System Integration Testing: A Complete Guide
This blog offers an exhaustive overview of System Integration Testing, including its purpose, process, and best practices.
Through this blog, you will better understand System Integration Testing and how to validate the interactions between system components and the outside world. Now let’s start with a short definition of SIT!
Table Of Contents
- 1 What is System Integration Testing?
- 2 Why System Integration Testing?
- 3 Advantages of System Integration Testing
- 4 Disadvantages of System Integration Testing
- 5 Prerequisites of System Integration Testing
- 6 Process for System integration testing
- 7 System integration testing techniques
- 8 When to automate your integration testing?
- 9 Wrapping up
- 10 Frequently Asked Questions
What is System Integration Testing?
System Integration Testing (SIT) is a crucial software testing technique to assess individual modules’ seamless interaction and functionality within a larger system. The development team conducts SIT at the end of the software development cycle to ensure optimal performance of the combined system and meet the client’s expectations.
This testing approach comprises a black box, smoke, and regression testing. By identifying any issues caused by integrating new components or changes to existing ones, SIT helps to ensure that the entire system functions efficiently.
Why System Integration Testing?
System integration testing is essential for achieving a successful and high-quality product, as it helps ensure that all the individual components of the system are working together correctly.
Advantages of System Integration Testing
Let’s look at a few advantages of system integration testing now.
- Improves reliability by detecting and fixing defects early
- Validates system performance, scalability, and usability
- Supports effective cooperation between development and testing teams
- Provides a complete view of system functionality
- Increases customer satisfaction and devotion by delivering high-quality products.
Disadvantages of System Integration Testing
SIT is an essential part of the software development process but has some drawbacks that must be considered.
- Cost: System integration testing can be costly and laborious due to the intricacy of the systems under examination and the requirement for specialized equipment and personnel.
- Resource Consumption: System integration tests consume many resources, including humans, time, hardware, and software. When managing several systems at once might be challenging.
- Risk of Data Loss: Integration tests may lead to data loss if not conducted correctly or if one of the tested systems contains a fault.
- Difficulty in Troubleshooting: In case of a problem arising during system integration testing, it can be challenging to pinpoint the exact cause due to its potential connection with multiple systems or components.
We spoke about the upsides and downsides of system integration testing. Yet, it depends on your familiarity and skill in conducting the many tests relevant to your product.
Prerequisites of System Integration Testing
Below are some recommendations for what to do before you start executing your system integration tests:
- Have a clear understanding of the business requirements.
- Make sure the team and stakeholders are on the same page about the expectations from the integration tests.
Process for System integration testing
System integration testing’s main objective is ensuring the system’s various elements work together and deliver accurate results. The team should take the following steps to execute system integration testing:
Step 1 – Plan the System Integration Test: Planning the system integration test helps identify the objectives of the test, the components of the system that need to be tested, the types of tests to be conducted, and the expected results.
Step 2 – Identify the Test Environment: The second step involves identifying the test environment. It is essential to ensure that the test environment is similar to the production environment to ensure that the tests represent the actual system.
Step 3 – Execute the System Integration Test: This step involves connecting all the components of the system and running tests to ensure that the system is functioning as expected.
Step 4 – Analyze the Test Results: The fourth step involves analyzing the test results. This involves comparing the results of the integration test to the expected results.
Step 5 – Document the Test Results: We all know documentation is essential in all the steps. This step involves creating a report outlining the test results of identified issues and suggestions for further testing or changes.
Step 6 – Make Required Changes: This step involves fixing the reported bugs and implementing the reported suggestion to ensure the system functions as expected.
Step 7 – Retest the System: The seventh step, retesting the system, is essential to ensure that the changes have been made correctly and that the system functions as expected.
System integration testing techniques
Here are the four methods you may use to do system integration testing:
- Top-Down Testing Method: This technique starts with the highest-level module and works through the lower-level modules. It requires the integration of modules in a top-down fashion so that higher levels of modules are tested first.
- Bottom-Up Testing Method: This technique starts with the lowest-level modules and works through higher-level modules. It requires the integration of modules in a bottom-up fashion so that the lower-level of modules are tested first.
- Sandwich/Mixed Testing Method: Sandwich integration testing is a hybrid integration testing method that combines top-down and bottom-up integration testing methods. In sandwich integration, sub-modules are tested in addition to the top-level modules, while the top-level modules are integrated with the sub-modules for testing.
- Big Bang Testing Method: This technique involves testing all the modules together. The modules are integrated and tested simultaneously.
