QA blog postings

QA Postings - Page 1

Earliest: November 26, 2017Latest: June 9, 2021Total: 148
June 9, 2021

Automation

Automation Logo

Automation is not testing it's checking.

What is Automation?

Automation makes hunmans more efficient, not less essentials

Automation is not a silver bullet - it won't immediately increase productivity, but if approached correctly, it will eventually support increase releases, greater test coverage, and overall quality of the product.

The Great Debate?

There's this debate in the testing community on the purpose of automation.

There's one group that talks about how automation is testing. They argue that automation tests to make sure that the build is stable and any changes doesn't break existing functionality.

There's a different group that says automation is checking. They argue that automation is only checking predefined paths and not testing situations that may be unique to the change being made. While critical paths may be working, some other functionality may be broken.

Team Checking

I am with the team checking. I believe that the purpose of automation is to check the stability of the build. Once automation passes, QA can perform manual testing.

Automation can be limited to the scope of checking/validating. In my experience, it can be tricky to automation 3rd party integration. Manual testing can be more effective in validating functionality.

Automation Has Value

Saying "Automation is Checking" doesn't change the value of automation. Automation plays a valuable role in the testing process. Don't put your eggs in one basket and solely rely on automation as your testing tool. Automation complements manual testing.

Automation test cases should be designed so that the build/branch is stable for manual testing. It should be checking that the critical paths are working.

Automation Checking

Final Thoughts

There's no such thing as a manual or automated tester. Are you a manual or automated programmer?

June 2, 2021

June QA Images

It's been a while since I added some images to the QA library. Here are some new ones to my growing collection.

Be sure to check out all the QA Images in the QA Image Reference Library

/ Quality Assurance Logo2021
http://www.cryan.com/qa/graphics/2021/QualityAssuranceLogo2021.jpg

/ Reuse Automation Code
http://www.cryan.com/qa/graphics/2021/ReuseAutomationCode.jpg

/ Modern Testing Chalk2021
http://www.cryan.com/qa/graphics/2021/ModernTestingChalk2021.jpg

February 14, 2021

February QA Images

Here are some QA graphics that I created for fun. I did some searching online and was surprised that there are good options to choose from.

Feel free to use these in any email or Wiki page.

QA Rule1
QA Rule 1

Test Better
Test Better

Think Q A
Think QA

The Artof Q A
The Art of QA

Q A Reference Page2021 Email
QA Reference Page

Check out all the QA Images that I have in my QA Library.

December 28, 2020

The Best 2020 QA Posts

It's time to look back at some of the best posts of 2020. (Check out the 2019 Post.)

Top4 Q A Blog Post 2020

  • Slack Tips for QA - (February 11) Some useful tips and tricks to get the most out of Slack.
  • Dynamic Bookmarklets - (June 24) Great way to build a Bookmark that is time based.
  • Letter to the QA Manager - (September 9) An interesting letter that I found. Helpful in understanding the relationship of a QA Engineer and a QA Manager.
  • Best QA Advice - (October 14 ) Some great QA advice that I have gotten over the years.

2021 Goals

I'll keep posting useful QA Tips and Tricks that I learn. Most of the information is around the Software as a Service model.

I don't have any specific content targets. I'll keep the content going through February. I may take a break for some time to think of useful content to post.

December 21, 2020

QA Graphic Collection

Here?s some new graphics for the QA library. All month long, I have been collecting and using some QA memes.

Be sure to check out the entire QA graphic collection.

Developers Test Their Code

Quickstart Bug

Snoopy Welcome To Release Day

Release On Fire

December 14, 2020

Yagni

Yagni is an abbreviation for ?You Aren?t Gonna Need It,? referring to code that does not add functionality to pass tests or meet requirements.

YAGNI

Four Reasons QA Should Be Aware of Yagni

Makes Code Hard to Read - Developers may leave unused code - perhaps for their testing or design process. When someone else picks up the code it could cause confusion as to what the functionality is doing. This is true for QA as sometimes they need to read the code review to understand how to unique exploratory testing around the functionality.

