A test comparator is a tool to automate the process of comparison between the actual and expected results produced by a software product at the time of software testing. This automation of comparison can take place during the testing procedure or after the testing procedure is complete.
What are the Different Functions of Test Comparators?
At the time of time of test execution, there is a need to carry out a comparative analysis of changes which are of a transitory nature. A test comparator enables such an analysis.
To do a post test execution comparative analysis of accumulated data present in databases or records.
To obtain a choice based filtration of data in the aftermath of comparison of the expected and actual results pertaining to test execution.
To track changes in files and folders
Some of the widely used test comparators such as Examdiff allow comparison of local websites with FTP servers.
What to Test :
Test automation tools do cater to tasks such as test data creation, GUI interaction, problem detection, defect logging, product installation etc. Apart from all such requirements, testers must consider the following aspects while testing :
Operating system and platform independence.
Customizable Reports like preparing crystal reports, database access etc.
Easy debugging and logging of bugs.
Email notification support.
Support for distributed execution environment.
What are the different types of Test Comparators?
Test comparators are primarily of two types:
Dynamic Test Comparators: Here the comparison of test results is done in a dynamic scenario i.e. the comparison is done while the tests are being executed. Dynamic test comparators are useful in those scenarios where the actual inference does not match the actual or expected inference at a time when the product is in the midst of a test cycle and an urgent recovery action is the need of the hour.
Static Test Comparators: Here the comparison of test results is done in a static environment i.e. when the software product under test is no longer running. The comparison of test results takes place after all the test cases have been executed. Static test comparators are generally useful for comparison of enormous amount of data. For instance, verifying the records of a database with the similar or expected data of those records.