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Software Testing: Concepts and Operations by Fairouz Tchier, Ali Mili

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7 A Software Testing Taxonomy

7.1 THE TROUBLE WITH HYPHENATED TESTING

When reading about software testing, we often encounter types of testing that include such samples as black box testing, white box testing, unit testing, system testing, regression testing, mutation testing, stress testing, and so on. The trouble with this list is that the qualifiers that we put before testing refer to different attributes of the testing activity: depending on the case, they may refer to a test data selection criterion, or to the scale of the asset under test, or to the assumptions of the test activity, or to the product attribute being tested, and so on. The purpose of this chapter is to classify software testing activities in a systematic manner, using orthogonal dimensions; like all classifications schemes, ours aims to capture in a simple abstraction a potentially complex set of related attributes. A software testing activity can be characterized by a number of interdependent attributes; in order to build an orthogonal classification scheme, we must select a set of independent attributes that is sufficiently small so that its elements are indeed independent, yet sufficiently large to cover all classes of interest. In Section 7.2, we introduce this classification scheme, by identifying the set of attributes that we use for the purpose of classification, along with the secondary attributes that depend on these. In Section 7.3, we consider a number of important testing activities, analyze ...

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