppage of work and also adversely affect the business of the software development company. The scope of these procedures is to facilitate identification of a problem in the software, fixing of such problems is not within in the scope of software testing. Some of the leading methodologies implemented by companies in the IT industry include General, Load, Functional and Regression Testing.

General Testing

This refers to the general tests carried out on software/applications to ensure the functionality of newly developed software. Some of the common tests included as part of standard Quality Assurance procedures are web performance and usability testing. The web performance testing procedure is mostly engaged in evaluating the online performance of a web-based software application or a website. Usability testing is a mainly subjective approach, which ensures that the software is capable of being utilized effectively in a given set of circumstances. The purpose is to identify the general operating capability of the software/application being tested and to help developers determine some of the areas of improvement for the software. A software development company usually performs general testing of software/applications along with other more advanced methods to ensure that the software conforms to the pre-defined operational capabilities specified by the client/user group.

Load Testing

The load testing procedure simulates operating conditions of the software/application during periods of higher/normal load to gauge the effect of such changes on the functioning of the software/application. This is not the same as stress testing, because load testing checks the operational capabilities in case of both normal load and high load conditions, while stress testing attempts to induce errors in normal operations by using increased system load. This is considered to be a type of non-functional testing, which is undertaken by software development companies to gauge the multi-user support capabilities of the application.

As a commonly employed practice in the software industry, its specific goals are widely disputed and the term is often utilized in conjunctions with volume, reliability, software performance and concurrency testing. By using load testing, developers can attempt to determine the reason for slow performance of software. The common reasons for such slow response commonly include load balancing between multiple servers, client-side processing, network congestion/latency, available database service and/or bugs in the application server(s) or software. The use of load testing is recommended for software/applications, which are subjected to SLA (service level agreement) for ensuring that the software is capable of supporting multiple users. As the procedure simulates an increase in system load by using multiple virtual users, various software are currently available to carry out load testing. Some of the leading load-testing tools used by developers globally are IBM Rational Performance Tester, Apache JMeter, LoadRunner etc. Additionally, a load testing tool commonly favored by software testing companies in India is available as part of the Visual Studio Ultimate Edition of Microsoft.

Functional Testing

This type of testing is a type of black-box testing based on the specifications of the software components being tested. The functions of specific components of the software are feeding inputs and checking the output thus obtained. In functional testing, the internal structure of the program is seldom considered hence, it is classified as a type of black-box testing. The key steps involved in functional testing include identification of functions, which the software is expected to perform, creation of input data according to specifications of the identified functions, determining output based on the specifications of those functions, executing the test scenario followed by comparison of the obtained output vs. the expected output. Functional testing is not the same as system testing as system testing involves validation of a program in comparison to the published system or user requirements, whereas, functional testing is carried out by checking a program with respect to established specifications and available design documents for the software/applications.

Regression Testing

The regression testing refers to any type of software testing, which attempts to identify bugs, which are present in either the functional or the non-functional areas of a system subsequent to making modifications such as configuration and patch changes. The key function of regression testing is to ensure that the use of a patch or upgrade does not lead to the introduction of a new bug into the existing system. Additionally, regression testing helps ensure that the changes in one section of the software do not induce changes in another part of the software’s code. Some of the commonly applied regression testing methods include the use of earlier tests to check for alterations in program operation and the search of any previously fixed bugs, which had re-emerged subsequent to introduction of the new code. Fixed bugs in software often re-emerge and regression testing is one of the leading methods to ensure that such re-emergence is identified and easily controlled before any lasting damage occurs. Software development companies repeatedly perform regression testing of software/applications after any change in coding such as use of patches etc. to ensure that the functionality of the application is unimpaired. Such repetitive testing is usually automated by using an external tool such as Bamboo, TeamCity, Jenkins, Hudson, Tinderbox or BuildBot. This type of testing is generally performed by the QA team in case of leading software development companies, however, smaller companies are often engaged in outsourcing such services to companies specializing in the field of software QA and testing.

