Complete Guide To Software Testing Life Cycle
To understand the STLC (Software Testing Life Cycle) process, we need to understand what software testing is. Software testing is a process of monitoring software to find failures and errors and ensure its suitability for its use. It can be done manually where top software testing service providers use their experience, skills, and knowledge, or they can perform automatic testing as an alternative.
The primary goal of the testing process is to ensure that all user requirements have been fulfilled in the software and there are no undetected errors in the system. However, the overall goal of STLC is to give end-users a defectless solution for their requirements.
Software testing takes place in multiple steps throughout the project development phase. Testing also occurs after completing each phase or certain checkpoints in each development phase. Here, we will discuss STLC in detail. Let’s see which phases are included in STLC and their importance.
What is the Software Testing Life Cycle?
The STLC is a repetitive and cyclical procedure that has the aim of preventing the software from errors and faults. Primarily, the STLC has planning, test analysis, setup, execution, designing, and various test closure activities. Because of the software complexity, it is not possible to guarantee that any product is error-free and only a single test is executed. Hence, multiple tests are made on every phase of STLC.
There are various tests that can be executed alongside each other or separately at different times of the life cycle. For instance, regression testing, usability testing, sanity testing, and exploratory testing. Each test has its special purpose and will change depending on different circumstances.
The STLC has below given stages:
- Requirement analysis
- Planning the tests
- Test case development and designing
- Environment setup for running tests
- Executing the Tests
- Test Cycle Closure
Characteristics of STLC
- STLC is a stepwise method for making sure that the project developed is of better quality.
- Enhancing the efficiency and regularity of the agile testing process.
- When requirements are made clear, an SRS (Software Requirements Specifications) document is made and the STLC process should also begin.
- Defining goals and expectations clearly
- Ensure the features of the software are passed and tested before adding new features.
Different STLC phases
There are various steps that software testing companies follow for performing STLC. Here are the primary steps that are involved in software testing services:
This stage or phase is the primary step of the STLC process. In this step, the software testers must know the product needs that require testing. For eg. QA teams study both non-functional and functional needs and ultimately determine the software requirements that need testing.
The typical process of this phase includes:
- Searching and gathering test requirements
- Making sure that the QA experts has clearly understood the testing requirements.
- Develop a RTM (requirements traceability matrix) to monitor every code to the original requirement.
- Searching if there are any flaws in the product specifications.
Planning the Tests
With all the data gathered in requirement analysis step, the QA team moves one step forward in the test planning process. Test planning is an quintessential phase of the STLC process. All decided testing strategies will be used to test the program and are defined during this phase.
The testing team leads the estimation of the cost and efforts for the whole project while working on the test planning phase. Here a variety of test activities are strategized and planned all together with resource analysis; this increases the effective planning phase and improves in gaining the test target.
The software testing process is not valued without using effective testing tools; especially in automation testing. Picking up the accurate tool is done in this phase. There are many tools available for performing software testing. Study them and pick the accurate tool wisely.
The test planning phase includes:
- Making a test plan as per the defined requirements
- Picking the correct manual or automation testing tool
- Assigning the responsibilities and roles to individual team members
- Search for accurate training requirements if required
Designing and Developing Test Cases
Once the requirements are clear and examined, the QA team will create a test plan for the same. Now, it is time to shape the testing plan by turning the plan into real-time test cases. For checking and validating every test cases, test plan, are developed and devised on a specific strategy.
Test case design in the software testing life cycle is an important process as you will have to determine the defects of the software. It can be called a defect identification process or defect analysis.
Designing the test cases includes two steps- Identification of test cases and analysis of test cases.
The first step involves the identification of all possible test cases which covers all user scenarios and finally after analyzing them, we have to remove test cases that aren’t required or have low priority, or are not capable of finding defects in the software.
Designing and development of test cases include:
- Reviewing and updating the well-prepared test cases and automation scripts
- Addressing the test conditions for required test outcomes
- Preparing proper test data that is necessary for testing purposes
Setting up the Testing Environment
Post designing and developing various test cases, to replicate and establish the real environmental factors to carry out actual testing activities, the testing process requires a proper platform for carrying out these tests. This environment should have all essential software and hardware solutions.
In this phase, testers prepare a proper testing environment. The test environment makes the requirements under which testers will test the software. As this is a stand-alone activity, it runs concurrently with the STLC- test case development phase.
The testing environment may differ from one company to the other. In some situations, the developers or testers themselves build the testing environment. While in other situations, the client builds up a testing environment as per the requirements of their project.
The team of testers creates smoke testing while customers prepare the test environment. The reason for performing this tests is to validate and monitor the test environment by knowing the stability and readiness.
Executing the tests
In the test execution stage, the software or app is almost ready for testing as per the decided test plan. This stage includes executing different test cases, searching for software bugs, and solving them. The QA services team along with the development team of different reported bugs fixes things on time.
Here are some functions that are performed while the test execution phase:
- Reporting bug details that arise from accomplishing test cases
- Again test the software after fixing the bugs and monitor that if there are any new defects or not
- Use test automation for increasing test coverage
Closing the tests with reports and solutions
Test closure is the final step of the software testing life cycle. This stage is the end of the execution of test cases and final product delivery. On the basis of the test results, the QA team communicates about the project costs, product quality, and test coverage. In the end, this team will give a test closure report. It will contain a summary of all test results.
Here are the main functions performed during the phase of test closure:
- Checking test strategy, deliverables, test plans, and other automated test scripts
- Completing incident report that has any unexpected behavior observed while testing the project
Searching for faults is the last step of SDLC and it is no longer effective. However, a company must concentrate on other daily duties like spending too much of your time which takes longer to produce minimum output.
It is necessary to take efficient steps and make use of resources and time to make software testing run more smoothly. Implementing a systematic STLC will allow you to fix the bugs and enhance your work’s quality. For more such information, stay tuned with us by bookmarking our page. Happy learning and testing!
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