Archive for category Testing

Two Minute Introduction to the CPM Toolkit

Word has it that a freely available Community Edition of the CPM Toolkit will be released shortly! ETA – within the next couple of weeks. By all accounts, it is going to provide the CPM functionality as laid out in Quest Software’s series of whitepapers on the topic.

Exciting stuff! In the meantime, here is a two minute introductory video to the toolkit to whet you appetite. Enjoy.


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Tech Ed EMEA 2008 Day Three

I had intended to start today with a brisk, rousing discussion on threads, but had to settle for the “Future of Unit Testing”, as the talk was cancelled. I usually prefer very technical talks, in fact the more impenetrable the better. The talk actually turned out to be interesting though and not as fluffy as it might have appeared at first glance. It was given by TypeMock’s, Roy Osherove. TypeMock currently make the best .NET Isolation Framework in my humble opinion, pity it’s a commercial product. It’s hard to justify purchasing software when so many effective, free alternatives are available.
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Microsoft Visual Studio 2008 Team System Test Edition – A Year on

The Test Team at DSI have been using Microsoft Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) 2008 Test Edition for over a year now. We first began using the beta version of the 2008 product late last year and have been consistently relying on the released product for both Web testing and Load testing since then. So now’s as good a time as any to do our ‘Year in the Life’ review of this product and see what we know now, that wasn’t so clear, when we first began using the product.

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Continuous Performance Management in Practise

Over the last week or so you will have seen a couple of blog entries from my colleagues on how we are implementing Continuous Performance Management in our existing CI process and how CI and Application Performance Management are drawing closer and closer.

It’s time to start putting some meat on the bones of Continuous Performance Management and introduce HelloCPM and show how CPM and be integrated into an existing Java module using ANT as it’s build mechanism. Our CPM implementation can work with ANT or Maven, but for the sake of this introduction, we will focus on ANT.

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Data-Driven Unit Testing using Excel in Visual Studio

Data-Driven Unit Tests are very powerful but, it seems to me, rarely used feature in Visual Studio. Although they are not suitable in all situations they can be of a great help. Personally, I used them to drive testing of business rules. In one of the scenarios I had 9 parameters and they had about 900 possible combinations. I was able to cut the number of possible tests and I did so, but the point is that in some scenarios just typing in test data into source code is very laborious and error prone and can be easily avoided.
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Microsoft Visual Studio Database Edition 2008

This evening, I presented to the sql server MTUG in Microsoft, Sanyford. Sql Mtug Group Link .

Thanks to all who attended & Niall and Co. for the invitation.

If you have any questions from the event, feel free to email me –

You can download the presentation here :Microsoft Visual Studio Database Edition 2008 Presentation

Make sure to check out the 2008 Power Tools, Unit Testing and Data Generation !

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Web and Load Testing using Microsoft Visual Studio Team System 2008 Test Edition

At DeCare Systems Ireland (DSI) our software test team is benefitting from the newly released [tag]Microsoft Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) 2008 Test Edition[/tag] which they are using in conjunction with the [tag]Visual Studio Team System 2008 Test Load Agent[/tag] software to web test and load test their [tag].NET[/tag] and [tag]Java[/tag] web-based applications.

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“To automate or not to automate that is the question?”

The DSI Test team attended the latest IT@Cork event hoping to gain some ‘Tricks or Treats’ that they could use to improve their automated test process and they weren’t disappointed. In addition to ‘Tricks and Treats’ Ken Brennock from Insight Test Services also offered some extremely helpful advice and some ‘Tips’, not least, that test automation can be in-valuable in supporting the delivery of quality software BUT only if used strategically.
It seems that even if not used strategically there are some quick wins to be made from test automation as follows:

  • Time and cost savings through improved efficiency,
  • Repeatability and accuracy of execution,
  • Improved test coverage through automated regression test execution,
  • Better visibility and control of the test process,

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10 Tips to Improve your Testing Process – it@cork

We are always on the look-out to improve our testing process so we were delighted to learn that Fran O’Hara from Insight was giving some informative testing tips at the latest it@cork event. Fran’s tips, 10 in total, were aimed in such a way that they provided practical advice to the lay tester so that they could gain high benefit from a low cost input. Fran from Insight outlined some of the reasons that organisations might review their testing process and often when a project has not met expectation or customer commitments then a formal review is performed. A bit of a “too little too late approach”. Those organisations that are pro-active and forward thinking might prefer to have a defined standard for testing or a continuous improvement program that is constantly evolving to meet both their needs and the customer’s needs. Of course there’s very little point reviewing your testing process if the basics are not in place to begin with, but if you are looking for a place to start then some of Insight’s top 10 tips are a must.

Planning Ahead - Ensure at the very least that the organisation has a basic test process in place as it helps to clarify testing responsibilities, overall approach and leads to less headaches. Although you’ll have room for improvement it’s a good start.

Early Days - Getting testers involved at the earliest stage i.e. at requirements gathering stage or even before hand has proven to be beneficial as it’s cheaper to find and correct defects at this stage of the project.

Risky Business - Consider running a Risk Workshop so that the high risk areas are at least identified at the outset. The ‘old Risk versus Reward’ theory comes to mind here.

Focus the Mind - A test strategy will identify what’s to be tested and focuses the mind on what the testers are trying to achieve.

Buy In - Ensure that your Project Managers buy into your testing process.

Communication is Key - Don’t forget to have regular meetings with all of the stakeholders so that items don’t get de-railed.

Overall - We came away feeling that we can use some of the above in our own process. Our Tip #11: Attend more of these presentations for more ‘quick wins’. Were certainly looking forward to the next it@cork presentation entitled ‘Opportunities and Strategies for Test Automation on the 30th October.

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