Configuration Testing

What is Configuration Testing?

Configuration testing is a special variant of Software testing to test the performance of a software product on a machine with different hardware or software configurations namely, operating system, browser, supported drivers, etc.

Things to do before Configuration Testing

  1. Creation of coverage matrix: Before testing it's necessary to build a wide ranging matrix of all the platforms or configurations and also the most recent of upgrades on which the software product is required to be tested for glitch free working.
  2. Prioritise the configurations: It's next to impossible to test the configuration testing on all the platforms, for all variants of operating systems and browsers. Therefore it makes sense to list down the most critical of configurations based on client and user feedback.

Conduction of Configuration Testing

Hardware Configuration Testing

This form of configuration testing is carried out in labs. The labs have all the machines with varied hardware configurations. A testable version of the software to be released is installed on each machine in the lab and a suit of tests is performed. Since setting up a test lab with heavy duty costly machines can be hard on the pocket, many companies outsource the task of running hardware configuration testing to organisations which specialise in carrying out this form of testing.

Software Configuration Testing

This requires a virtual system to be installed on a host machine. A virtual system consists of a virtual hard drive which after installation on a host machine can simulate a real software configuration. Such virtual systems are installed for testing different software configurations on a host machine. There are many paid as well as freely available virtual systems in the market. Some of them are Virtual PC for Microsoft platforms and Virtual Box for UNIX platforms.

Executing Tests with Other Configurations

There are other platforms which require to be tested for configurations, such as:

  1. OS configuration testing: All software products need to be tested on the n number of Operating systems released by Microsoft namely, Win XP, Win 8, etc.
  2. Browser configuration testing: Some of the popular browsers for which configuration testing is prioritised are opera mini, UC browser and Mozilla Firefox.