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Improving software testing productivity using record-playback

Test pro describes the benefits and shortcomings of record-playback software testing tools, and offers recommendations in this podcast.

Software test pro Matt Heusser examines the benefits and pitfalls of record-playback for testing. He describes senarios it will work well in, and those situations where it is not appropriate in this SearchSoftwareQuality podcast. He also discusses the pros and cons of so called "good-enough software", software which is not thoroughly tested for various reasons, but released to the public just the same. Other topics covered include:

  • What is record-playback?
  • How can it be used for testing?
  • What are the strengths of record-playback?
  • Manual testing versus automated testing
  • Test tool recommendations
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About the author: Matt Heusser is a technical staff member of SocialText, which he joined in 2008 after 11 years of developing, testing and/or managing software projects. He teaches informaton systems courses at Calvin College and is the original lead organizer of the Great Lakes Software Excellence Conference, now in it's fourth year. He writes about the dynamics of testing and development on his blog,Creative Chaos.

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I've used record-playback test tools to perform some kind of tedious task that I needed to repeat over and over again. We have never added these kinds of tests to our test suites however, since they tend to be fragile and difficult to maintain.