What’s Next?

As new technologies emerge, more testing procedures are being developed and implemented by organizations all over the world to ensure that new software perform according to their requirements and specifications even when stress or when additional functionality is introduced into the software. The emerging testing solutions, which are powered by new technology, are designed to reduce the time and resources required for testing in order to streamline the quality control / quality assurance services associated with software development. Some additional types of testing, which are currently used in the software industry are white box testing, system testing, non-functional testing, acceptance testing and integration testing. Each of these testing was developed to identify and resolve application/software limitations in a specific set of conditions; hence they are useful for software testing carried out in case of specific quality assurance and testing procedures.

Software Testing: How Important It Is

A flawed software application can have a huge impact on the developer’s revenue, credibility and reputation in the longer run. So before delivering the software to the client, each company needs to ensure that it is working flawlessly and meeting all requirements or specification of the client. There are many instances when minor flaws in software have resulted in both human and monetary loss. That is why; software testing has already becomes an integral and significant part of the software development life cycle (SDLC).

The agile software development principles further do not consider software development and software testing as two separate processes. The agile methodology emphasizes on the programmers and testers working as a single team, and work together to improve the quality of the software. As an integral part of SDLC, software testing process aims to assess the completeness, correctness and quality of the software before its delivery. At the same time, the test results help businesses to check if the software meets all requirements or specifications of the client.

Why Software Testing is Important for Modern Businesses?

A number of studies have indicated that the cost of fixing bugs in the software increases, if they are not identified and fixed early. When the defects or bugs in the software are detected early, it becomes easier for programmers to eliminate them. That is why; most companies nowadays introduce testing in early phases of SDLC. They further deploy independent QA professionals to assess the software during various stages of development.

Nowadays, IT companies to develop custom and mission-critical software applications. A minor bug in the mission-critical software application can result in both financial and human losses. For instance, a minor flaw in the software used by an aircraft can result in irreparable losses. That is why; the IT company must perform a variety of tests to identify and eliminate all defects, bugs or flaws in the application before it is delivered to the client.

Each modern user has option to choose from thousands of identical software applications. So to keep the users interested and engaged, each enterprise must deliver high quality software. When the software is tested thoroughly and repeatedly, its quality can be assesses more effectively. Based on the test result, the company can launch a high quality product that will stay in the market in the longer run.

Software testing further becomes essential for businesses due to the differences between the development and production environments. While developing the product, programmers focus mainly on its features and functionality. But the features and functionality will have different effect on individual users. When the application is assessed in the testing environment, it becomes easier for QA professionals to assess the user experience accurately. As testing environment and production environment are identical, the performance of the software can be assessed more accurately.

Often clients require developers to include new features in the software during different phases of development. Each time a new feature or functionality is added to the application, the code needs to be tested thoroughly. The QA professionals perform regression testing to ensure that both legacy and new features are working flawlessly. The tests will further help the business to assess the quality of the updated product before it goes live.

The modern websites and web applications must be compatible with multiple operating systems, devices and web browsers. So the enterprises must assess the web application’s performance on various devices, platforms and browsers. The seasoned testers use advanced tools to assess the website’s compatibility across multiple platforms and devices. The test results further help developers to make changes to the code to enhance the website’s compatibility and accessibility.

Many businesses deploy independent QA professionals to protect their goodwill in the competitive market. The online forums and social networks have made it easier for modern users to highlight the defects or flaws in a particular software application. So the enterprise needs to ensure that the end user detects no bugs of flaws. When the software is tested thoroughly, the chances of bugs detected by users are eliminated. Thus, software testing will help developers to impress users and stay in the business over a longer period of time.

Free Apps & Software for Non-Profits

So, what is an open source software? You probably already use some of the most popular open source packages without even realizing it.

