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T31. Combinatorial Testing Explained

Peter Zimmerer, Siemens AG, CT SE 1

Peter Zimmerer is a Principal Engineer at Siemens AG, Corporate Technology, in Munich, Germany. For more than 17 years he has been working in the field of software testing and quality engineering. At Siemens he performs consulting and training on testing strategies, testing methods, testing processes, test automation, and testing tools in real-world projects and drives research and innovation in this area. He is an ISTQB(TM) Certified Tester Full Advanced Level and regular speaker at international testing conferences in Europe, Canada, and USA.

Designing test cases for one single input parameter is quite simple - but how do you design test cases for many different input parameters? This is really challenging and results in a combinatorial explosion of test cases. The classic question for effective testing is always, "Given limited time and resources, which of the combinations should be tested?"

This tutorial describes the underlying problems and challenges in test case design for combinatorial testing and discusses many different application scenarios. After explaining possible solutions using different testing techniques, an overview about supporting tools is given. Furthermore, successful experiences gained from real-world projects are presented which clearly show the necessity and benefits of this approach.

After this tutorial participants will not only understand that combinatorial testing occurs everywhere in a tester's (and developer's!) life, but they will especially have the necessary understanding to do effective and efficient test case design for combinatorial testing in their projects.

  • Increase your awareness and understand the challenges of combinatorial testing.
  • Get to know that testing combinations occurs very often in real life and that this results in a combinatorial explosion of test cases.
  • Become familiar with relevant testing techniques that are absolutely required for testing combinations effectively and efficiently.
  • Identify application scenarios for these testing techniques.
  • Get to know real-world examples to solve combinatorial testing problems.
  • Get an overview about tools that support combinatorial testing.
  • Learn about real-world project experiences.

The tutorial will be lecture based including interactive discussions in the group, reflections, exercises, and tool demos.

Audience: Researchers, Practitioners, Managers
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