A Pair of Stories about All-Pairs Testing

Jon Bach, Quardev, Inc.

What do you do when you're faced with testing a million or more possible combinations, all manually? Easy-just declare the problem so big and the time so short that testing is impossible. But what if there were an analytic method that could drastically reduce the number of combinations to test while reducing risks at the same time? All-pairs testing, the pairing up of testable elements, is one way to create a reasonable number of test cases while reducing the risk of missing important defects. Unfortunately, as Jonathan Bach demonstrates, this technique can also be used incorrectly, thus creating more risk, not less. Jonathan shares his experiences on two projects-one success and one failure-that employed all-pairs analysis and describes the reasons behind the results. Start down the path to all-pairs success for your next big testing project.

  • Learn the rationale behind pairwise data analysis
  • Use two free tools that create the pairings
  • Understand the risks and rewards of all-pairs testing

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