  • WordPress (blogging and website design)
  • Firefox (internet browser)
  • Android (mobile device operating system)

These are all open source software. OS software developers (aka the copyright holders) make the source code available to anyone to view or edit. The software or app is also free for anyone to use, copy, or give away. OS software is often developed in a public collaboration. For example, if you click on About Firefox in the browser’s Help menu, you will see that the Firefox internet browser “is designed by Mozilla, a global community working to keep the Web open, public and accessible to all.”The idea behind this way of creating software is the theory that programmers, who work for a for-profit business and the business itself, are focusing on protecting their ownership and profit in addition to, or instead of, making the software the highest quality it can be. OS advocates believe that a larger group of programmers, who rely on peers to find and eliminate problems in the code, will create a more useful and higher quality product for everyone.

The big advantage of open source software, of course, is that it’s free. The fact that the code is public means that hundreds or even thousands of programmers and users may test, evaluate, debug, and enhance the app you eventually use. Here are the top 5 reasons open source advocates give for the benefits of open source software, in addition to the zero-dollar price tag:

  • Security: the more people who can see and test a set of code, the more likely security flaws will be found and fixed.
  • Reliability: it’s peer reviewed, with bugs fixed immediately rather than in far-future versions.
  • Identity: it can be customized.
  • Low-resource intensity: open source software can frequently be run on the older computers common in non-profit offices.
  • Freedom of choice: No commitment until you are sure (try as many different packages as you want-they’re free!)

There are downsides, however. The most common, in my experience, is that there probably isn’t a help desk or tech support phone number for users to call. The help desk for an OS software system may be the same blog or website where programmers and testers download code and discuss bugs that they find.Below is a list of some OS apps and software, which many non-profit organizations will find useful. They are all widely used, award-winning packages. Just remember, that doesn’t mean they are all automatically right for YOUR non-profit. Consider who on your staff (whether in-office or consultants) will

  • install the software
  • maintain the software and any data
  • train new users
  • use the software on a regular basis

Consider also whether this software needs to “talk to” other software in your organization. Will the packages be compatible? If you have existing data that will need to be converted to the new package, who will do that?Now that we’ve cautioned you about the risks, here are our favorite open source software packages:

  • LibreOffice: office productivity suite including word processor, spreadsheet, presentation, database, etc. based on, and successor to OpenOffice. Awarded Best Free Office Suite by CNET Magazine
  • GIMP: GNU Image Manipulation Program photo and image editor. Works on GNU/Linux, OS X, Windows, and more. Named a Top Free Software Pick for 2013 by PC Magazine
  • Audacity: digital audio editor created by a professor and a student at Carnegie Mellon University. Chosen as one of PC World Magazine’s 100 Best Products of 2008
  • Shotcut: cross-platform video editor and encoder. Named a TechRadar Download of the Day
  • Thunderbird: email and chat client developed by Mozilla (maker of Firefox). PC World Magazine’s Best 100 Products in 2005 and 2008
  • KeePass: password manager. Recommended password manager by the German Federal Office for Information Security and the French Network and Information Security Agency. KeePass has the highest score in the password management grid of G2 Crowd
  • Rocket.Chat: multi-platform web chat, video conferencing, and team communications. InfoWorld Magazine BOSSIE 2016 Award

One of the biggest non-profit needs is for a constituent relationship management (CRM) system that allows the organization to keep track of donors, prospects, volunteers, and other constituents as well as communications with constituents. Here are the free and open source CRMs you might investigate when it’s time for a new CRM at your non-profit.

