Visual Basic

User Acceptance Testing

User acceptance testing happens when a tested version of the specified deliverable is made available to a selected number of users who have already received training in the use of the system. In this scenario, the users chosen to perform the tests will be expected to give the system the kind of usage that it will receive in real life. The best way to perform this testing is to get the users to identify an appropriate set of data for the system test and to enter it into the system themselves. This data is most useful if it is real rather than hypothetical. Whatever kind of processing the system performs can then be instigated (for example, printing reports) and the results scrutinized carefully. Ideally, the development and testing team will have little or no input into this process, other than to answer questions and to confirm the existence of any bugs that crop up. Apart from this careful input of prepared data, the system should also be used "normally" for a while to determine the level of confidence that can be attributed to the system. If this confidence level is satisfactory, the system can be signed off and a system rollout can commence. If possible, a partial rollout would initially be preferable-not only for prolonged confidence tests, but also to ease the burden on the support team. These people will encounter more queries as to the use of the system during these early days than at any other time during its lifetime, so if the volume of queries can be spread out, so much the better. It also gives them an idea of the most frequently asked questions so that they can organize their knowledge base accordingly.

Regression Testing

Regression testing is the repetition of previously run tests after changes have been made to the source code. The purpose is to verify that things in the new build still work according to specification and that no new bugs have been introduced in the intervening coding sessions. Although it is impossible to quantify precisely (some have tried), figures that I have come across from time to time suggest that for every ten bugs that are identified and cleared, perhaps another four will be introduced. This sounds like a realistic figure to me, although I would apply it more to process code rather than event handlers, which are more self-contained (which, of course, is a benefit of the object-based model that Microsoft Visual Basic employs). As you continue each test/debug iteration, the overall number of bugs in the code should decrease correspondingly until a shippable product exists.