It is a technique that tests the software product from beginning to end and ensures the application flow behaves as expected. The integration tests define the product’s system dependencies and ensure all integrated pieces work as expected.
End-to-end testing, also known as E2E testing, is a type of system test that runs from the user’s perspective to validate features and scenarios. The purpose of end-to-end (E2E) testing is to test from the perspective of a user with the goal of validating the system and its components for integration and data integrity.
Also, we need to think about One of the dangers of modern software systems is that they are complicated and interconnected. If any subsystem fails, then the whole system might become unstable and crash. It’s important to have all parts of the system tested before release so this doesn’t happen and end-to-end testing can be a useful way to make sure quality isn’t lost during development.
End to End Testing Definition
End to end testing definition with example in simple language:
This is a type of system testing that validates the integration between various parts of an application, including hardware and software components from start to finish.
End To End Testing ensures these elements function as they are supposed to from the perspective of the user from whom they are being delivered. This technique is commonly employed to identify problems with integration and data integrity.
For a better understanding let’s see its definition:
End to end testing can be conducted from the following three different perspectives:
- User Experience end to end testing: It usually starts when you type a search query in google.com and ends when you click a link on the result page. This testing is conducted from user’s perspective or “From outside In” (By testing the application from the view of a user).
- Solution end to end testing: It starts when we make some change in database and ends when that change is reflected in UI. This testing is conducted from developers’ perspective or “From inside Out” (By testing the application from the view of a developer).
- Testing end to end: It starts when we press play button and ends when we stop it. This testing is conducted from tester’s perspective or “From outside In” (By testing the application from the view of a tester).
End-to-end test cases are almost the same as normal functional test cases but they tend to cover more functionality than the normal scenario.
As each step in the software application is executed, it should produce an unambiguous result that matches what users expect and that meets the defined requirement. If a step does not produce the expected result, an error should be noted and recorded in the test results. By observing a series of steps and noting errors at each one, end-to-end testing makes it easier to identify errors when they occur.
End 2 End testing is performed by a test engineer who has knowledge about the software development process. It is a common technique used to test the complex integration of different servers, databases, web services, and other components.
End 2 End testing helps us to test all functionalities in our application from the beginning (starting URL) to the end (last step). We can check that our toolbars are placed correctly on our webpage or make sure that our application or web-based email can send an email message successfully from Outlook.
what is end to end testing?
End-to-end testing verifies an entire business process including error handling, security controls, and performance to ensure that the presented functionality is working as expected in a real-world environment.
To accomplish this both the development team and test team must work together. The development team should provide sufficient detail on how the system will interact with outside entities such as databases, web services, and other enterprise applications. End-to-end tests are those tests that verify the system works as expected when it’s interacting with these external entities.
The test team should understand the development team design and architecture of the target business process and complete user journey testing which includes verifying a scenario from beginning to end in order to verify each individual requirement in a specific business process.
End-to-end testing is developed to test the entire system/software product and each component against requirements in order to verify that each component works as expected. The term end-to-end testing came from the telecom industry where they used this concept for many years before it was transferred into the software development industry.
The most common way to perform end-to-end testing is by executing a series of scenarios from the user’s perspective. These scenarios are usually derived from business requirements or use cases that were identified during the requirement analysis phase of development.
End-to-end tests are often divided into two categories: functional and non-functional.
Functional tests verify that the software performs the functions that support the business process that is being tested. Nonfunctional tests ensure that the actual implementation of these features is meeting business requirements such as performance, capacity, reliability, and security.
The primary objectives for end-to-end testing are to find errors early in the development cycle so they can be corrected before significant time or resources are spent on the implementation of features that do not work as expected.
End-to-end testing is conducted by a team of testers who are responsible for ensuring that all aspects of an application’s functionality meet expectations before the software is released to production. These tests are typically performed in a development or staging environment and can include verification of integration, deployment, and upgrade scenarios.
In the systems development life cycle, end-to-end testing comes after unit testing has been performed. This type of test is conducted to ensure all integrated components are working together correctly and that they are running effectively in a production environment. It can take many forms, including functional or non-functional tests as well as manual or automated tests.
In Manual Testing, manual end-to-end testing is done by putting the connection manually and inspecting/testing each step in the process. In Automated End to End Testing, frameworks using scripting languages like Ruby, Python, etc are used which can simulate multiple user sessions accessing target applications with different sets of data, and finally, it will help in reproducing the same environment.
End to End testing is an approach where tests are performed from a starting point (typically the entry page of an application) and ends at a successful response while covering every possible execution path. Typical end-to-end scenarios may include moving through the user registration process, placing orders, processing payments, and successfully getting order confirmation.
Testing teams should consider how they will transition from their current functional testing approach to one consistent with the concept of end-to-end tests. There are several reasons why testing teams should begin using a more holistic approach to software testing. Some of the reasons include:
End to End testing is not a replacement for functional or regression testing, but it is meant as an extension. Functional and regression tests should still be used in conjunction with end-to-end testing since they are both necessary to ensure that the entire application meets expectations.
end to end testing in agile:
Agile demands frequent delivery of small or medium-size products built by cross-functional teams. This test approach must be capable of supporting Agile development. End-to-end testing requires a high degree of automation. The tests should be able to run unattended and they need to run quickly enough that they can generate results in the limited time available to the team.
end to end testing plan:
planning for end-to-end testing starts with looking at business processes or application activities. An end-to-end test plan should be created that details the activities and user scenarios that will be executed by testers when they conduct functional or regression tests.