When to automate your integration testing?
Integration testing should be automated when the integration tests are complex and require a lot of data setup and verification. Because we know Automation can
- Save time,
- Reduce errors, and
- Make it easier to run tests regularly.
Automating integration testing also makes detecting bugs and regressions in the system easier.
Top 3 tools to automate integration testing
Selecting suitable integration testing tools is necessary to implement the integration testing process effectively. The following three tools are among the most popular for Integration Testing:
Testsigma offers automation capabilities to help you quickly set up automated integration tests. Some of its top features are:
- Testsigma is a no-code test automation tool that supports test case creation in simple English; test cases are as easy to create as writing sentences in English. In addition, it also lets you record your test steps.
- It lets you automate web, mobile, APIs, and desktop tests from the same place. Thus your integration tests covering all these platforms can be executed easily.
- It provides a wide suite of features that allow users to create test cases, set up test environments, run tests, analyzes results, and generate reports.
- Testsigma also allows users to integrate with bug-tracking systems, so any issues discovered during testing can be tracked and addressed quickly.
- The platform is designed to make it easier for teams to collaborate on projects.
- By using automated tools like Testsigma, businesses can start saving time and money from day.
TOSCA stands for “Topology and Orchestration Specification for Cloud Applications” and was developed by Tricentis, an Austrian software company. This software testing tool assists in creating automated tests for various applications. Some of its top features that can improve integration testing are:
- Supports automation of tests for complex systems.
- Tosca is compatible with various applications, including Salesforce, SAP, Web, PowerBuilder, DotNet, Mainframe, and Mobile Devices.
- A model-based approach to simplify test case creation and management
- A collaborative framework for testers to communicate seamlessly
- Generates detailed reports and metrics
If you’re in the market for an integration testing tool, then Ranorex is worth considering.
Some of its top features that can help improve your integration testing efforts are:
- Its cross-browser testing capabilities
- Support for multiple platforms, including Windows, iOS, and Android.
- Intuitive interface with drag-and-drop functionality.
- Support for testing complex scenarios involving third-party APIs and databases.
- Generates detailed reports of each test run for easy identification of issues.
Best practices of System integration testing
Integration testing should be conducted following certain best practices to ensure satisfactory results. These include:
For manual testing
Before you start the test execution:
- Understand the architecture of the system and its components.
- Plan the test strategy and prepare the test cases.
- Design a test environment that accurately reflects the production environment.
- Create test cases to test the integration of each system component with the others.
- Create test data to cover various scenarios.
Once the preparation is done:
- Execute integration tests as per the test cases
- Log defects.
- Monitor the performance of the integrated system.
Before wrapping up, make sure you:
- Re-test after defect resolution.
- Retest for regression after change requests.
- Document the test results.
- Record the performance metrics.
For automated testing
- Choose to automate test cases that focus on integration points between different systems.
- Make sure that all automated test cases cover all interfaces.
- Give priority to test cases that simulate real-world scenarios.
- Also, keep track of the performance parameters during the tests.
- Automate end-to-end tests to ensure that data is being processed correctly.
- Execute the automated test cases frequently to ensure no bugs emerge after new fixes.
In conclusion, System Integration Testing is a necessary stage in software development. It ensures that all the different components of the system work together seamlessly and efficiently. By carefully studying all tests and documents, the system can be launched confidently, knowing it will work as intended. Ultimately, system integration testing helps ensure the success of software projects and end-users satisfaction.
Automating the integration test cases is recommended when they are too complex to be executed manually or repeatedly. Testsigma is a tool that can help automate system integration tests easily as it supports the automation of web, mobile, desktop, and API tests from one place. Also, it’s a no-code test automation tool that lets you start your test automation within minutes. Thus, it is well-suited for agile methodologies for software development.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the 5 system integration methods?
- Big Bang Integration
- Incremental Integration
- Top-Down Integration
- Bottom-Up Integration
- Sandwich Integration
What is system integration testing in Agile?
Agile is when software development happens in multiple iterations, and at the end of every iteration, a usable product is developed. Thus, for agile – the system integration testing will have to be executed at the end of every such iteration.
What is System Integration Testing vs. UAT?
System Integration Testing (SIT) is a type of software testing that verifies that all of the components of a system work together as one unit. It differs from User Acceptance Testing (UAT) in that SIT focuses on the system as a whole, ensuring that all of the different parts of the system are working together correctly. In contrast, UAT focuses on the user experience and how the system behaves when used.