Top 20 Practical Software Testing Tips You Should Read Before Testing Any Application

I wish all the testers to read the software testing practices updated in this article. Read each point carefully and try to implement them in your day-to-day testing activities. This is what I expect from the readers through this article. If you don’t understand any testing practice, ask for more clarification in the comments section below.

However, you will learn all these testing practices by experience. But why don’t you learn all these things before making any mistake?

Come let’s take a look at them!

Here are some of the Best Testing Practices which I learned by Experience:

1) Learn to analyze your test results thoroughly. Do not ignore any test result. The final test result may be ‘pass’ or ‘fail’, but troubleshooting the root cause of ‘fail’ will give you the solution of the problem. Testers will be respected if they not only log the bugs but also provide solutions.

2) Learn to maximize the test coverage each time you test any application. 100% test coverage might not be possible but still, you can always try to reach near it.

3) In order to ensure maximum test coverage, break your application under test (AUT), into smaller functional modules. Write test cases on such individual unit modules. Also if possible break these modules into smaller parts.

E.g: Lets assume that you have divided your website application in modules and ‘accepting user information’ is one of the modules. You can break this ‘User information’ screen into smaller parts for writing test cases: Parts like UI testing, security testing, functional testing of the ‘User information’ form etc.

Apply all form field type and size tests, negative and validation tests on the input fields and write all such test cases for maximum coverage.

4) While writing test cases, write test cases for intended functionality first i.e. for valid conditions according to requirements. Then write test cases for invalid conditions. This will cover expected as well unexpected behavior of the application under test.

5) Think positive. Start testing the application with the intend of finding bugs/errors. Don’t think beforehand that there will not be any bugs in the application. If you test the application with an intention of finding bugs you will definitely succeed to find those subtle bugs also.

6) Write your test cases in the requirement analysis and design phase itself. This way you can ensure that all the requirements are testable.

7) Make your test cases available to the developers prior to coding. Don’t keep your test cases with you waiting to get final application release for testing, thinking that you can log more bugs. Let the developers analyze your test cases thoroughly to develop a quality application. This will also save the re-work time.

8 ) If possible identify and group your test cases for regression testing. This will ensure quick and effective manual regression testing.

9) Applications requiring critical response time should be thoroughly tested for performance. Performance testing is the critical part of many applications. In manual testing this is the mostly ignored part by testers due to lack of required large data volume in performance testing. Find out the ways to test your application for performance. If not possible to create test data manually, then write some basic scripts to create test data for performance test or ask the developers to write one for you.

10) Programmers should not test their own code. As discussed in our previous post, basic unit testing of developed application should be enough for developers to release the application for testers. But you (tester) should not force the developers to release the product for testing. Let them take their own time. Everyone from lead to manager know when the module/update is released for testing and they can estimate the testing time accordingly. This is a typical situation in an agile project environment.

11) Go beyond requirement testing. Test the application for what it is not supposed to do.

12) While doing regression testing use the previous bug graph (Bug graph – number of bugs found against time for different modules). This module-wise bug graph can be useful to predict the most probable bug part of the application.

13) Note down the new terms, concepts you learn while testing. Keep a text file open while testing any application. Note down the testing progress and observations in it. Use these notepad observations while preparing final test release report. This good habit will help you to provide the complete unambiguous test report and release details.

14) Many times testers or developers make changes in the code base for application under test. This is a required step in development or testing environment to avoid execution of the live transaction processing like in banking projects. Note down all such code changes done for testing purpose and at the time of final release make sure you have removed all these changes from the final client-side deployment file resources.

15) Keep developers away from the test environment. This is required a step to detect any configuration changes missing in the release or deployment document. Sometimes developers do some system or application configuration changes but forget to mention those in the deployment steps. If the developers don’t have access to the testing environment they will not do any such changes accidentally on the test environment and these missing things can be captured at the right place.

16) It’s a good practice to involve testers right from the software requirement and design phase itself. These way testers can get knowledge of application dependability resulting in detailed test coverage. If you are not being asked to be a part of this development cycle then you can make a request to your lead or manager to involve your testing team in all the decision making processes or meetings.

17) Testing teams should share best testing practices, experience with the other teams in their organization.

18) Increase your conversation with the developers to know more about the product. Whenever possible make face-to-face communication for resolving disputes quickly and to avoid any misunderstandings. But also when you understand the requirement or resolve any dispute – make sure to communicate the same over written communication ways like emails. Do not keep anything verbal.

19) Don’t run out of time to do high priority testing tasks. Prioritize your testing work from high to low priority and plan your work accordingly. Analyze all associated risks to prioritize your work.

20) Write clear, descriptive, unambiguous bug report. Do not only provide the bug symptoms but also provide the effect of the bug and all the possible solutions.

Don’t forget that testing is a creative and challenging task. Finally, it all depends on your skill and experience as how you handle this challenge.

Over to you:

Sharing your own testing experience, tips or testing secrets in the comments below will definitely make this article more interesting and helpful!!

Let us know your thoughts/suggestions about this article.