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Ad hoc testing is a commonly used term for software testing performed without planning and documentation, but can be applied to early scientific experimental studies. The tests are conducted informally and randomly without any formal expected results. The tester improvises the steps and arbitrarily executes them (like a monkey typing while dancing). Though defects found using this method are more difficult to reproduce (since there are no written test cases), sometimes very interesting defects are found which would never have been found if written test cases existed and were strictly followed.

The very term ad-hoc implies the lack of structure or something that is not methodical. When you talk about ad-hoc testing, it means that it is a form of black box or behavioral testing performed without any formal process in place. This is mainly done with the aim of trying to uncover defects or flaws which cannot be captured through traditional or formal processes followed during the testing cycle.

Since ad-hoc testing is more of a “wild-child” testing technique that doesn’t have to be structured, the general recommendation is that it must be performed after the execution of the current test bucket is done. Another point of view is that this could be done when detailed testing cannot be performed due to less time.

When such kind of random testing techniques are performed, it is apparent that the testers perform this without any particular use case in mind with the aim to break the system.Hence it definitely is even more obvious that such intuitive or creative testing methodology requires the tester to be extremely skilled, capable and have in depth know-how of the system. Ad-hoc testing ensures that the testing performed is complete and is particularly very useful in determining the effectiveness of the test bucket.

Types of Ad-hoc testing

Buddy testing- In this form of testing there will be a test member and a development member that will be chosen to work on the same module. Just after the developer completes the unit testing, the tester and developer sit together and work on the module. This kind of testing enables the feature to be viewed in a broader scope for both parties.

Pair testing- In this testing, two testers work together on a module with the same test setup shared between them. The idea behind this form of testing to have the two testers brainstorms ideas and methods to have more number of defects. Both can share the work of testing and making necessary documentation of all observations made.

Monkey testing- This testing is mainly performed at the unit testing level. The tester parses data or tests in a completely random way to ensure that the system is able to withstand any crashes.

Benefits of Ad-hoc testing

  1. The biggest advantage that stands out is that a tester can find more number of defects than in traditional testing because of the various innovative methods they can apply to test the software.
  2. This form of testing can be applied anywhere in the SDLC; it’s not only restricted to the testing team. The developers can also conduct this testing, which would help them code better and also predict what problems might occur.
  3. Can be coupled with other testing to get best results which can sometimes cut short the time needed for the regular testing. This would enable better quality test cases to be generated and better quality of the product on the whole.
  4. Doesn’t mandate any documentation to be done which prevents extra burden on the tester. Tester can concentrate on actually understanding the underlying architecture.
  5. In cases when there is not much time available to test, this can prove to be very valuable in terms of test coverage and quality.

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The last decade has seen an overwhelming evolution of the software testing industry. This rapid scale of development is keeping not just the developers, but also the testers on tenterhooks, making them to continuously strive to upgrade their skill set. Even businesses today need to be even more aware of what is best in terms of performance and security. This disruption has been caused by the new technologies, and it is always challenging for testers to overcome the new issues posed by these upcoming technologies.

The Future belongs to Open Source Tools- The next decade will see a lot of Open source tools in action as more and more organizations will adopt them for proper implementation of Agile and Test Automation. Support communities for the open source tools can only become more and more involved and active.

Quality at High speed is the motto- Everyone wants the best products in the fastest possible time. This is making organizations focus on providing the best user experience along with the fastest time to market. The speed is only going to increase and quality is going to better with the latest technologies and tools at the disposal of teams.

Software Development Engineers in Test (SDETs) will be in huge demand- SDETs have been among us since almost a decade, but their role was very different from traditional testers. That said, by early 2020, almost all testers will need to wear an SDET hat to be successful in the field of Test Automation, that is going to become mainstream.

Agile will rule the roost- Agile software testing is quickly becoming the standard, rather than a more advanced approach for software development teams. As that trend picks up speed, many business leaders will likely come to embrace the idea that when it comes to agile, everyone is a tester – even though that’s really not the case, and it’s certainly not the ideal way to optimize agile processes. The erstwhile testing arena is making a shift towards quality engineering, and testing is intended to become more iterative, progressive, and seamlessly integrated with development.

