Written By :Appsierra

Thu May 09 2024

5 min read

Code Coverage vs. Test Coverage: What's the Difference?

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Code Coverage Testing vs Test Coverage

The most popular techniques for calculating the performance of the code are test coverage and code coverage testing. But, as you might imagine, they’re not as close. I’ve found many times that the research staff and production team are uncertain about the usage of these two terminologies.

Difference between Code Coverage and Test Coverage

Below are the main differences between code coverage and test coverage:

Code coverage: This shows the percentage of data covered by software quality engineering solutions such as Selenium test cases or some other software engineering method by both manual monitoring and automatic testing. 

For instance, if the source code has a basic if … else loop, the code coverage implementation will be 100% of all possibilities that were protected by the test code, i.e. if & else.

Test coverage: This includes testing the features and the test coverage techniques implemented as part of the technical standards description, the program requirements definition, and other necessary documents. 

Code Coverage and Test Coverage

For example, whether your web application needs to be cross-browser reviewed to ensure that your application renders well from multiple browsers or not? A web application testing service can help you determine this. 

The number of browsers + OS combinations across which you have checked your web application’s browser compatibility may be around your test scope. Let’s proceed into more details about code coverage & test coverage.

Understanding Code Coverage in detail

Code coverage is carried out during unit checking by engineers to validate the execution of the code in such a way that almost all code statements are implemented. Most of the code coverage approaches use static code coverage instrumentation, where statements that control execution are placed at the required locations in the code. 

Although the incorporation of code coverage instrumentation leads to an increase in the overall program size and execution time, the overhead is marginal compared to the information provided from the execution of the instrumented method. The output consists of a report that reports the test coverage of the test suite.

Why should Code Coverage Testing be Performed? 

Unit checks are usually used at an independent unit level to validate the code. Since unit tests were written by the creator, the tests that can be used as part of unit testing are more noticeable to the creator. Unit testing aims to increase the software's efficiency, but the number of measures that constitute unit testing will still be a concern. 

As software development advances, new functionality and improvements (to defects discovered during code coverage testing) are added to the release schedule. This implies that the test code will need to be changed in order to keep up with the programme advancements made throughout development. 

It is vital that the testing requirements established at the project's inception are maintained throughout successive release cycles. Best practices for code coverage will be utilized to ensure that the checks meet specific standards and that the best-performing code reaches the development process

In certain organizations, the programming committee determines the minimum level of code coverage required before the software enters the code coverage implementation phase. The primary explanation for this is to decrease the risk of identifying vulnerabilities at a later point of product growth.

How Code Coverage Testing is Performed?

There are various degrees at which code coverage testing is possible. Some of the typical subgroups of code coverage are:

Branch coverage

Branch coverage is often referred to as decision coverage to ensure the implementation of a potential division included in a decision-making process. 

E.g., whether you include an If… A conditional statement or a Do … While statement in the code, as part of the coverage, if you are adding a fall back for cross-browser compatibility, you must ensure that all branches, i.e. If, Otherwise, Do, and While are checked to create a cross-platform friendly website by supplying sufficient inputs.

Function coverage

Function coverage ensures the checking of required functions (particularly exported functions / APIs). Because the logic used in the functions will then be checked, it may also require checking the functions for different kinds of input parameters. Method coverage will be 100 percent of all the functions in the code that are checked.

Loop Coverage

This strategy is to guarantee that at least once any loop in the source is executed. There may be several loops that can be executed based on outcomes you obtained at runtime, it is appropriate to validate those loops to make the code foolproof.

Understanding Test Coverage in Detail 

Test analysis is a black-box testing methodology, unlike code inspection, which is a white-box testing methodology. Test cases are written in such a manner as to provide full security for the specifications defined in FRS (Functional Requirements Specification), SRS (Software Requirements Specification), URS (User Requirement Specification), etc. As the experiments are extracted from these texts, there are minimal / no automation possibilities.

How to Test Coverage is Performed?

Test coverage may also be checked by multiple forms of testing, including interface coverage. For eg, there might be a case in user-centered web apps where the UI / UX tests are of greater value to functional testing, whilst in other types of apps (e.g. banking, finance); accessibility tests, security tests, etc. may be more relevant. 

However, which method of testing do you pursue, depends entirely on the market proposal.

Listed below are some test coverage mechanisms:

  1. Unit Testing– A unit level/module level conducts this method of testing. Bugs found at the level of a network will vary from the problems experienced at the stage of integration.
  2. Functional Testing- The functions/features are evaluated against the specifications specified in the Functional Design Specification (FRS) in functional testing.
  3. Integration testing- Since the program is evaluated at a device stage, it is often referred to as system testing. After all the necessary components are implemented, this method of testing is done.
  4. Acceptance Testing– All this depends on when the product can be published to the final consumer/customer as a result of acceptance testing. This is where the developers get a sign-off from the web application’s reviewers and SMEs as a green pass, just before moving the code improvements from the staging phase to development.

Conclusion

Code coverage testing is a white-box technique, while test coverage is a black-box research approach. You can choose test coverage, code coverage, & feature coverage, based on the project’s specifications and scope. For each operation, you can prioritize the test tasks and give a preliminary deadline.

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