Unit Testing

During agile software development, you make simultaneous changes to different components or units of software. You should test these units before implementation. That’s where unit testing would come into play. Unit testing is a form of software testing that examines individual software units or components. The goal is to ensure that each unit of software code works as intended. Unit testing is carried out by developers throughout the development phase of an application. Unit tests are used to isolate a portion of code and ensure that it is accurate.

When it comes to unit testing, a unit can be an object, module, procedure, method, or function. Because software developers often want to save time by conducting little unit testing, this is a fallacy because insufficient unit testing leads to significant costs in defect repair during System Testing, Integration Testing, and even Beta Testing after the program has been developed. It saves time and money in the long run if thorough unit testing is done early in the development process. No matter what software you develop, you should do unit testing.

Multiple techniques are available for you to do unit testing. They include testing branch coverage, decision coverage, statement coverage, finite state machine coverage, and condition coverage.

You can do unit testing under manual method or automated method. When it comes to automated unit testing, a developer creates a portion of code in the program just for the purpose of testing the function. When the program is deployed, they will comment out and eventually remove the test code.

A developer might potentially isolate the function in order to thoroughly test it. This is a more extensive unit testing method that entails copying and pasting code into its own testing environment rather than the natural one. Isolating the code aids in the discovery of unneeded dependencies between the code under test and other units or data spaces in the product. These dependencies can then be removed.

— Slimane Zouggari

Spike testing

Spike testing is a form of software testing in which a software program is put through its paces with significant traffic load increases and decreases. Spike testing is used to assess how a software program responds to a rapid increase or decrease in user load, as well as to identify how long it takes to recover following a spike in user demand.

Spike testing is a technique for determining the flaws in software programs in agile software development. Spike testing is used to assess how the system reacts to sudden increases and decreases in user load. Spike testing is used in software engineering to assess whether a system’s performance will degrade when it is suddenly subjected to a high load.

Another objective of spike testing is to figure out how long it takes to recover. The system requires some time to settle between two consecutive surges in user traffic. The time it takes to recuperate should be as short as feasible. If you are developing an ecommerce store, and plans to launch special deals on Black Friday, you should subject the system to spike testing. Then you can ensure that the system will not crash because of the high volume of traffic that it receives.

There is a standardized approach to follow as you do spike testing in an agile environment. Before you do the spike test, you should determine load capacity. Then you need to prepare the test environment. After that, you can define the expected load. You can continue to increase the load along with time as you do the test. Then you can set back the load to normal and finish your testing. Once you are done with spike testing, you can analyze the results.

— Slimane Zouggari

Soak Testing

Soak testing is a non-functional testing approach that you follow during agile software development. It is used to evaluate the performance of a software program when it is subjected to a large amount of load over a long period of time. Soak testing is used to see if a software program can withstand a large volume of use and to see what happens if it is used outside of its intended parameters.

When a system is utilized for two hours, it may operate normally; but, if the system is used constantly for ten hours or longer, it may fail or behave abnormally/randomly/crash. Soak Testing is used to forecast such failures.

Because an application must be in a functioning state for as long as a day or night, soak testing is best done on weekends. It is entirely dependent on the testing situation’s constraints. Soak tests are one of the most essential compliance criteria that any firm must follow to the letter. Most Soak Tests are governed by the amount of time provided. If an application requires a long length of time, it must execute without interruption. It should include all of the possibilities that the stakeholders have agreed upon.

The time between such window periods is a major driver for defining the scope of a Soak Test. Almost every system comes with a maintenance period, and the time between such window periods is a critical driver for determining the scope of a Soak Test.

For example, banks that develop systems to work with merchants should do soak testing. This is where the tester would system under a load for up to 150 hours continuously to monitor how it would behave. During soak testing, you will try to locate some common issues. They include memory allocation problems, database resource utilization problems, performance degradation related issues, connection issues, and gradual degradation of the systems along with time.

— Slimane Zouggari

Stress testing

Software you develop in an agile environment should be robust and stable. You can measure that through stress testing. Stress testing is a form of software testing that evaluates a software application’s stability and dependability. Stress testing is used to evaluate software’s resilience and error handling skills under extremely high load circumstances, as well as to ensure that software does not crash in critical scenarios. It also goes beyond standard operational settings to see how software performs in severe situations.

