The Web Testing Companion: The Insider's Guide to Efficient and Effective Tests

The Web Testing Companion: The Insider's Guide to Efficient and Effective Tests
By Lydia Ash, Lydia Ash

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Average customer review:
(7 customer reviews)

Product Description

  • Written by one of Microsoft's key testing trainers, this hands-on tutorial and reference explains why, when, what, and how to test
  • Teaches new and experienced testers how to analyze and properly test Web applications
  • Filled with practical advice that can be immediately applied to any Web-testing task, on any browser running on any platform
  • Concentrates on proven solutions and presents the material in a way that will help develop a professional skill set in novice testers and will improve the productivity of all testers
  • Companion Web site includes dozens of valuable templates and test patterns that will allow readers to rapidly conduct tests in multiple languages against all browser and operating-system combinations


Product Details

  • Amazon Sales Rank: #2585740 in Books
  • Published on: 2003-05-02
  • Original language: English
  • Number of items: 1
  • Dimensions: 9.25" h x 1.16" w x 7.37" l, 1.87 pounds
  • Binding: Paperback
  • 600 pages

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover
Practical, hands-on techniques for testing the design, globalization, performance, and security of Web applications

Whether you're a novice or experienced Web tester, this hands-on guide provides you with the practical steps you’ll need to follow to rigorously test across multiple platforms and browsers. Written by one of Microsoft's leading software testers, The Web Testing Companion offers a collection of testing techniques, experiences, anecdotes, and information that can be immediately applied to any Web-testing effort.

Lydia Ash starts at the ground level, helping you to become an effective tester. She then clearly shows you how to analyze different scenarios and determine which testing techniques you should use. These techniques will help identify crucial program bugs that lower the quality of a Web application so that you can realize its full potential.

The Web Testing Companion concentrates on proven solutions and helps you understand why, when, and how to perform Web testing. You'll learn how to:

  • Analyze and properly test Web applications
  • Perform tests from the perspective of the client accessing the Web application
  • Plan and automate testing efforts effectively
  • Check for HTML errors, determine overall accessibility, and critique the design
  • Develop a professional skill set and improve your productivity
  • Optimize an application in order to improve overall performance
  • Test for security problems or privacy issues

The companion Web site contains dozens of templates and test patterns that you can use to conduct tests in multiple languages and against various browser and operating system combinations.

About the Author
LYDIA ASH is currently a test lead on the testing effort for Microsoft Corporation's Outlook Web Access team with a particular focus on performance and security. She has successfully directed test efforts at Microsoft for several years and worked with many teams and individuals to pass on the critical knowledge of Web testing. Ash has previously worked as a QA Engineer and in project management.


Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
5Straightforward, practical approach to web testing.
By GM
Lydia's book is probably the best written web testing book in the market. The prose is easy to follow, progressive, non-verbose, and sometimes even inspiring. She painfully explicates various testing principles with exacting examples. Published in 2003, some of the examples already show their age but the testing principles and problems are still current. Web technologies have evolved immensely in the last three years and this book would benefit from such updates in a second edition.

9 of 12 people found the following review helpful.
5Take the title literally
By Mike Tarrani
This book is overshadowed by "Testing Applications on the Web: Test Planning for Mobile and Internet-Based Systems" ISBN 0471201006, which is one of the most highly regarded in the testing community. However, that does not mean this book is without merit. On the contrary, the rich content of the appendices, which comprise a significant portion of this work, make it an ideal companion to the aforementioned book.
Another point in this book's favor is that it is basic enough and structured to make it an ideal text for a course on web testing. The author did an excellent job of describing good practices in web testing and covering the basics. She also provides a good deal of sage advice on careen matters, which a more technical book will overlook.
I found the chapters on server-side testing accurate and clear enough for new test professionals to completely follow. The chapters on performance and security testing were reasonably complete, and the chapters on client side were as well and clearly written. I also like the author's objectivity - she works for Microsoft, but did not emphasize that company's technologies or processes over standard industry practices.
As a supplement to a more technical book, such as the one I cited above, or as a text in a basic web testing course this book shines. It is not the definitive reference, but is worth reading if for no other reason than to have the appendices nearby as a ready reference during test cycles.

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful.
4Excellent intro and reference to beginner/imtermediate QA.
By Stephen E. Donner
As a Software QA Engineer with only 2 years experience (who's just recently been transitioned into web-based application testing from a web-client background) and, might I add, an employee of the largest competitor to Lydia's parent company, I was pleasantly surprised that she was non-biased and thorough in her comparison of different browsers (though a tad brief in other areas).

Okay, enough with the background. Things this book does effectively; begins to get you thinking about security testcases (via malformed CGI/http requests, extended-char inputs, etc), but also covers a great deal broadly on automation, performance, static/dynamic HTML, and a few scattered topics such as form controls. She does seem to go overboard on character sets (both in security sections and in testing sections), though perhaps my experience in the 'real-world' at my company hasn't touched on this enough, I don't know. She does great on helping you formulate the browser matrixes, with all their resolution types, and she even differentiates between screen resolution and what she calls 'canvas size' (I refer to this as the viewport, but they're identical). This book is a fabulous introduction to the metholodies, and what a beginner or intermediate tester would expect to find in the real world. Bug cycles, templates, project cycles, roles, best practices, scheduling, bug severities and the like are all described in sufficient detail.

Now for the single disappointment: her Test Planning and Design chapter is shy of 20 pages. This may or may not sound comprehensive enough, but to me it was terribly under-developed. She does break this chapter down and describe the different kinds of testcases/plans, but doesn't really show any templates, which I was expecting. To be fair, this is probably the hardest to encapsulate in a book, as each company (sometimes even each team) formats their test documentation differently (some to ISO standards, some in Word format, some in HTML, some in Excel spreadsheets, even).

Buy it for an excellent introduction to the subject, a good reference for HTTP error codes, characters sets, best practices, but for advanced security/performance/automation, I'd probably buy a book that specifices in those topics.

See all 7 customer reviews...

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