Artifact: Test Suite
This artifact defines a collection of related tests.
Domains: Test
Work Product Kinds: Solution
  • To manage and sequence the execution of tests.
  • To provide a useful and related set of test log information from which test results can be determined.
Main Description

The Test Suite provides a means of managing the complexity of the test implementation. Many system test efforts fail because the team gets lost in the minutia of all of the detailed tests, and subsequently loses control of the test effort. Similar to UML packages, Test Suites provide a hierarchy of encapsulating containers to help manage the test implementation. They provide a means of managing the strategic aspects of the test effort by collecting tests together in related groups that can be planned, managed, and assessed in a meaningful way.

Brief Outline

Each Test Suite needs to consider various aspects, including the following:

  • compatibly and relevance of the individual tests to be executed by the Test Suite, especially in terms of test objective and scope
  • points from which the Test Suite can be recovered or resumed if execution is halted
  • required configuration settings for the Test Suite of both hardware and software; for example, video-display resolution, resource allocation, environment variables, and so forth
  • pre-existing consumables required by the Test Suite, such as populated data sets, receipt printer dockets, and so on
Representation Options

This work product represents a container for organizing arbitrary collections of related tests. This may be realized (implemented) as one or more automated regression Test Suites, but the Test Suite can also be a work plan for the implementation of a group of related manual tests. Note also that Test Suites can be nested hierarchically, therefore one Test Suite may be enclosed within another.

Sometimes these groups of tests will relate directly to a subsystem or other system design element, but other times they'll relate directly to things such as quality dimensions, core "mission critical" functions, requirements compliance, standards adherence, and many others concerns that cut across, or are not directly related to, the internal system elements.

You should consider creating Test Suites that arrange the available Test Scripts-in addition to other Test Suites-in many different combinations: the more variations you have, the more you'll increase coverage and the potential for finding errors. Give thought to a variety of Test Suites that will cover the breadth and depth of the target test items. Remember the corresponding implication that a single Test Script (or Test Suite) may appear in many different Test Suites.

Some test automation tools provide the ability to automatically generate or assemble Test Suites. There are also implementation techniques that enable automated Test Suites to dynamically select all or part of their component Test Scripts for each test cycle run.

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