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Software Testing | Reliability Testing

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  • Difficulty Level : Medium
  • Last Updated : 28 Jan, 2023
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Reliability Testing is a testing technique that relates to test the ability of a software to function and given environmental conditions that helps in uncovering issues in the software design and functionality. It is defined as a type of software testing that determines whether the software can perform a failure free operation for a specific period of time in a specific environment. It ensures that the product is fault free and is reliable for its intended purpose. 

Reliability testing is a type of software testing that evaluates the ability of a system to perform its intended function consistently and without failure over an extended period of time. The goal of reliability testing is to identify and address issues that can cause the system to fail or to become unavailable.

Reliability testing can be done in a variety of ways, including:

  1. Stress testing: subjecting the system to high levels of load or usage in order to identify performance bottlenecks or issues that can cause the system to fail
  2. Endurance testing: running the system continuously for an extended period of time in order to identify issues that may occur over time
    Recovery testing: testing the system’s ability to recover from failures or crashes.
  3. Reliability testing is an important aspect of software testing as it helps to ensure that the system will be able to meet the needs of its users over the long-term. It can also help to identify issues that may not be immediately apparent during functional testing, such as memory leaks or other performance issues.

It is important to note that reliability testing may require specialized tools and test environments, and that it’s often a costly and time-consuming process.

Objective of Reliability Testing: The objective of reliability testing is:

  • To find the perpetual structure of repeating failures.
  • To find the number of failures occurring is the specific period of time.
  • To discover the main cause of failure.
  • To conduct performance testing of various modules of software product after fixing defects.

Types of Reliability Testing: There are three types of reliability testing:-

  1. Feature Testing: Following three steps are involved in this testing:
    • Each function in the software should be executed at least once.
    • Interaction between two or more functions should be reduced.
    • Each function should be properly executed.
  2. Regression Testing: Regression testing is basically performed whenever any new functionality is added, old functionalities are removed or the bugs are fixed in an application to make sure with introduction of new functionality or with the fixing of previous bugs, no new bugs are introduced in the application.
  3. Load Testing: Load testing is carried out to determine whether the application is supporting the required load without getting breakdown. It is performed to check the performance of the software under maximum work load.
  4. There are several types of reliability testing that can be used to evaluate the performance and consistency of a system over time. Some common types of reliability testing include:
  5. Stress testing: This type of testing involves subjecting the system to high levels of usage or load in order to identify performance bottlenecks or issues that can cause the system to fail.
  6. Endurance testing: This type of testing involves running the system continuously for an extended period of time in order to identify issues that may occur over time, such as memory leaks or other performance issues.
    Recovery testing: This type of testing involves testing the system’s ability to recover from failures or crashes, and to return to normal operation.
  7. Load testing: This type of testing involves testing the system’s ability to handle a high number of simultaneous users or transactions.
    Volume testing: This type of testing involves testing the system’s ability to handle large amounts of data.
    Soak testing: This type of testing is similar to endurance testing, but it focus on the stability of the system under a normal, expected load over a long period of time.
  8. Spike testing: This type of testing involves subjecting the system to sudden, unexpected increases in load or usage in order to identify performance bottlenecks or issues that can cause the system to fail.

The study of reliability testing can be divided into three categories:-

  1. Modelling
  2. Measurement
  3. Improvement

Measurement of Reliability Testing:

  • Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF): Measurement of reliability testing is done in terms of mean time between failures (MTBF).
  • Mean Time To Failure (MTTF): The time between two consecutive failures is called as mean time to failure (MTTF).
  • Mean Time To Repair (MTTR): The time taken to fix the failures is known as mean time to repair (MTTR).
MTBF = MTTF + MTTR 
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