Removed QA-Only Code - Developers may add code to help QA validate certain functionality. This should get removed from the code, not commented out. This way the code doesn't accidentally get activated.

Adds Risk to the Code - If it's not part of the feature, then there's no reason it should go out in production. Keeping Yagni code in could open a back door to your application.

Applies to QA Test Plan - Check your test case repository. Are there tests that fit into the Yagni principle? Why are they are part of your test plan? Clear it out so that your tests don't look so overwhelming.

Interesting Side-Note

According to Google translate Yagni is Turkish for "That is."

December 7, 2020

Throw it over the wall

Some Developers use QA as their testing environment without testing their code first. In some situations, if the code compiled they thought it was safe for QA to test.

In software development, this is known as ?throw it over the wall? testing. Developers feel that the Change is so small - they just give it to QA to test it.

Throw It Over The Wall

Not a Good idea

Bad news - that?s not what QA is for. At least not in an agile environment.

Developers shouldn't be sending code to QA without having some sanity testing. They should at least know that the change they are making are working.

Yes they should be testing their code.

What Should QA Be Use For?

QA should be used to test security risks, performance issues, vulnerability, and usability. It shouldn?t be the front line of any testing.

Developers should always be testing their code. They should have accountability for how their code works.

November 30, 2020

November Graphics

Here are some more QA based graphics that I am adding to the QA Image Library.

If there's anything you like to see, let me know!

Jira You Have Issues
Jira Because - You Have Issues

Tell QA
Billboard - Don't Tell QA

Test Code Billboard
Test Your Code on a street billboard - QA reminding you to test your code before handing it to them.

Quality Stability Firepower
Quality, Stability through superior firepower.

November 23, 2020

QA Release Checklist

Release time can be a crazy time for QA. There are always things going on, from last-minute issues discovered by QA to last-minute infrastructure changes for security purposes.

It?s really easy for QA team leads to get distracted and forget some of the essentials that need to happen for a release to be deployed successfully.

QA Checklist

QA Checklist to the Rescue

The easy solution is to keep a release checklist. Something that will help you remember key things before a release gets deployed.

There?s no ?one checklist fits all.? You should create a checklist that works best for your environment.

The nice thing about the checklist is that it acts as a release journal. If there are deployment issues, you can make notes on what to do in future releases.

Example Checklist Items

  • All QA team members signed off on the release
  • Automation Pass
  • Automation total run time is acceptable
  • All Critical Paths have been tested
  • Release Branch matches the test branch
  • Database migrators have no locking vulnerability

Checklist Stationary

You can use any digital software to create the checklist: Evernote, Microsoft Word, Notepad ...

I would recommend a paper solution. That way you can focus your computer screens on the release.

The checklist can be next to your keyboard - reminding you of all critical tasks.

I would highly recommend getting the Emergent Task Planner and using that as your checklist. It?s really well put together. You can build a timeline of when sign-offs have to occur before the release is deployed.

November 16, 2020

Unhelpful Error Messages

Someone on Twitter asked:

What?s the most unhelpful error message you?ve ever seen?

I couldn't think of anything right away, so I search my collection on Google Photos, and I found two that I thought are worth sharing.

Apple Error

Bad Big Sur Install

This is there that I am now getting while trying to install Big Sur on my iMac. There?s no indication of what I should do next.

There are plenty of websites that give some clues on what to try. Most of the advice is around some technical issues that Apple had during the original rollout. However, I am still encountering the issues - many days later.

Still working on finding what this error means. Hopefully, this gets fixed soon, and it doesn't involve formatting my computer!

Flavia Coffee Pot Error.

Bad Flavia Message

This is an error that appeared on a coffee machine at work. Multiple people have to get involved to fix this issue. Phone calls were made to the coffee company to report Error 328.

Turns out the problem is with a stuck freshpack. I found a website that explains how to fix the error.

It would have been so much better to say something like, "Clear the Stuck Freshpack."

Note: This isn't a problem anymore as the company has moved on to a machine that makes single-serve coffee with the need for K-cups or Freshpacks.