Digital Transformation is here to stay- With a majority of organizations making a foray in the digital world, the need for digital transformation will require a huge shift of focus towards digital testing. Robust strategies for digital assurance will be required for focusing on optimizing functional testing across channels.

BigData Testing will become really BIG- We are sitting atop an explosive amount of BigData today and need to have a very strong strategy around BigData Testing. Testing datasets requires highly analytical tools, techniques, and frameworks, and is an area that is set to grow big.

IoT Heralding an era of Connected Devices- With IoT growing in leaps and bounds, more and more customers rely on IoT Testing before using the products. If the products are not tested, their functionality, security, and effectiveness – all will come under scanner. According to a study, 70 percent of devices in the Internet of Things are vulnerable to security problems.

DevOps will drive Quality Engineering- DevOps ideology is based on seamless collaboration and integration between the different departments of an IT Organization – developers, quality professionals, and IT professionals. Testing plays a business-critical role as developers are involved not just in the correctness of their code, but also in the testing and overall Quality engineering aspects. DevOps thus is propelling businesses towards greater speeds of deployment and quality assurance and is thus helping them realize higher returns on investment and faster time to market in a cost-efficient manner.

Performance Engineering is replacing Performance Testing– Consistent performance across diverse platforms, OSs, and devices defines how much of a market can a product really capture. The need to provide the best experience to users is making organizations change their strategy. They are now moving away from just providing Performance tests to providing Performance engineering.

Software Testing Budgets will continue to grow- It is but obvious that with such huge focus and demand for high quality products, and with major IT trends such as BigData analytics, Cloud Technologies, Mobility, and Virtualization, Testing has become more than just a need. This will push the organizations towards allocating a bigger chunk of their IT budget (around 40%) for software testing and QA.

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Testing is a vast subject. Software applications and systems are engineered for numerous domains and industries. A tester has to understand the client’s point of view and the domain before moving on with testing activities so; every testing project is a new challenge. A tester may have to change the testing methodologies from project to project. It is therefore very important to keep the fundamentals right. To become successful in software testing, getting the fundamentals right in the first place is biggest prerequisite.


By developers, errors, defect or bugs can be caused. It is quite possible for a developer to misunderstand and implement wrong logic and produce wrong code. Since testing helps us in identifying the faults in software, it is necessary. Defects can be easily rectified and quality of the software can be improved once these defects have been detected. A quality conscious company will definitely include software testing in its best practices.


Who should actually test the software? Why developers are not allowed to test? Before a code is submitted for testing, a developer checks it several times and still in most cases it is never error free. A tester looks at software from the point of view of the client. A tester is unbiased and focuses only on the specifications and the requirements. A testing is always carried out by an independent testers and a tester is able to look into areas that a developer may have ignored.

But this approach has some disadvantages, because there is often a communication gap when the development and testing teams are different and they think that it is all a tester’s job and become careless towards coding and do not revise the code thereby increasing the burden on the tester.

There should have a good understanding about the project requirements for a tester. It is very important to know what has to be really tested in order to devise a testing strategy.

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It is very difficult to rectify defects once the software has reached the final stages of development, so starting testing in the later stages of development can turn out to be an expensive. It would be easier for the developers to complete the project on time if testing team starts testing the software earlier and it will also save a lot of time, money and effort. Divide software development into stages. Then in every stage before moving on to the next stage testing work done helps in finishing the software development in time with good results.


software testing

How often you need to test depends on how important the quality is for you. Ideally, testing should go hand in hand with development and a tester should focus on discovering maximum number of defects during the initial phases of software development so that if the design of the software requires any changes then it can be done early as it will be very difficult and expensive to make major changes in the project during the later stages of development.


software testing

To measure how easily a software system can be tested, Software testability is used. To find out how many resources will be needed to finish the testing process, Testability is calculated in the early phases of software development. Testability plays a significant role in identifying the key areas where bugs remain hidden from a tester’s view, while testing helps in uncovering defects. When lower testability means that the testing effort should be increased and testability is high it means that testing is easier. Testability can be determined by:

Simplicity: There is less to test when the design is self-consistent. Features are not very complex and coding practices are simple. It becomes difficult to test when the software is not simple anymore.

Stability: There will be lot of disruptions in software testing, if too many changes are made to the design now and then.

Information: Efficiency of testing greatly depends on how much information is available for the software.