This planning step is similar to the process of creating a requirements traceability matrix (RTM). Testing teams may want to sit down with business users or even end-users to gather requirements if they are unfamiliar with the application activities.
end-to-end testing plan template :
A Sample Template for End to End testing plan involves the below elements:
- Objectives of end-to-end tests
- Business users and/or subject matter experts who will be responsible for outlining the scope of end-to-end testing activities
- Application modules or features, including whether any third party or legacy components will be used
- User roles or personas who will be responsible for testing specific products and reporting defects
- Elaboration of the end-to-end processes that users go through as they interact with the application (i.e., business flows)
- Functional / nonfunctional requirements that must be met by the end-to-end tests (i.e., performance, security, scalability, etc.)
- Test suites whose results will be monitored by the test management tool to indicate when one or more of the test cases in that suite have failed
- Relation of end-to-end tests with functional and integration testing
Challenges faced in the end to end testing:
- Data and infrastructure dependencies – End-to-end tests may fail if the application is not available online or there are insufficient data sets available for scenarios being executed. To overcome this, testers will have to load the test environment with relevant data before executing tests.
- Non-user-based Test – End to End test may fail if the application is not available online or there are insufficient data sets available for scenarios being executed. To overcome this, testers will have to load the test environment with relevant data before executing tests.
- Reliance on non-automated infrastructure – Manual intervention and configuration is often needed during end to end testing due to the numerous tasks that testers must perform to prepare for end-to-end tests.
- Complexity – End to End test may fail if the data and application environment is not healthy or it is difficult to setup test environment, execute this kind of testing in parallel with regression testing sessions and analyze results at a later stage.
- Reproducibility – End to End test may fail if the application is not available online or there are insufficient data sets available for scenarios being executed.
Advantages of end to end testing:
There are many other advantages of end-to-end testing which are listed in the following bullets.
- It gives us the confidence that the application is working as expected and going to work when installed by a user or customer.
- End to end testing ensures that a new major release of the application will not break anything in older versions.
- It gives us confidence that an automated build is working as expected and producing good, clean code.
- It helps to discover many errors earlier in the development process or even before writing any code like design errors .
- To cover the complete functionality of the application and control the behavior from end to end.
- It gives us a good view of system performance with different types of transactions.
- It makes easier for us to find how well our application or components interact with other applications, systems, hardware and network elements in a test environment that mimics real world conditions.
- It helps to verify if the application can send and receive emails, encrypt/decrypt files or access different types of web services from external applications.
- Through end to end testing it is easy to find out minor/major changes made in requirements specification.
- We can also identify usability issues through this testing technique as we can explore the whole application from user’s perspective .
- It also helps to find out whether the changes made in requirements specification are applicable at all or not.
- This testing technique is used to verify that system requirements are being implemented correctly and match what was defined earlier during requirement analysis phase of project life cycle .
- It is used to validate that user transactions can be tracked correctly throughout the system, from beginning to end.
- End 2 end testing helps us to check whether all required data fields are present in the application and data entered by users is being stored in database.
- This testing technique also helps us to find out how many records/rows are being inserted, updated or deleted in database or application server.
- It is used to check that whether components such as operating system, middleware and third party libraries are working properly with our application.
- We can also ensure that any additional information collected by the system is stored in correct database columns .
- End 2 End testing helps software testers to find whether all the graphical user interfaces are showing correct information and working according to requirements .
- If we are using database for storing data, end 2 End technique can help us to check if data stored in it is correct or not.
- Through this technique we can ensure that our web application is accessible from different browsers.
- It helps to verify that our application is working properly in network environment and all other interfaces are also connected correctly or not.
- We can also check whether modules of the application are communicating with each other through APIs or not.
- End to end testing technique will make easier for us to find out how well our application or components interact with other applications, systems, hardware and network elements in a test environment that mimics real world conditions.
- It will also help us to check whether all the required data fields are present in the application and data entered by users is being stored in database.
- End 2 end testing helps software testers to find whether all the graphical user interfaces are showing correct information and working according to requirements .
end to end testing tool :
End to End Test Case Management tools supports executing all kinds of automated test cases, managing multiple stages, generating reports, and providing greater control over the tests by providing an overview of the testing. However, using these tools alone is not enough for end-to-end testing.
Therefore, End to End Test Case Management tools provides a better view of testing progress and status based on the automated test cases executed by testers, GUI push/pull events, and logging information from the application server that is crucial in determining whether or not tests have passed.
End to end testing tools are most commonly used by the following teams:
- Automation engineers, as it allows them to plan and manage test cases in an organized manner, ensure non-repudiation and meet compliance requirements.
- Project managers as it provides visibility into progress across multiple projects, gives details on code changes that impact testing and shows the test coverage for applications.
- Test analysts/planners who are responsible for creating and updating test cases, executing tests on a daily basis as well as monitoring overall project performance.
- QA architects who use end to end testing tools to visualize multiple stages of testing that they will perform in parallel. They also use the tool to track overall progress of testing, measure cycle time and identify bottlenecks.
- QA analysts & testers who engage in end-to-end testing activities throughout the project lifecycle – from design to implementation – depending on their role within the company or organization.
- Operations engineers as it provides them with an end-to-end view of the application, allowing them to identify any issues with infrastructure changes, support IT upon request and ensure high availability requirements are met.
- Business analysts as it allows them to validate any data prior to migration in order to measure quality during the build phase and troubleshoot bottlenecks early on in the project lifecycle.
End to End Test Case Management tools provides a better view of testing progress and status based on the automated test cases executed by testers, GUI push/pull events, and logging information from the application server that are crucial in determining whether or not tests have passed.
End-to-end testing plays an important role in agile projects by allowing testers to confirm that applications from multiple teams can function together and meet functional requirements. The planning process for end-to-end tests should be performed early in the project and steps to automate end-to-end test execution as much as possible.