Fixing bugs at a late stage of the software development lifecycle is very costly and time-consuming. Worst case, developers have to redesign the application. The principle of ‘Shift-Left’ assists the testers to collaborate with all the stakeholders much earlier in the software development life Cycle. Hence, they can clearly understand the requirements, software design, architecture, […]
Fixing bugs at a late stage of the software development lifecycle is very costly and time-consuming. Worst case, developers have to redesign the application. The principle of ‘Shift-Left’ assists the testers to collaborate with all the stakeholders much earlier in the software development life Cycle. Hence, they can clearly understand the requirements, software design, architecture, coding and functionality to provide feedback whenever possible and enables the team to identify the defects even before coding is done.
There are several benefits that can be obtained by adopting a Shift-Left strategy such as:
The process focuses more on Unit Testing and Integration Testing. This is done using unit testing and Integration testing, which is achieved by using API testing and utilizing Automation testing tools (ex.: Selenium). In order to understand the traditional Shift-Left testing approach, you first must understand the traditional V-Model in a Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). It is an extension of the Waterfall model. Therefore, it is also known as the Verification and Validation model. This means that there is directly associated testing for every single phase in the Software Development Life Cycle.
Incremental shift-left testing is popular when developing large, complex systems, especially those incorporating significant amounts of hardware. In such cases, it becomes difficult to manage all the tasks together. Hence, they are divided into smaller bits. These bits are built upon each other, and with each increment, the software is also delivered to the customer. After each delivery, the developmental testing and operational testing are incrementally shifted to the left. Now, this helps even the testing teams as they can test each of the individual bits. The red dashed arrows indicate the Shift-Left since the bits of the large V Model is shifted left to become increments of the corresponding types of testing in the smaller incremental V Models.
This type of Shift-Left testing is usually carried out in a number of sprints. It ensures continuous testing via an evolutionary life cycle of many smaller sprints. Agile testing is typically restricted to developmental testing and does not include operational testing, which occurs once the system is placed into operation. The transition to Agile/DevOps shift-left testing is currently common and ongoing.
The basic idea behind the Shift-Left testing is to catch bugs early before it is too late. The previous types concentrated on testing earlier in the Software Development Life Cycle. However, they all test after software exists and seek to find out only implementation defects. In Model-based testing, the shift begins testing almost immediately (starts in the requirements phase), instead of waiting a long time (traditional testing), medium time (incremental testing), or a short time (Agile/DevOps), so bugs are identified and solved long before the software development Life cycle begins.
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