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Managing the Testing Process: Practical Tools and Techniques for Managing Hardware and Software Testing 3rd Edition

3.9 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0470404157
ISBN-10: 0470404159
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

For a practical guide to software testing, readers can look to Rex Black's Managing the Testing Process, a compendium of real-world advice on managing software testing successfully. It is a veritable hodge-podge of sample test documents and is filled with recommendations from an old hand at test management.

Early sections examine the design of test plans, along with strategies for assessing and prioritizing risk as well as catching bugs through effective testing. Sample case studies include a network hardware device and a Java word processor.

Throughout this book, a variety of documents (including Excel spreadsheets and Access databases) are presented to get you started on your own testing projects. (Though reproduced here in truly microscopic print, all sample documents are included on the accompanying CD-ROM.) The book also looks at metrics for measuring the performance of your testing operation.

Managing the Testing Process shows how a bug-tracking database is the most effective model for managing the testing cycle. This book is chock-full of advice on testing management. The author also presents dozens of tips for succeeding in the software Q/A job market.

Sections on designing a lab and staffing it, including a valuable discussion on when to use consultants and when to outsource testing, provide a practical guide to today's testing management. After an introduction to working with other players in today's software organizations, a final chapter looks at managing testing across different locations.

Many developers spend time in Q/A as a stepping stone to careers in software design. And as the author points out, the job of test engineer is growing in popularity. Read this book to find out the often harsh realities of software testing along with strategies for improving the effectiveness of your software testing team. --Richard Dragan --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

Proven tips and tools for building and executing an effective test project

Earlier editions of this book have helped test managers around the world to develop essential tools and apply them to successful test project management. In this third edition of his bestseller, Rex Black shares lessons he has learned in the decade since the first edition came out and provides a thorough review of the latest tools and resources, making this book even more valuable.

A structured test operation is planned, repeatable, and documented, but preserves creativity and flexibility in all the right places. Rex Black teaches you to develop models for understanding the meaning of the myriad data points generated by testing. Then you can effectively manage what is often a confusing, chaotic, and change-ridden area of the project, building an effective and efficient test organization. You will learn about:

  • Building a business case for solid testing
  • Mastering Agile testing challenges, applying risk-based testing, and managing distributed and outsourced testing

  • Understanding and adapting the new IEEE 829 standard

  • Building a high-performance test team using skills management, training, and certification

  • Building and managing an effective test organization, explained with plenty of real-world examples, exercises, and solutions

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 676 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 3 edition (August 11, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470404159
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470404157
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.4 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #409,023 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I very much liked the book. Rex Black has written about the process and management side of testing. This makes it an ideal complement to Cem Kaner's "Testing Computer Software" (which deals with testing technique) and Boris Beizer's "Software Testing Techniques" (which deals with the fundamentals).
I found the templates useful, mostly because I never worked my way around Excel to get those metrics in an automated manner. But don't expect them to be replacement for commercial test management tools.
This should be a required reading for anyone who plans or manages testing.
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Format: Paperback
The approach and techniques given in this book will get the new test manager and his or her team quickly started with basic techniques for managing testing. The key strengths of this book include:
(1) Instructions for developing test plans, and associated test cases and reports - the material is fairly basic, but complete and consistent with good practices.
(2) An excellent discussion of, and advice for, effective management of a test team, setting priorities and managing budgets.
(3) Practical advice for setting objectives and scope within the testing process.
While this book will give the in-the-trenches test professionals a view of the 'big picture', it's more suited to managers and QA leads who are seeking guidelines for establishing the foundation of a test process, and who want to quickly implement standards for test documentation and a workflow. The book's accompanying web page provides over 50 templates, case studies and tools that can be downloaded and immediately used within your organization. In addition, the website contains a small (but growing) collection of articles, presentations and links that augment the material in this book.
Although there are a handful of other books on test management that are equal to this one, each has strengths and weaknesses - but all provide sound advice and a structured approach to managing the test process. This particular book's strengths include the downloadable documents that will save much time and effort, and the straightforward approach to basic test management. If you are trying to get a basic test process in place you won't go wrong if you select this book.
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Format: Paperback
This is one of my favorite software testing books. It has an especially good chapter on metrics for evaluating the progress of your testing effort--the metrics are easy to calculate, and VERY importantly, easy to understand by--and convincing to, in my experience--the people you'll be reporting your progress to. There's also a good chapter on bug-tracking, and some discussion of how to write bug reports that I've found very useful for training new testers. Plus, there's lots of useful perspective on general management issues--hiring; the interdepartmental issues that (as far as I know) are unique to testing; etc.
I wrote this review based on the first edition--a second edition has since come out.
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Format: Paperback
I found this book well written, with an engaging style for what can be a very dull subject. Not exactly what I was looking for, but I was able to glean enough nuggets to gain some benefit.
Very disappointed in the accompanying CD. Ad hoc samples appear to have been thrown together at the last minute. Simple things like a lack of data (1 record per sample database), poor data models, incorrectly documented comments and a lousy UI. Individual samples existed in a vacuum and did not tie together into a coherent whole. I would have held this book in higher regard if no CD had been included.
It would appear that Rex Black did not practise what he preaches in this case - not a good look for a testing / QA publication.
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Format: Paperback
You can figure all this stuff out for yourself over five or six years, as I did, or you could read this book to get quickly up to speed. This is not a "how to test" book. This is a "how to get the test process running smoothly" book. Take it from somebody who's been testing since 1988: this is useful.
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By A Customer on September 10, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is the only book on testing that I have found that concentrates on the management tasks associated with the testing process. Rather than just the mechanics of testing, the book covers everything from establishing and funding test teams to coordinating corporate responses, from developing plans to assuring that they succeed. Just the guide that IT managers need.
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By A Customer on July 20, 1999
Format: Paperback
As an aspiring tester, I can say that this book is not quite what I was looking for. It didn't give me a big picture of the testing process, nor did it give me any insight into how to use effective methods. On the whole, the better book for your money is "Testing Computer Software" by Kaner, et al. Now that one is a winner. This, just so so.
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Format: Paperback
I am a final year graduate student and I started reading this book as a part of the reading assignment for the course "Systems Testing and Verification". I found this book very valuable for the internship I am doing as a product test engineer. The book is indispesible guide for the beginner and good reference for the professionals. The real world experience of the author makes this book an appropriate guide line for all those who wants to deal with testing process. I have applied some key concepts from the book for the test cases I designed and the result was quite satisfying. I would not have come up with such a good test cases on my own without refering to this book. Its worth keeping this book as a future reference.
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