What Is Pairwise Testing And How To Use It For Cost-Effective QA by Yana Badzhieva Yellow Universe

Numerous open source and free tools exist to generate pairwise value sets. The tester must inform the tool about how the application functions for these value sets to be effective. Pairwise does require some up-front investment in preparing the data, constraints and requirements, as well as understanding the business processes. https://www.globalcloudteam.com/ Once you have created your initial set, you can easily update as changes or new releases occur. In a best-case scenario, you know what parameters are impacted by rules or lines of code being applied. Without certain tools, it can be extremely challenging for testers and managers to determine how much testing is enough.

pairwise testing

Repeat the same process for the 3rd column, enter the values of the order category. Book Category has 2 values, that’s how many times we have to insert the values. You can see how this X, L, 5 is getting repeated, so we are eliminating these Test Cases to bring in unique combinations.

Coding & Development

Pairwise testing is a test design technique that reduces the number of test cases by selecting only the most relevant combinations of input parameters. It is based on the assumption that most software defects are caused by interactions between two factors, rather than more complex scenarios. Pairwise testing can help you save time and resources, while still achieving high coverage and quality. In this article, you will learn how to apply pairwise testing to different types of software testing, such as functional, performance, security, and usability testing.

  • In studies (referenced below), it was studied how bugs — discovered by other means than pairwise testing — could have been found by pairwise testing.
  • Pairwise tests acts in a similar way, it explores the different paths of interaction.
  • The pairwise test cases, generated by Microsoft’s “pict” tool, are shown below.
  • Once the pilot team completes its all-pairs testing project, introduce the technique to other QA teams.

Software must typically coexist and interact with many other software systems. To add to this complexity, software is usually evolving with new versions being delivered regularly. Some software systems might even run in as many different kinds of environments as there are customers. Some of the browsers might be configured with 200 different settings such as security and privacy settings, window sizes and color configurations. Pairwise testing is well-suited for testing that different combinations of customization will work. These nine test cases cover all the nine pairs of input values, while reducing the number of test cases from 27 (if you test all the combinations) to nine.

N-wise testing

This will decrease the number of tests without causing it to detect less bugs. From a user’s point of view, pairwise testing is light-weight and simple to apply to even the larger cases. The word pairwise (i.e. pair-wise) is really “2-wise” where the number 2 has been replaced with the word “pair” (for reasons that will also be covered later!).

pairwise testing

Pairwise testing is not a replacement for this kind of testing but complementary to it. Pairwise testing will put the software or hardware system into varied situations and is sure to explore other paths than those most familiar to a domain expert. Pairwise testing fits nicely into the testing phase of software or hardware development. Pairwise testing is usually used as a synonym for t-wise testing, even though t-wise testing is a better term as it clearly refers to any thoroughness. This article follows the custom of using the term pairwise testing to mean any thoroughness. There are many TOOLS that adopted and integrated pairwise testing as one of the test generation methods.


A pairwise test tool helps derive an optimal mix of scenarios without negatively impacting the cost. At the same time, it offers adequate control to the teams to perform risk-based testing. Pairwise tools provide modeling capabilities that are easily understood and easy to use. Furthermore, it is easy to maintain test cases by adding new features or eliminating those not needed. Pairwise is an industry technique that has been around for more than a decade.

As the thoroughness of pairwise testing increases, it has been found that increasing amounts of bugs can be found. I one large study, it was found that for a thoroughness of 1, 2 and 3, the percentage of bugs that might be found was 50, 75 and 90%, respectively. This study found no bugs that required more than a thoroughness of 6, a result that has stood the test of time.

Waterfall Model in Software Development Life Cycle

Pairwise testing is a technique where you test all possible combinations of input parameters in pairs to find defects that might not appear in normal testing. It’s a great way to save time and increase test coverage, but it can be tedious and time-consuming if done manually. By automating pairwise testing, you can save time and effort while ensuring thorough coverage. For example, you’re testing a web application with multiple input fields like name, email, phone number, etc.. You can quickly generate test cases that cover all possible combinations of these inputs without manually creating each one.

This puts more pressure on testing to be able to handle changes and new requirements faster. With crunched timelines, the ability to test everything in a shorter amount of time becomes an issue. For each added degree of thoroughness, the number of tests is roughly multiplied by some factor.

Books – Data Science

The same issue will happen when the combination creates repetitive sets. Here it is Fiction- Online and Nonfiction- Instore, we can switch the last rows. Our mission is to provide a free, world-class education to anyone, anywhere.

pairwise testing

Evaluate if pairwise testing should occur during functional testing or regression testing. If it’s not possible to execute pairwise testing in both, focus on regression testing, at which point the application functionality should be stable. We can significantly reduce the number of checks using pairwise testing method.

What Is Pairwise Testing And How To Use It For Cost-Effective QA

Pairwise testing, also, will not be useful if the values of inputs are inappropriate. Pairwise can begin with a model-based testing concept that records requirements and then aids in designing test scenarios and test cases. One starts with process models, while the other starts with parameters and values. The one that starts with process models has an add-on that allows you to record out-of-the-box scripts with Selenium and then import them to generate initial process models. What this means is that the tool you use may be determined based on where in the software development life cycle you are applying pairwise testing. The idea behind pairwise testing is to test every possible pair of inputs.

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *