Software Testing - Check Lists For Software Tester

During past few days, many people requested to post a checklist that a software tester can follow while testing. Today we will try to set a baseline that should help any software tester in day to day activities. I would like to make a note that the following checklists are defined in most generic form and do not promise to cover all processes that you are be required to go through and follow during your work. There may be some processes which are completely missed out from the lists or it may also contain processes which you don't need to follow in your form of work.

First Things First

  • Check the scripts assigned to you: This is the first and foremost process in the list. There is no specific logic used to assign scripts to testers who should execute them all, but you may come across practices where you will be assigned script based on your work load for the day or your skill to understand and execute it in least possible time.
  • Check the status/comments of the defect in the Test Report Tool: Once you unveil a bug, its very important to keep track of the status of it as you will have to re-test the bug once it is fixed by a developer. Most of the times, general practice is to confirm if any fix to a bug is successful as it also makes it sure that the tester can proceed with other tests involving deeper side of that particular functionality. Sometimes, it also addresses issues related to understanding of functionality of the system for example: if a tester registered a defect, which is not an actual bug as per the programming/business logic. Then in that case, a comment from developer might help in understanding the mistake committed by the tester.

Checks while executing scrips

  • Update the test data sheet with all values which are required such as user name, functionality, test code etc.
  • Use naming conventions defined as testing standards to define a bug appropriately.
  • Take screen prints for the script executed using naming conventions and provide test data that you used for the testing. The screen prints will help other testers and developers to understand how the test was executed and it will also serve as a proof for you. If possible, try to explain the procedure you followed, choice of data and your understanding etc.
  • If your team is maintaining any type of tracking sheet, do not forget to update all the tracking sheets for the bug, it's status, time and date found, severity etc.
  • If you are using a test reporting tool, do not forget to execute the script in the tool. Many test reporting tools require scripts to be executed in order to initiate the life cycle of a bug. For example Test Director needs script to be executed till the step where it the test script failed, other test steps before failed test step are declared as passed.
  • Update the tracking sheets with current status, status in reporting tools etc. if it is required to be updated after you execute the script in the reporting tool.
  • Check if you have executed all the scripts properly and updated the test reporting tool.
  • After you complete your days work, it is better to do a peer to peer review. This step is very important and often helps in finding out missing steps/processes.

Checks while logging defects

  • First of all, confirm with your test lead if the defect is valid.
  • Follow the appropriate naming conventions while logging defects.
  • Before submitting the defect, get it reviewed by Work Lead/Team Lead.
  • Give appropriate description and names in the defect screen prints as per naming conventions.
  • After submitting defects attach the screen prints for the defect on Test Reporting Tool.
  • Note down the defect number/unique identifier and update the test tracking sheet with appropriate information.
  • Maintain a defect log, defect tracking sheet, screen prints dump folder etc. for a backup.

Checks for blocking and unblocking scripts

Blocking or unblocking of a script relates to a bug which affects execution of a script. For example if there is a bug on login screen, which is not allowing anyone enter the account after entering valid username and password and pressing OK button, there is no way you can execute any test script which requires the account screen that comes after the login screen.

  • Confirm with your test lead/work lead if the scripts are really blocked due to an existing bug.
  • Block scripts with an active defect (Defect status: New/Assigned/Fixed/Reopen)
  • Update the current script/defect in test reporting tool and tracking sheets with the defect number/unique identifier, which is blocking the execution of the script or testing of the defect.
  • If a defect is retested successfully, then unblock all scripts/defects blocked by it.

At the end of day, send an update mail to your Team Lead/Work Lead which should include the following:

  • Scripts executed (Number)
  • Defects raised/closed (Number)
  • If any comments added on defects
  • Issues/queries if any

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