Complete software testing life cycle process (STLC)

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Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC)

Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC) is a sequence of specific activities conducted during the testing process to ensure software quality goals are met. STLC involves both verification and validation activities. Contrary to popular belief, Software Testing is not just a single/isolate activity, i.e. testing. It consists of a series of activities carried out methodologically to help certify your software product. STLC stands for Software Testing Life Cycle.

Characteristics of STLC:

  • STLC is a fundamental part of Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) but STLC consists of only the testing phases.
  • STLC starts as soon as requirements are defined or software requirement document is shared by stakeholders.
  • STLC yields a step-by-step process to ensure quality software.

In the initial stages of STLC, while the software product or the application is being developed, the testing team analyzes and defines the scope of testing, entry and exit criteria and also the test cases. It helps to reduce the test cycle time and also enhance the product quality.
As soon as the development phase is over, testing team is ready with test cases and start the execution. This helps in finding bugs in the early phase.

There are following six major phases in every Software Testing Life Cycle Model (STLC Model):

  1. Requirement Analysis
  2. Test Planning
  3. Test case development
  4. Test Environment setup
  5. Test Execution
  6. Test Cycle closure
  1. Requirement Analysis:
    Requirement Analysis is the first step of Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC). In this phase quality assurance team understands the requirements like what is to be tested. If anything is missing or not understandable then quality assurance team meets with the stakeholders to better understand the detail knowledge of requirement.
     
  2. Test Planning:
    Test Planning is most efficient phase of software testing life cycle where all testing plans are defined. In this phase manager of the testing team calculates estimated effort and cost for the testing work. This phase gets started once the requirement gathering phase is completed.
  3. Test Case Development:
    The test case development phase gets started once the test planning phase is completed. In this phase testing team note down the detailed test cases. Testing team also prepare the required test data for the testing. When the test cases are prepared then they are reviewed by quality assurance team.
  4. Test Environment Setup:
    Test environment setup is the vital part of the STLC. Basically test environment decides the conditions on which software is tested. This is independent activity and can be started along with test case development. In this process the testing team is not involved. either the developer or the customer creates the testing environment.
  5. Test Execution:
    After the test case development and test environment setup test execution phase gets started. In this phase testing team start executing test cases based on prepared test cases in the earlier step.
  6. Test Closure:
    This is the last stage of STLC in which the process of testing is analyzed.

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