Regression Testing

What is Regression Testing?

Regression testing is a software testing technique that re-runs functional and non-functional tests to ensure that a software application works as intended after any code changes, updates, revisions, improvements, or optimizations. Its purpose is to maintain the overall stability of the software application by keeping a check on the functionality of the existing features, detecting unexpected faults that may arise due to tweaks, enhancements, or extending the existing codebase.

Benefits of Regression Testing

  • Detect Unexpected Faults: Identifies faults that may arise from code modifications, ensuring software stability and functionality.
  • Provide Informative Feedback: Offers valuable feedback for product development, allowing for timely modifications and improvements to the software code.
  • Verify Operational Code: Re-runs functional and non-functional tests to confirm that previously tested code remains operational when new features or changes are introduced.
  • Implement Effective Techniques: Involves selecting the right techniques, tools, and frameworks, as well as regularly updating and maintaining test cases.
  • Save Time with Automation: Automating the regression testing process saves time and effort, enhancing the efficiency of the testing experience.
  • Follow Best Practices: Adhering to best practices ensures a more efficient and successful regression testing experience.

How to Perform Regression Testing

To perform regression testing effectively, follow these steps:

  • Implement a Regression Framework: Establish a regression framework from the beginning of the project.
  • Regularly Update Test Designs: Reassess developers' and users' needs regularly, and update test designs accordingly.
  • Focus on User Experience: Analyze user experience on your web application to concentrate test designs on highly used functionalities.
  • Expand Testing Pack: Add new tests to the testing pack whenever new functionality is added to the application.
  • Automate Regression Tests: Use automation tools like Selenium, Cypress, Playwright, or Puppeteer to streamline the regression testing process.
  • Perform Manual Testing: Conduct manual testing on a cloud of browsers and devices if needed for comprehensive coverage.

Keep in mind the common challenges in regression testing:

  • Time Consumption: Manage the extensive time required for thorough regression testing.
  • Resource Allocation: Ensure adequate allocation of resources for effective testing.
  • Balancing Development and Testing: Balance between sprint development and iterative testing.
  • Maintaining Up-to-Date Test Cases: Keep test cases current to reflect the latest changes in the application.
  • Managing Test Environments: Effectively manage test environments to ensure accurate testing conditions.

Measure the effectiveness of regression testing by:

  • Analyze Test Results: Review test results to measure regression testing effectiveness.
  • Quantify Testing Efficiency: Evaluate the efficiency of the testing process.
  • Evaluate Test Case Prioritization: Assess the prioritization of test cases based on their importance and impact.
  • Assess Code Change Impact: Determine the impact of code changes on the application's stability.
  • Monitor Business Function Stability: Track the stability of key business functions to ensure they remain unaffected by changes.

Types of Regression Testing

There are several types of regression testing, each with its own advantages and use cases. Some common types include:

  • Corrective regression testing: Used when no changes have been made to the source code, allowing for the reuse of existing test cases and ensuring the functionality of the current features.
  • Progressive regression testing: Applied when new system components are introduced, requiring new testing environments or test cases to be developed. It helps determine whether the updates or changes affect the existing components.
  • Selective regression testing: Allows for the selection of specific components to be retested, reducing the effort, resources, and time required for the entire system.
  • Partial regression testing: Employed when changes are made to the application's existing source code, ensuring that the new programming line does not influence or disrupt the application's overall performance.
  • Complete regression testing: Applied to the entire software structure when multiple updates are introduced into the root code, typically used before a product launch.
  • Retest-all regression testing: Re-executes every test scenario using all previous test cases, ensuring that new source code modifications do not cause problems in the overall application functionality.
  • Unit regression testing: Isolates units of code and tests them without affecting their dependencies, promoting independent code testing.

Best Practices for Regression Testing

Adopting best practices for regression testing ensures the software's stability and functionality. Begin by identifying changes in the source code and prioritizing them based on product requirements. Select test cases to re-run, considering test scenarios to determine execution time. Categorize automated and manual test cases, prioritize them, and schedule their execution.

Focus on highly used functionalities and regularly reassess developers' and users' needs to update test designs. Implement a regression framework from the beginning of the project and add new tests when new functionality is introduced. Automate regression testing in an agile development cycle to identify regression bugs quickly. Incorporate feedback from regression testing, update test cases based on changes in requirements, and foster collaboration between development and testing teams. Finally, use metrics to measure regression testing success and make data-driven decisions for future test runs.

Other terms

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