May 25, 2010

Implementing a Test Sequence with TestTrack TCM

Helix ALM
Test Management
One question I get every now and then is how to implement a test sequence in TestTrack TCM.  The concept of "before you test Y, you must test X first". There isn't a specific feature in TestTrack to address this but there are actually several ways to implement test sequences. Following is one way. In this example, I am using two custom fields. One is called "Test Module" and the other one is called "Test Module Sequence". The first one, which I created as a text field, allows me to group all test cases (and test runs) that have to be performed in a sequence. The second field, which I created as an integer field, indicates the order of the sequence. You could do this with a single custom field, but two custom fields provide more filtering and sorting options. Also, the first custom field does not have to be a text field. You might already have another custom field that allows you to group all test cases that have to be performed together in a sequence. The same custom fields should be created for test runs. Then, as illustrated in this post, configure the Item Mapping Rules to ensure these values will be "pushed" to the test runs when they are generated. Since my test cases were already created, I used the Bulk Test Case Changes... to set the Test Module field to the same value. I then set the Test Module Sequence for each test case. Below is the test case list window showing the end result:

Now you are all set! When test runs are generated, the Test Module and Test Module Sequence will come over. From there, you need to use filters to get the proper list of test runs. First, use a filter like the one I posted here, so you only get the test runs for a specific combination of test variants. Next, use column filtering so you only see test runs for a given module and a given Test Run Set. Finally, sort by the Test Module Sequence. Following is a screenshot of the filtered Test Run list window:

You may be wondering why you need to filter out all test runs that are not part of this specific sequence and also need to sort in ascending order. This is because, when you start with the first test run, you will be able to use the navigation buttons at the bottom of the test run to take you to the next test run in the filtered (and sorted) list.

When you use the navigation buttons within the Test Runs window, you won't have to go back to the list to figure out the order. The navigation buttons will take you to the next test run based on the sort order in the list window. You will also only be able to navigate through the test runs displayed in the list window. Optionally, you can also hide the Overview tab for test runs so each run will start at the Steps tab. So with a little creativity, you can use TestTrack's flexibility and configurability to accomplish what you need.