Let’s understand the significance of compatibility and compatibility testing with the assistance of the following discussion.
Oxford dictionary defines the term compatibility as “ a state in which two things are able to exist or occur together without problem or conflict.” Likewise, software compatibility can also be defined as a software’s ability to perform and function with other systems and devices without any difficulty or hassle. This component of a software is extremely vital and is verified with the assistance of compatibility testing.
A significant part of software testing life cycle (STLC), compatibility testing is a non-functional testing technique, which is generally performed to validate and verify the compatibility of the developed software product or website with various other objects, such as other web browsers, hardware platforms, users, operating systems, etc. Performed during the early stages of quality assurance, compatibility testing enables the team to ensure that the compatibility requirements, requested by the client, are fulfilled and inbuilt in the end product.
Furthermore, compatibility testing enables the team to deliver a software product that works seamlessly across various configurations of the software’s computing environments and offers consistent experience and performance across all platforms and to all users.
As stated earlier, compatibility testing is a type of testing that allows a software to work appropriately across and with various devices and platforms, which further helps the team to deliver a software that offers impeccable performance and user experience. Moreover, this type of testing can be categorized into 8 different categories, which are mentioned below:
The hardware compatibility testing validates the compatibility of the software with various other hardware configurations and ensures its accuracy.
During this type of compatibility testing, the software compatibility is tested with different operating systems, such as Mac OS X, Windows, UNIX, etc.
This type of testing is implemented to check the compatibility of the software with different software.
While performing network compatibility test, the team evaluates the performance of a system in a network with varying parameters, such as bandwidth, operating speed, capacity, etc. Additionally, it verifies the application in different networks with the assistance of these parameters.
In this type of testing, the team verifies whether the built software or website is compatible and works properly with various browsers like IE, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, etc.
IThis is done to check the software’s compatibility with different devices such as printers, scanners, bluetooth, and USBs.
Mobile compatibility test checks the compatibility of the software product with various mobile devices of different operating systems and sizes, such as iOS, Android and more.
With the assistance of version compatibility test, the team verifies whether the software application is compatible with different versions of the software. This is further ensured through two of compatibility testing, which will be discussed below.
To ensure the compatibility of the built software product with various versions and platforms, two types of compatibility testing is used by the team of testers- backward compatibility testing and forward compatibility testing.
The process of compatibility testing is an easy one and can be executed manually or with the assistance of numerous compatibility testing tools available in the industry. This process involves four important stages, which are:Platform/Environment Identification: The initial step of the process is to identify and define the set of platform and environments that the application has to work on.
Nowadays, when software products are being developed in abundance, it is important for them to be perfect and effective to garner the attention of the users as well as the IT industry. Therefore, reasons for compatibility testing are numerous and without implementing it during software testing life cycle it is difficult to guarantee the compatibility as well as the performance and functionality of the software. Therefore, following are some of the reasons for performing compatibility testing:
During the process of compatibility testing, the team encounters a variety issues and defects, which become a major hurdle in providing remarkable and effective software compatibility. Hence, here is a list of defects and issues majorly encountered by the team, while performing compatibility testing.
Compatibility testing is an important testing process, that offers numerous advantages and benefits to the testers, some of which are mentioned below:
When it comes to executing the process of compatibility testing, there are multifarious tools available in the market that can be utilized by the team of testers to validate the compatibility of the software. Some of the most popular tools used by testers worldwide for compatibility testing are:
Compatibility testing, without any doubt, is one of the most important software testing technique, that is used by software testers around the world to verify and validate the compatibility of a software across various platforms and with multifarious devices. Moreover, it helps improve the reputation of organizations and enables them to serve their customers and clients effectively. Hence, perform compatibility testing and ensure superior user experience.