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Every business has three crucial aspects related to any project – Quality, Cost & Time. High-Quality output is the main focus of every project and this can be achieved by controlling the cost and the time required for completing the project.
To keep up with customer preferences and stay competent in the market every business requires a focused approach, which helps in continuous development and delivery/deployment of business-critical cloud-based applications across different platforms.
Here DevOps and Automation play a key role to speed up the process.
Test automation is the process of executing test cases while testing the software with the help of some automation tools in order to find defects/bugs. It can also be defined as the process of automating manual test case execution. The test automation software is responsible for entering test data into the system under test, comparing the expected and actual results and finally generating the detailed test reports. In this process, generating test reports after executing the test scripts are performed automatically by automation tools.
DevOps is an extended form of the agile development process where simultaneously development and testing of software takes place.
The word ‘DevOps’ is a combination of two words – [ dev + ops = development + operations]
DevOps promotes collaboration between Development and Operations team to deploy code to production faster in an automated & repeatable way.
In most of the software development and releases Time and Quality matters a lot. DevOps and automation help in achieving this. Automation in a DevOps environment is relatively new to the industry and is growing up speedily.
The reason is; it promotes continuous integration and communication between the project application development team and the systems operations team resulting in the development of faster and better software.
The Three main reasons to consider while integrating automated testing into DevOps are:
• Automated Testing Saves Time
• Automated Testing Ensures Quality
• Automated Testing Reduces Cost
The ideology behind implementing DevOps in an automated environment is that the integration, deployment, and improvement of software application are continuous. A combined DevOps team is formed from multiple teams working together, thus it has a great impact not only on QA but also on Development, Operations, production support, etc.
• QA is required to align their efforts in the DevOps cycle.
• They have to make sure that all their test cases are automated and achieve near 100% code coverage.
• They need to make sure that their environments are standardized and the deployment on their QA boxes is automated.
• All their pre-testing tasks, cleanups, post-testing tasks, etc. are automated and aligned with the Continuous Integration cycle.
• Quick and fast delivery of software
• Stable operating environments
• Detecting and correcting defects early and fast.
• Transparency and Collaboration across teams
• Continuous development, deployment and release.
• Continuous testing
• Continuous monitoring
• Reduced time to market
• Improved quality
Many of the limits of test automation under DevOps are really just limits of test automation in general:
• Test cases and their execution are not totally proofs of correctness
• Test suits may be incomplete
• Requirements are often not correct and contain some errors
These limitations are the major challenges while performing testing in DevOps organizations. It’s more interesting to consider test limitations specific to DevOps:
• Keeping focus only on automated test cases and excluding other
• Particularly rapid cycling
• Production issues and their sensitivity
• Totally dependent on strong testing
• More transparency and less isolation between teams and management
The best thing to do to save time and money while increasing the quality and time to market is to integrate automation testing with DevOps. Yes, it’s true that it costs a lot of effort to set up automation. But once done right, this will be a huge investment for which you won’t regret.
Automation with DevOps is the future. Its continuous improvement model helps software development to undergo important changes from time-to-time. You just need to hold, understand and train it.
All these concepts essentially remain the same. The core of a successful DevOps cycle is more and more automation. But, as a QA you should also be able to differentiate how much automation is required for proper handling and executing the software processes.