What Is Unit Testing in Software Engineering?

Nov 19, 2023 | Best Practices, Test Automation Insights

Unit Testing

As one of the earliest phases of testing during software development, unit testing is critical to saving your team time and money by catching bugs earlier and fixing them faster. We’ll walk you through the pros and cons of unit testing in software engineering and discuss the best ways to create tests for your code.

The Purpose of Unit Testing in Software Engineering

Unit testing seeks to isolate different parts of your code in order to simplify the testing process. By breaking your code into individual units, it becomes much easier to spot each problem and its solution than it would be later in development when the units are combined into something more complex.

Your QA testing team should perform unit testing early and often. Ideally, it should be done each time the code is updated in order to make sure the changes haven’t introduced new issues into the software. By automating unit testing, your testers can save a significant amount of time while maintaining optimal test coverage.

Types of unit testing include:

  • Statement coverage testing
  • Branch coverage testing 
  • Decision coverage testing
  • Control flow testing 
  • Data flow testing

Benefits of Unit Testing

Identifies Problems Earlier

The further you get in the development of your software, the more complex your code will become and the harder it will be to spot issues and fix them. While it is inevitable that some issues will arise or fail to be spotted until later in development, unit testing allows you to cast a net much earlier and catch as many issues as you can early on.

Unit tests can also be integrated into the Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) pipeline 

Drawbacks of Unit Testing

Unit testing can have its set of challenges, particularly if your team doesn’t have a lot of software testing experience. Creating your first unit tests can be time-consuming, and it can feel like it is delaying progress on the software’s development. If you’re testing manually, regular unit tests after new updates can introduce a lot of overhead into your project, and achieving 100% test coverage can also be challenging. You may be left with some gaps in test coverage that you will need to make up through different testing processes.

It’s also important that testers don’t fall into the trap of believing that since their code passed unit testing it doesn’t need to go through a rigorous testing process further in the development cycle. Testing the units in isolation cannot tell you what happens when you put the units together, and those issues may require higher-level testing to discover.

Automated Unit Testing with Ranorex

Ranorex Studio is a powerful tool for automated UI testing. It streamlines the test data handling process and reduces the time and effort required for data setup and maintenance. Ranorex also helps save costs by optimizing test case execution and minimizing test data-related errors.

With Ranorex, testers have the flexibility to work with various data sources, enabling them to use real-world data for testing scenarios. The ability to handle different data formats empowers testers to adapt their data sources to match specific testing requirements. Once their tests are ready to execute, they can run tests in parallel on different browsers, real-world devices, and emulators.

Ranorex offers an intuitive and user-friendly interface, making it easy for testers and QA teams to manage and manipulate test data efficiently. Even users with limited technical expertise can quickly navigate through the tools and effectively handle test data.

Why Choose Ranorex?

Ranorex is trusted by more than 4,000 companies around the world due to our commitment to comprehensive testing tools, security, and user-friendly design. According to the G2 Grid for Test Automation software, Ranorex is a market leader in its adoption rate and customer satisfaction. The rating is based on the feedback of verified users who also noted Ranorex’s return on investment and ease of implementation.

In addition to Ranorex’s comprehensive suite of testing tools, we also offer a range of support and educational resources. Plus, when you purchase a Ranorex license, you’ll receive a year of renewable customer support. 

Streamline Your Software Unit Testing Process

Looking to save time and money by automating unit testing? Start a free trial of Ranorex today and start executing tests.

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