The purpose of stress testing is to examine how the system reacts following a failure. A system should provide an acceptable error message when under high conditions for stress testing to be effective. Massive data sets may be utilized to conduct Stress Testing, which may become lost throughout the process. While stress testing, testers should not lose this security-related information.

Your software would be subjected to lot of stress during certain instances. For example, the level of stress will increase during festive seasons. Stress testing can help you to ensure that the system will not crash during such situations.

Multiple approaches are available for you to do stress testing. They include application stress testing, transactional stress testing, systematic stress testing, and exploratory stress testing.

Before stress testing, you should plan it carefully. You should analyze the system and gather system data. Then you should create the automation scripts. Along with that, you can proceed with executing the scripts. You can then do a result analysis. This will help you to discover bottlenecks that exist. You can then tweak and optimize the system, so that you can end up with receiving benchmark results. Some popular tools that you can use for stress testing include Jmeter, LoadRunner, Neo Load, and Stress Tester.

— Slimane Zouggari

Load Testing

Agile software development consists of both functional testing as well as non-functional testing. When it comes to non-functional testing, load testing is one of the most prominent tests that you need to do. Load testing is a type of non-functional software testing in which a software application’s performance is evaluated under a specified load. It controls how the software program acts when several people access it at the same time. Load testing is used to identify performance bottlenecks and assure the stability and smooth operation of software applications prior to deployment.

You do load testing to determine maximum operating capacity of a software and to determine whether existing infrastructure is sufficient enough to launch the application. You will also determine the overall sustainability of the application with related to peak user load via load testing. On top of everything, load testing can help you to understand the total number of concurrent users, which the application can support at a time.

If your software gets more users than it is supposed to, it will crash. Hence, you should ensure that desired number of users can access the system without encountering any problems. That’s where you should do load testing. You will ensure performance and reliability of the system with load testing.

You can do load testing through multiple approaches. They include manual load testing, using open source load testing tools, or using enterprise level load testing tools. Before you do load testing, you should create a test environment. Then you need to create load test scenarios. After that, you can prepare data for each and every transaction, and execute the test cases. Upon analyzing the results, you can fine-tune the system to accept desired load, and retest.

— Slimane Zouggari

Performance testing

At the time of developing software in an agile environment, you should pay special attention to performance testing. Performance testing is a software testing method for evaluating a software application’s speed, reaction time, stability, dependability, scalability, and resource use under a certain workload. The basic goal of performance testing is to find and remove performance bottlenecks in software applications. It is also known as “Perf Testing” and is a subset of performance engineering.

During performance testing, you will be paying attention to three important features of software. They include stability, scalability, and speed. Performance testing is carried out to offer information to stakeholders about their application’s performance, stability, and scalability. Performance Testing, moreover, reveals what has to be addressed before a product is released to the market. Without performance testing, software is more likely to have issues like slowness when several people are using it at the same time, inconsistencies across various operating systems, and poor usability.

You can do multiple types of performance testing on a software. They include load testing, stress testing, volume testing, spike testing, endurance testing, and scalability testing. These tests can help you to overcome common performance related problems, including poor scalability, poor response time, long load time, and bottlenecking.

To begin performance testing, you should prepare the testing environment and discover performance acceptance criteria. Then you can plan the performance test and configure the test environment accordingly. The next step would be to implement performance testing design and run the rest. You can analyze the results, tune, and continue to retest. You should continue this until you end up with getting desired results.

— Slimane Zouggari

Smoke testing

After you develop a software in an agile environment, you should test and confirm whether it is stable or not. This is where smoke testing can help. Smoke Testing is a software testing technique that verifies whether a software package has been delivered and is stable. Smoke testing allows the QA team to continue with the rest of the software testing. It is made up of a small number of tests that are run on each build to verify program functionality. “Build Verification Testing” or “Confidence Testing” are other terms for smoke testing.

To put it another way, we’re checking to see whether the essential features are working and if there are any show-stoppers in the build we’re testing.

It’s a quick and dirty regression test of main features. It’s a straightforward test that verifies that the product is ready for testing. This allows you to see if the build is faulty, preventing you from wasting time and money on further testing.

The smoke tests indicate that the structure is ready for further formal testing. The primary goal of smoke testing is to discover serious problems early on. Smoke tests are used to show that a system is stable and meets the criteria.

When new software functions are built and integrated with an existing build in the QA/staging environment, smoke testing is performed. It verifies whether or not all key functions are operational.

