Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Effective methods of writing Defect description

Effective methods of writing Defect description
shared by Latharajesh Rajesh

Testing is commonly used to execute software and finding defects. A Defect which describes of any variance or any discrepancies between actual and expected results in application software. Defects should be documented in such a way that any developer should understand the defect description and he/she can reproduce in their respective environment.

Defects can be logged by using Tools like Eg Siebel, Track, PVCS etc….and it can also be logged by documenting the defects and maintaining the document in repository. Testers should write the defect description efficiently which will be useful for others within a project. And the documentation should be transparent.

Best Practices of writing defects descriptions.
· Pre-Requisite of a Defect Document.
· An Abstract of a defect
· Description and Observation of a defect
· Screen shot of a Defect.

Pre-Requisite of a Defect Document
Document should contain few standard details:

- Author Name or Submitter Name
- Type of Defect (Eg: Enhancement, Issue or Defect)
- Submitted Date
- Fixed Date
- Status of the defect
- Project Phase (Eg: version 1.1, 2.0 etc…)
- Version Found (Daily builds)
- Severity (Eg, Critical, major, Minor, Cosmetic)

Abstract of a Defect
Testers should only specify a brief description of a defect

Eg: Unable to update a record

Description and Observation of Defect
In Description column the first few lines should specify an exact problem in the application. And in the following paragraph mention in detail like steps to reproduce (Eg , Start from the application Logon till the defect was found in the application).

Following with an Observation like (Eg, System displays an error message Eg: “Unable to update the record “. But according to functionality system should update the updated record). And it will be great if a tester specifies few more observation points like:
- This particular defect occurs in a Particular version (Eg Adobe versions for a Report.)
- This particular defect also found in other modules
- Inconsistency of application while reproducing the defect (Eg, some times able to reproduce and sometimes not)

Screen Shot of a defect
By providing a screen shot along with the defect document it will be very much useful for the developers to exactly identify the defect and the cause. And will be useful for the testers to verify in future of that particular defect.

Tips for Screen shot:
- Screen shot should be self explanatory
- A Figure like arrow , box or circle can be highlighted (were exactly the problem accrued this type highlighting will be helpful for GUI / Cosmetic related defects)
- Use different colors for specific descriptions

By giving the brief description of defect the
· Easy to analyze and cause of defect.
· Easy to fix the defect
· Avoid re-work
· Testers can save time
· Defect duplication can be avoided.
· Keeping track for defects

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