  • Suite CRM (formerly Sugar CRM) is one of the most popular, although it is not specific to non-profit
  • CiviCRM has been developed specifically for non-profit organizations

If you want to learn more, many non-profit and charitable organizations promote the open source software movement. Here are a few of the largest and longest-lived:

  • Apache Software Foundation: provides support for the community of Apache open-source software products
  • The Document Foundation: German charitable foundation created by a large group of free software advocates
  • The Eclipse Foundation: an independent non-profit funded by member dues to allow a vendor-neutral and open community to steward the IBM-created Eclipse Project
  • Free Software Foundation: works to ensure freedom for computer users worldwide, particularly by promoting the GNU free operating system
  • Linux Foundation: supports many open source projects, including the 25-year-old Linux operating system
  • OpenCourseWare Consortium: worldwide network of educational institutions, organizations, and people who promote openness in education, including collective development and use of open educational materials
  • OpenHatch: matches prospective open source software programmers with communities, tools, and education
  • OpenSourceMatters: offers financial, legal, and organizational support for the Joomla! content management system for websites
  • Open Source Initiative: represents the open source community, maintains the Open Source Definition, and creates open-source licenses

The label “open source” is said to have been coined at a strategy session held in 1998 shortly after the announcement of the release of the Netscape web browser source code. In the almost 20 years since then, the Free and Open Source Software market and products have matured. Non-profits can take advantage of the high-quality, free* software available for productivity, constituent management, and other essential tasks.

What Is a Software Development Life Cycle?

A set of instructions for the computer to read and understand to perform a specific task is called a Software. Software development is the process to use computer programming to develop a software. This is not new for many, but the topic under consideration will be new for many. SDLC or Software Development Life Cycle, is the process of developing a new software.

The process of developing a software is not difficult to understand. The procedure of SDLC goes like this:

  1. Gathering and then analyzing the requirements to develop a software
  2. Designing of the software
  3. Coding or programming
  4. Testing the software
  5. Deployment
  6. Maintaining the software

Gathering and Then Analyzing the Requirements to Develop a Software

This is the initial phase. Like starting any business, starting to work on a new software requires a plan. The planning phase will include the project managers, stakeholders and even some senior software developers. No matter how professional or for how long the software development company has been operating, the planning is not an easy phase to follow. Although, it would take less time for experts to plan a new project and then to start working on it but still there will be some questions that must always be answered before taking on any project. Following are some questions, which needs answers before taking on the project:

  • Who will be using the software?
  • How they will be using it?
  • What is the required data to input?
  • What will be the output of the input data?
  • What is the purpose?
  • What skills are required?Will there be a need to hire new personnel or the current staff have the right skills and the capacity to work on this new project?

Find their answers. Is the project worth it? A thorough analysis is required here. There will be more questions that need to be answered before taking on this new project. All the work is documented for future reference.

Designing of the Software

Now comes the second phase, the designing of the software. On the basis of the documentation and the results of the first phase, the system and the software is given a design. From this, the developers comes to know the requirements of the hardware and system required to complete their new project. This phase will also define the system architecture. The designing phase will set the requirements for the next phase.

Coding or Programming

Here comes the role of the software developers. The system design documents are now divided into modules and the developers now start their job. This is going to be the longest phase of all. Programming is done here and it’s known to all that programming isn’t an easy job. It needs plenty of time, expertise and patience. Once done, the software developer sends their work to the tester.

Testing the Software

When in the production business, the quality of the product is always monitored and tested. So is the case with a software development. When the coding is done, the software developer sends their work to the Software Quality Assurance department /personnel. They will overlook the work of the software developers. The software quality assurance or the SQA for short will look for bugs and test the software. The test will be made as per the requirements and the guidelines mentioned in the requirements document. Unit testing, integration testing, system testing, acceptance testing is done by the SQA and if found deviations or errors, it’s sent back to the software developer. The procedures will keeps on repeating themselves until the software is bugs free and ready to deploy.

Deployment of the Software

On successful completion of the software and the testing, it is sent to the concerned client or is available to the public.

Maintaining the Software

Only the non-serious professionals or the ones not willing to carry on their business will not look back to their software but the serious developers will. Every software needs updating and maintenance. Whenever the software encounters some troubles, the software developing company will be there to fix it.

SDLC follows a simple procedure and it doesn’t require you to be a businessperson to know all the phases of SDLC. Every software developer and software developing company knows it all. So when hiring a software developing company you can rest assure that the procedure will be done in a professional way and the best product will be delivered.