The development team deploys the build in QA in this testing technique. Testers execute test cases on the build after taking selections of test cases. The application’s essential features are tested by the QA team. The purpose of this set of test cases is to expose construction errors. If these tests pass, the QA team will move on to Functional Testing. QA engineers/QA lead do Smoke Testing after delivering the build to the QA environment. Whenever a new build is released, the QA team determines the application’s primary functionality in order to do smoke testing. The QA team looks for show-stoppers in the application being tested.

— Slimane Zouggari

Acceptance testing

Acceptance testing, which is also known as User Acceptance Testing, is where the end user would verify the functionality of a system before accepting it. As you do software development in an agile environment, you will continuously offer new developments to the system. At every release, the user will do acceptance testing and confirm that you have developed the system as per the initial requirements of the client.

The primary goal of UAT is to verify the end-to-end business process. It is not concerned with aesthetic flaws, misspellings, or system testing. User Acceptance Testing is performed in a separate testing environment with data that is similar to that used in production. Two or more end-users will be participating in this type of black box testing.

User Acceptance Testing is done by the client and end users. However, there are situations where the development team does a demonstration of the developed functionality and show it to the client.

After software has undergone Unit, Integration, and System testing, the need for User Acceptance Testing arises because developers may have built software based on requirements documents based on their own understanding, and further required changes during development may not have been effectively communicated to them, so user acceptance testing is used to determine whether the final product is accepted by the client/end-user.

There are multiple steps in a user acceptance test. They start from analyzing business requirements and creating test plan. Then you will discover the test scenarios and create testcases. Along with that, you will also prepare test data. The next step is to run all test cases and record results. As you run the test cases, you confirm business objectives as well. Clients and end users do this and verify that software is developed as per the initial requirement.

— Slimane Zouggari

System testing

System testing is a type of testing that verifies a software product’s completeness and integration. A system test is used to assess the end-to-end system requirements. Typically, software is just one part of a bigger computer system. The program is eventually interfaced with various software/hardware systems. System testing is a collection of tests whose primary goal is to put a computer-based system through its paces.

For example, let’s assume that you are developing a booking system in an agile software development environment. The booking system will have the inventory management module, reservation module, admin module, and many other modules. All these modules combine together to create the final system. Once you develop the final system, you test it as a whole to determine whether intended functionality is working or not. That’s where system testing can help you.

There are two main approaches to do system testing. They include white box testing and black box testing.

You should understand what you are trying to achieve in system testing, before getting your hands on it. During system testing, you proceed with testing fully integrated programs, including external peripherals, to see how components interact with one another and with the entire system. This scenario is also known as End to End testing. Then you need to check for intended results by thoroughly evaluating each input in the program. The application’s user experience is being tested as a part of system testing as well.

Multiple types of system testing are available for you to follow. They include usability testing, regression testing, load testing, functional testing, migration testing, software testing, and hardware testing. It is important to have a proper plan and then proceed with testing the system. This will help you to verify the functionality of the system at the end of the day.

— Slimane Zouggari

Integration testing

As you develop software in an agile environment, you will come across the need to integrate multiple systems to achieve desired functionality. Upon integrating different systems, it is important to test the functionality of the entire system as well. This is where integration testing comes into play. You will be testing all the integrated systems as a group.

For example, assume that you are going to integrate a Point of Sale system with a CRM to store customer information. You can do the integration via an API. After you create the link, you should do integration testing and see whether the integration is successful or not. This will help you to ensure the overall functionality of your system.

There are multiple approaches to do integration testing. If you have a small system, you may try big bang testing approach. This is where you integrate all modules and proceed with testing the entire unit. If the system is large, you can try incremental testing. This is where you integrate two or more modules at a time and proceed with integration. Likewise, you may also try stubs and drivers testing approach. This is where you use dummy programs for integration and proceed with testing. Another approach for testing is bottom-up testing. This is where you will test the integration of lower modules at the beginning, and then continue to test higher level modules. The opposite of it would be top-down testing, where you test higher level modules first.

No matter how you do integration testing, it is important to determine the best test strategy. Based on that, you can create your test cases. If you have a good understanding about the architecture of the system, you can get a helping hand to proceed with integration testing. You should never ignore the importance of test data, as you do integration testing.

— Slimane Zouggari