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An Empirical Comparison of Fault-Detection Effectiveness and Cost of Exhaustive and Pair-Wise Testing

By Shashvat A Thakor

Abstract

Graphical User Interface (GUI) is an integral part of the contemporary software. Testing GUI poses different challenges compared to those applications not involving GUI. The main reason is that GUI involves interactive input, where as the output produced is often graphical. One of the approaches in testing GUI is functional testing. The goal is to find the difference between the actual behavior and desired behavior mentioned in specification. A standard method of generating specification based functional tests is to partition the input space, and then select test data from each partition. One such systematic approach, the category partition method, is however exhaustive in nature. In order to reduce the number of test cases generated by the category partition method, pairwise sampling can be used. Pair-wise sampling is based on the observation that most of the errors occur because of interaction of at the most two factors. In this paper we empirically compare fault-detection ability and the cost of applying category partition method (exhaustive) and pair-wise sampling. Our results, based on the subject applications, show that pair-wise sampling can be used at much lower cost and without losing much of the fault-finding ability. Keywords

Topics: Software testing, GUI testing, functional testing, category partition method, pair-wise sampling, empirical
Year: 2008
OAI identifier: oai:CiteSeerX.psu:10.1.1.187.8347
Provided by: CiteSeerX
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