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Integration Testing: Why Developers Heed Attention to It

Rohan Roy
Published: January 3, 2023

Testing is an extremely important part of any software development process. It is an umbrella term used to refer to various stages involved in ensuring that a product performs adequately. One such stage of testing is integration testing. I and T is a term often used by software developers. It is an abbreviated form of the term integration and testing, also sometimes simply called string testing, thread testing, or integration testing. Software is made up of various modules; in this process of testing, a developer combines all the various modules of software and then tests them together. It is a vital part of any software development process because it helps understand not only how the different modules of software interact with each other but how smoothly they are able to work as a singular unit.

What Is Integration Testing; Its Purpose and Its Objectives?

If we had to understand what integration testing is clearly, an example of a pen would be perfect. A pen comprises three parts; its cap, its body, and its ink. All these parts are produced and manufactured separately. The quality check is also done individually for each part. However, a pen is not launched until all the parts are put together and tested as a single unit. How well a pen writes depends on how it performs when all the parts are put together and then tested as a whole. This is the process of integration testing in a nutshell.

Process of Integration Testing

Integration testing is a little more complicated than simply putting together a pen and running it over the paper. In this process, a developer merges the various modules that comprise software together. In doing so, they make sure to keep the fundamental blueprint of the software in mind. The testing phase, which is the phase performed before integration testing, ensures that all the modules are merged correctly to deliver software that functions. A developer then connects with the client or the firm that the software is being sold to or developed for and then tries and understand their requirements, expectations, and what exact functions they need the software to perform. Keeping these expectations as parameters in mind, developers then run the software to ensure that its modules can interact with each other to perform specific functions.

Why Is Integration Testing Performed?

No part of a product is sent for assembly until it is fully functional. So, it is only natural to assume that if you put together a bunch of functional parts of a product, or in this case, a program, the result should also be a fully functional product. However, that is not the case. Many times, different modules of software work pristinely by themselves but have trouble interacting with other modules. It is also not uncommon for various modules to not be able to perform a specific function when combined. All these reasons make the process of integration testing an extremely important one for developers and software alike.

Objectives of Integration Testing

  • Bringing together different modules to create a fully functional application
  • Ensuring real-time application by incorporating the changing requirements of a client into the application itself.
  • Catching and resolving the errors that might have been missed during the unit testing stage.
  • Dealing with problems such as incorrect data formatting, API response generation, external hardware being erroneous, and third-party services presenting an incorrect or incomplete interface for the application.,
  • Ensuring that individually working components of a module work adequately when integrated.
  • Testing how the application or software developed performs the functions it is required to.

How Popular Is Integration Testing Among Developers?

As mentioned above, testing software or an application can get quite boring super quick; it is not challenging for a developer at all, does not require much creative liberty, and can definitely get extremely monotonous and time-consuming. However, it is still one of those phases that a developer cannot even fathom skimping out on. This is because testing ensures that any application developed by a software engineer is not only functional and satisfactory but that it provides exceptional results and meets the expectations of the developer who designed it and the client it was designed for. Other than this, any application that has undergone testing witnesses an increase in its value of up to five times its base value. This is because any product or application that has been tested multiple times has the confidence of its developers, and the clients are assured that it is bound to have minimal to no errors during its practical application

The trial-and-error method is one of the most popular methods that has been in existence since ancient times. While it is certainly time-consuming and tedious, people still do so because they know that testing out a new idea, procedure, or product would provide them with better, more sustainable results in the long run. Once the creators of a product, and in this case, developers of the software, have put their product through multiple stages of testing, they can catch and resolve the practical errors of their program. Being thorough with all stages of application testing, especially Integration testing, is any developer’s thumb rule, and correctly so.