INCONSISTENT DATA

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Issue summary

The data needed for the automated test cases changes unpredictably

Category

Design

Examples

  • Test data is obtained by anonymising customer data. This has some major disadvantages:
    - The data must by anonymised (this can be tricky)
    - You must be able to use different IDs or search criteria for every run
    - you probably won't get just the data combination that you need for a special test case and if you add it, it will be overwritten next time you get a new batch of customer data
    - different input data means different output data, so it will be more difficult to compare results
  • Test automation shares databases with testing or development
  • After an update to the Software Under Test (SUT) the data is not compatible any longer
  • Tests alter the data for following tests

Questions

How do you collect the necessary data?

Resolving Patterns

Most recommended:

  • FRESH SETUP should help you in most cases
  • DEDICATED RESOURCES: look up this pattern if you have to share resources
  • WHOLE TEAM APPROACH: if your team follows an agile development process this is the pattern to use in order to avoid this kind of problems from the beginning


Other useful patterns:


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