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Monday, April 9, 2012

What are different aspects of error seeding?

There are so many issues associated with the so called bugs and errors! A good tester needs to be well aware about all the terms and issues associated with the errors and bugs.

Errors are the worst nightmare a tester and developer can get since an error might have a great potential to disrupt the functional of the whole of the software system or application and it may also introduce new error in a chain in to the program making it even more cumbersome to be tracked.

This article is focussed up on one of the terms associated with the errors and bugs namely “error seeding”.

You must be quite familiar with what is actual seeding?
Seeding is the process of sowing seeds that when grow up will become plants. Similarly from the term “error seeding” itself we can make out that it is the process of adding or sowing the faults in the software program intentionally so that the rate of detection and the removal of the error can be evaluated.

About Error Seeding

- One thing should be kept in mind which is that the errors to be injected in to the program must be known otherwise it will again become a problem for the tester.

- In many of the cases the error seeding methodology is employed to calculate the number of the errors that are still remaining in the program code.

- The error is intentionally injected in to the source code of the software system or application for the purpose of determination of the rate of discovery of the error which is very crucial for the software testing process.

- Knowing the rate of error detection can help a tester know what’s wrong with the testing methodologies he/ she is using and how they can be improved up on.

Uses of Error Seeding Method

Apart from just being used for the determination of the detection rate, this methodology is helpful in the below mentioned tasks also:

1. It is used to evaluate the skills of the tester of error finding.
2. It is used for the evaluation the ability of the application to survive the errors persisting in it
3. It is used to determine the ease with which the discovered bugs can be fixed up without blocking the work flow of the software system or application.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Error seeding

- Error seeding involves the seeding in of the errors and bugs.

- After the seeding of the errors, several test cases are executed and the ratio between the artificial errors and the actual errors is calculated based on the total number of errors that are detected.

- Normal test cases that are designed for any other error detection methodology can be used for error seeding.

- However the error seeding methodology is quite inefficient as compared to other methodologies like mutation testing. But, it takes lesser time to be completed and is very economical to be carried out.

- However inefficient it may be, it is always a better option of the programs with a lengthier source code. The defects that are injected in to the code have non trivial severity.

- The percentage of the seeded defects injected during the testing can bethought of as a reasonable predictor of the effectiveness of the methodology.

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