There are a number of tools that support different aspects of testing.Some tools clearly support one activity; others may support more than one activity, but are
classified under the activity with which they are most closely associated. Some commercial tools offer support for only one type of activity; other commercial tool vendors offer suites or families of tools that provide support for many or all of these activities.
Testing tools can improve the efficiency of testing activities by automating repetitive tasks. Testing tools can also improve the reliability of testing by, for example, automating large data comparisons or simulating behavior.
Some types of test tool can be intrusive in that the tool itself can affect the actual outcome of the test. For example, the actual timing may be different depending on how you measure it with different performance tools, or you may get a different measure of code coverage depending on which coverage tool you use. The consequence of intrusive tools is called the probe effect.Some tools offer support more appropriate for developers (e.g. during component and component
integration testing). Such tools are marked with “(D)” in the classifications.
Test management tools
Characteristics of test management tools include:
o Support for the management of tests and the testing activities carried out.
o Interfaces to test execution tools, defect tracking tools and requirement management tools.
o Independent version control or interface with an external configuration management tool.
o Support for traceability of tests, test results and incidents to source documents, such as requirements specifications.
o Logging of test results and generation of progress reports.
o Quantitative analysis (metrics) related to the tests (e.g. tests run and tests passed) and the test object (e.g. incidents raised), in order to give information about the test object, and to control and improve the test process.
Requirements management tools:
Requirements management tools store requirement statements, check for consistency and
undefined (missing) requirements, allow requirements to be prioritized and enable individual tests to be traceable to requirements, functions and/or features. Traceability may be reported in test management progress reports. The coverage of requirements, functions and/or features by a set of tests may also be reported.
Incident management tools
Incident management tools store and manage incident reports, i.e. defects, failures or perceived problems and anomalies, and support management of incident reports in ways that include:
o Facilitating their prioritization.
o Assignment of actions to people (e.g. fix or confirmation test).
o Attribution of status (e.g. rejected, ready to be tested or deferred to next release).
These tools enable the progress of incidents to be monitored over time, often provide support for statistical analysis and provide reports about incidents. They are also known as defect tracking tools.
Configuration management tools
Configuration management (CM) tools are not strictly testing tools, but are typically necessary to keep track of different versions and builds of the software and tests.
Configuration Management tools:
o Store information about versions and builds of software and testware.
o Enable traceability between testware and software work products and product variants.
o Are particularly useful when developing on more than one configuration of the
hardware/software environment (e.g. for different operating system versions, different libraries or compilers, different browsers or different computers).
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