In this tutorial, we’re going to discuss smoke testing. Smoke Testing is a software testing methodology. It checks whether the critical functionalities of an application are working correctly, especially after a new release or build. Before proceeding further, let us discuss what smoke testing is in a bit more detail.
2. What Is Smoke Testing?
The term “smoke testing” originated in the electronics industry. In the case of electronics, to test a new device, we look for smoke or other signs of failure after turning it on. Similarly, software smoke testing checks an application’s initial and most critical functions in software testing. This is to check if any problems arise at the time of deployment.
Smoke testing determines whether a software application’s crucial features remain operational after a fresh version or release. It usually happens following the installation of substantial updates or patches for the software.
The purpose of smoke testing is to ensure that the critical features of the application are working fine. It also identifies any issues that may arise due to the recent changes. The testing helps to detect significant issues or failures in the application. If any such issues are there, the testing team can immediately report. This report generally goes to the development team for further debugging and resolution.
3. Types of Smoke Testing
There are different types of testing in the software development process to cater to different stages and purposes. Accordingly, there are three types of smoke testing, one of which is manual smoke testing. To cover all critical functionalities, we perform smoke testing in a structured manner. It is time-consuming, requires a human perspective throughout the testing process, and helps to identify issues that may be missed by automated testing tools.
The second is automated smoke testing. It can be used to quickly verify the critical functionalities of an application using an automated testing tool. which enables the testing team to save time and resources by catching major defects. Additionally, automated testing can be used to repeat the same tests multiple times, ensuring the application works consistently across different environments.
The last type is hybrid smoke testing, where both manual and automated testing processes are combined. It is beneficial because it combines the speed and efficiency of automated testing with the human perspective of manual testing. Additionally, hybrid smoke testing can be customized to fit the specific needs of the application being tested:
4. Advantages of Smoke Testing
Smoke testing is an essential component of the software testing process, providing numerous benefits to software development teams. Smoke testing offers a crucial advantage in software testing by allowing early detection of major defects in the software or application, thereby preventing these issues from being carried forward into further testing stages. This early detection of defects saves time and resources and improves the overall quality of the software, making it more reliable and functional.
Another significant advantage of smoke testing is the quick feedback it provides on the stability of the software or application. This allows developers and testers to address issues promptly and make necessary changes in a timely manner, further reducing the overall time and effort required for testing and debugging.
In addition to these benefits, smoke testing also contributes to increased software quality and customer satisfaction. It plays a vital role in creating stable and reliable software or applications by ensuring early detection of defects. This proactive approach helps to improve customer satisfaction by preventing major issues from surfacing later in the development process.
5. Disadvantages of Smoke Testing
Every software process has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. It is important to carefully evaluate the pros and cons of each to determine if it is the right fit for the specific needs of a project or organization. Let’s discuss the disadvantages of smoke testing.
It only verifies the basic functionality of an application, which means that it may not catch all the issues in an application. Therefore, to ensure the overall quality of an application, other types of testing such as functional testing or regression testing, may still be necessary.
Smoke testing plans to identify critical defects quickly, but it may not identify all defects. This can lead to a false sense of security, where developers assume that the software is defect-free when in fact there may be other unidentified defects. Missed defects or issues may occur as a result of not being able to perform more in-depth testing during smoke testing, which could have been detected otherwise.
Automated smoke testing is a common practice, but it can lead to overlooking certain aspects of an application that may require manual testing. This can result in the possibility of missing critical defects or issues during the smoke testing process. Over-reliance on automation during smoke testing can result in missed defects or issues that may only be detectable through manual testing.
Therefore, it is essential to strike a balance between automation and manual testing to ensure thorough testing coverage.
In some cases, it may overlook defects if the test cases are not correct. For example, if the test cases do not cover all possible scenarios, defects may be missed, leading to a lower-quality product.
6. Examples of Smoke Testing
It is always good to understand a new concept with examples. Here are some examples of smoke testing:
Let’s discuss a few examples of smoke testing in this section because examples are a great way to help understand a new concept. They can provide concrete, real-world scenarios that illustrate how a concept works in practice.
It can include verifying that the installation process is running smoothly without any errors or interruptions. This could include verifying that the installer launches properly, prompts the user for necessary inputs, and installs the software without any issues.
It involves verifying that the login and authentication functionality of the software is working properly. This includes verifying that the login page is displayed correctly and that user credentials are accepted. Test cases can be written to verify that users enter all required information into forms or fields within an application and that the data is saved correctly.
It involves verifying that the software’s basic functionality is working as expected. This includes testing the software’s main features, such as creating a new document, saving a file, or sending an email.
In this article, we discussed smoke testing. We discussed types of smoke testing along with the advantages and disadvantages. The most important parts of the application are tested during smoke testing. It also helps evaluate whether the build is secure enough to move on to the next round of testing.