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Who this book is for:
* Testers and Test Managers
* Project Managers-Understand the timeline, depth of investigation, and quality of communication to hold testers accountable for.
* Programmers-Gain insight into the sources of errors in your code, understand what tests your work will have to pass, and why testers do the things they do.
* Students-Train for an entry-level position in software development.
What you will learn:
* How to find important bugs quickly
* How to describe software errors clearly
* How to create a testing plan with a minimum of paperwork
* How to design and use a bug-tracking system
* Where testing fits in the product development process
* How to test products that will be translated into other languages
* How to test for compatibility with devices, such as printers
* What laws apply to software quality
"...includes tips on how to create a testing plan & a bug tracking system, how to test for compatibility with other devices, where testing fits best in the product development process, and what laws apply to software quality."
Butthe analysis runs differently if you work for a company that follows an executive-driven qualityimprovement program. In these companies, senior managers play a much more active role in setting qualitystandards, and they make broader use of quality reporting systems, including bug tracking Information. Thetracking system is much more of a management tool than the primarily project-level quality control tool that wediscuss in this chapter. These companies also pay attention to the problems inherent in statistical monitoring ofemployee behavior and to the risk of distracting a Quality improvement group by forcing it to collect too muchdata. Deming (1982) discusses the human dynamics of information reporting in these companies and the stepsexecutives must take to make these systems work.
You use a problem tracking system to report bugs, file them, retrieve files, and write summary reports about them. Agood system fosters accountability and communication about the bugs. Unless the number of reports is trivial, you needan organized system. Too many software groups still use pen-and-paper tracking procedures or computer-basedsystems that they consider awkward and primitive. It's not so hard to build a good tracking system and it's worth it,even for small projects.
This chapter assumes your company is big enough to have a test manager, marketing manager, project manager,technical support staff, etc. It's easier for us to identify roles and bring out some fine points this way. Be aware, though,that we've seen the same interactions in two-person research projects and development partnerships. Each person wearsmany hats, but as long as one tests the work of the other, they face the same issues. If you work in a small team, even asignificant two person class project in school (such as a full year, senior year project), we recommend that you apply asmuch of this system and the thinking behind it as you can.
This chapter describes a problem tracking system that we've found successful. We include the main data entry form,standard reports, and special implementation notes-enough for you to code your own system using any good databaseprogram. Beyond these technical notes, we consider the system objectives, its place in your company, and the effect ofthe system on the quality of your products.
The key issues in a problem tracking system are political, not technical. The tracking system is an organizationalintervention, every bit as much as it is a technical tool. Here are some examples of the system's political power and theorganizational issues it raises:
Here are some of the common issues:
A problem tracking system exists in the service of getting the bugs thatshould be fixed, fixed. Anything that doesn't directly support this purposeis a side issue.
An Example Test Series.
The Objectives and Limits of Testing.
Test Types and their Place in the Software Development Process.
Reporting and Analyzing Bugs.
SPECIFIC TESTING SKILLS.
The Problem Tracking System.
Test Case Design.
Testing Printers (and other devices).
Testing User Manuals.
Test Planning and Test Documentation.
MANAGING TESTING PROJECTS AND GROUPS.
Tying it Together.
Legal Consequences of Defective Software.
Managing a Testing Group.
About the Authors.
Posted May 4, 2009
I chose to buy this book based on other Customers' reviews, to keep it as a reference book for newcomers joining my team (Software Testing).
Despite the fact that I've already gained a significant experience as both developer and tester, I found the content of this book very useful for me. This book was written some years ago, therefore some of its topic could be somehow obsolete today (for example the chapter dealing with automated test tools, a topic which interests me much), but many concepts are still valid and I found that many issues and critical aspects of software testing and test planning explained in this book have been (and still are) experienced in the Organization I work in.
An useful reference book, with many hints for newcomers who first approach the software testing arena, but also with lots of useful points to think about for an experienced technician. For my specific case, I found the chapter dealing with managing a testing team really useful for me.
I definitely recommend this book as a good reference for beginners and, to a good extent, also for skilled technicians.
Posted July 8, 2001
I've had the 2nd edition for about 7 years and still enjoy re-reading this book. Sure, the examples are getting dated now, but in some ways that makes it more interesting. But don't be misled - the core text and concepts are absolutely as relevant today as they ever were. Software testing and quality can be SUCH dry subjects, but the authors do a wonderful job of bringing them to life. This is a very practical book in the sense that testing processes are described from the point of view of someone who has tried almost everything and knows which approaches are great in theory vs those which actually work. Unlike many others, the book doesn't skirt around human resources issues (such as internal politics, motivation and staff retention) but tackles them head on in the last chapter (it really is worth reading cover-to-cover!). The bottom line: a must read for anyone involved in releasing software.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.