Earlier for testing software products, the one and only method used was manual testing, in which the human itself find defects in the software. The tester performing the manual test acts as an end user who is allowed to use all of the software features and verifies its behaviour.
By the advancement in the technology, automated testing came in existence which involves a testing tool (i.e, a software program) to test the software’s output against its expected output.
The manual and automated testing has its respective advantages and disadvantages. Although manual testing is quite a time consuming and costly as compared to automation testing, that is the reason the automated testing is more superior than manual testing.
Content: Manual Testing Vs Automated Testing
|Basis for comparison||Manual Testing||Automated Testing|
|Basic||Testing is performed by humans manually.||Testing is done through the hardware/software automatically.|
|Precision and reliability||Moderate and susceptible to errors.||High|
|Cost||Low, for a short duration.||High, but for a long period it's cost effective.|
|Used for||Exploratory, usability and ad-hoc testing.||Regression, performance and load testing.|
|Human action||Required||Not involved|
|User experience||Improves the customer experience||Positive customer experience is not assured.|
Definition of Manual Testing
The Manual testing is nothing but a testing method which requires the human intervention to conduct the software testing. The system is tested by the supervision of the people who are responsible for preparing, inserting and utilizing the outcome of processing from the software systems instead of producing and entering the test transaction into the system. Here, the tester writes test cases, provides the inputs, examine the expected and actual output, and record results.
It first checks the interface between the software system and the end user. In other words, it enters in transactions and obtains the results from that processing. Further, it takes additional action according to the information received until all characteristics of the manual computer interface are properly tested.
When is manual testing implemented?
Manual testing is a significant part of the software testing process which must be performed during the whole system development life cycle in order to ensure that the manual systems function properly. However, it is appropriate to conduct manual testing in the following cases as it needs human observatory skills.
- Exploratory Testing – To perform this test the tester must have a good experience, knowledge, logical skills and creativity. Here the tester searches for the badly written specification documentation or it executes faster or not.
- Usability Testing – This test checks for the user-friendliness, efficiency and convenience in the software for the users.
- Ad-hoc Testing – The testing method does not follow any particular approach and carried out in an unplanned manner which only requires experienced and insightful tester.
Definition of Automated Testing
Automated testing uses the softwares to regulate the execution of the tests, compare the resulting output with the predicted output, set up the test preconditions and test reporting functions. It contains a group of experiments or test cases which helps in determining the behaviour of the implementation.
The intervention of the automation in the testing process results in reducing the time required to execute test cases. Automation testing helps test engineers to concentrate on a more crucial task and make the system handle ordinary tasks.
When is the automated testing implemented?
It is better to conduct automated testing in the following areas.
- Regression Testing – It assures that the enhancements and fixes performed over the software works efficiently and does not affect the existing functionality of the software.
- Load Testing – This test simplifies the complications involved in generating the load and simulation of the load conditions.
- Repeated execution –It involves the execution of the single task again and again.
- Performance Testing – It simulates thousand of concurrent users at a time.
What are the different approaches to automation testing?
The three major approaches to automation testing are – Code-Driven, Graphical user interface testing and Test Automation Framework.
- Code-Driven: Concentrates over the various sections of the code and assures whether these sections of code performs accurately in different conditions.
- Graphical User Interface: The applications containing GUI are tested using this method to monitor and record user actions and responses.
- Test Automation Framework: It provides a group of instructions which helps in producing the favourable results against the automated testing activity. The purpose of this framework is to lead different components such as function libraries, object details, test data sources and other modules work in an integrated manner. There are various modules involved such as linear scripting, modular testing, data-driven, hybrid testing and keyword-driven frameworks.
Key Differences Between Manual and Automated Testing
- The prior difference between manual testing and automated is that manual testing is carried out by human whereas automated testing is the testing performed by the software in an automated way.
- Automated testing provides high accuracy and reliability as compared to manual testing.
- Manual testing consumes more time with respect to automated testing.
- The cost of manual testing is less than automated, but when performed for a small amount of period. However, it gives the opposite result when the testing is carried out for a long run. Hence, automated testing is cost-effective because there are no factors of a number of tester involved, tiredness, etcetera.
- Automated testing does not need human actions much but manual testing cannot even possibly be done without human action.
Advantages of Manual Testing
- The generated cost in manual testing is less as automation tools and processes are not required.
- It enables the tester in achieving the full user experience.
- User Interfaces can easily be manually tested.
Advantages of Automated Testing
- Decreases the time consumption of performing repetitive tasks.
- Less number of resources and human effort is required.
- It facilitates regression testing and testing the large sequences of the data.
- The reports produced after the testing provides information about the test execution.
- It can test a large number of users virtually at a time.
- It also helps in analysing the system to check its performance reliability.
Disadvantages of Manual testing
- It is prone to errors as conducted by humans.
- There is no automated record generated in manual testing.
- It is not possible to perform each and every task manually as it would require additional time.
- Frequent alteration in the user scenarios could increase the maintenance cost gradually.
Disadvantages of Automated Testing
- Automated testing is not very flexible, it only does what it is designed to do.
- The tools used in automation are costly.
- To test the user interface, the human element is necessarily required.
- Automation testing tools work according to their limits and this decreases the scope of testing.
- Debugging the test script is also a concern in the automated testing.
Manual testing requires continuous human intervention throughout the testing process. On the contrary, automated testing needs human intervention in the initial stage of testing where the test cases are supplied.