What Is Smoke Testing in Software QA Testing?

Smoke testing is a type of QA testing used to verify if the build is ready for actual testing. Software QA testing is a time-consuming and expensive task, so one has to be sure that it won’t turn into a waste of money if initiated too early. Smoke testing can help with that, as well as identify some nasty issues that must be fixed post haste. However, there are also times when this type of testing can be skipped altogether.

Keep reading to find out all you need to know about smoke testing from Devtorium’s experienced software QA consulting professionals. 

Software QA Testing Types: What Is Smoke Testing?

Smoke QA testing is used to determine whether a system or application is functioning correctly. It is typically the first step in a more comprehensive QA process and is used to quickly identify any major issues with the system before further testing can be conducted. Smoke testing can be beneficial for organizations in several ways.

It’s best to perform this type of software QA testing every time when adding a new feature or updating the app’s functionality. Simply put, whenever the existing build undergoes a change, smoke testing helps ensure that it goes smoothly. It focuses on evaluating the performance of critical functionalities. The next stage after this build assessment is functional QA testing.

Smoke testing in the process of software QA testing

Benefits of Performing Smoke Testing

  • Smoke testing can help save time and money by quickly identifying any major issues with the system. Therefore, it enables software owners to avoid spending resources on more comprehensive QA processes that may not be necessary.
  • This type of software QA testing allows for identifying problems at early stages. In addition, it’s easier and cheaper to fix them this way.
  • Smoke testing takes little time but can be crucial in detecting critical errors. Therefore, it’s a valuable tool for reducing business risks.
  • Adding another software QA testing stage will improve the overall system quality and minimize the risks of new integrations.

Smoke Software QA Testing Process Explained

The process of smoke testing goes like this. First, the development team uploads the new build to the QA environment. Then, the QA team starts their work. Usually, smoke testing is performed manually. However, there are some tools that can automate these processes. The team focuses on testing critical paths to ensure that nothing hampers the overall work of the app. When successful, the team moves on to functional testing.

See the smoke testing cycle in the picture below. Note that if experts detect any issues at this software A testing stage, the process stops until the build is fixed.

Smoke testing cycle.

When, Why, and Who Needs to Conduct Smoke Testing

Due to its numerous advantages and ease of execution, this type of software QA testing can benefit everyone. Smoke testing is cheap and can be performed by developers as well as QAs. Therefore, when applied wisely, it can help software owners save a lot of money.

It’s imperative to understand that this type of assessment is very basic. As it only investigates crucial functionalities, it won’t help you catch minor bugs. Therefore, it can’t replace more advanced software QA testing stages.

However, there is also no need to hire a software QA consulting service to perform smoke testing specifically. When outsourcing your QA, you should invest in services that allow you to get the highest quality of the final product. So, such a basic step as smoke testing should be carried out in-house.

Meanwhile, smoke testing is extensive enough to give you an idea of whether the build is usable overall. Therefore, performing it every time when making any change is imperative. Such an approach will also make it easier for you to monitor the build’s evolution and facilitate corrections.

Due to the simplicity of this step, some businesses and development teams choose to skip it, hoping that all issues are fixed at later software QA testing stages. At Devtorium, we reject this approach because it wastes resources for both the client and the QA team. Instead, we believe that thorough and structured quality assurance testing is vital, so we take the time to ensure the product’s functionality at every step.

How software QA testing is done with smoke testing.

Best Books for Programmers and Other IT Pros by Andrii Bohatyr

Today we are sharing insights and recommendations for IT pros from our current Head of Development Andrii Bohatyr, who introduces his personal list of the best books for programmers and other IT pros.

Andrii has been working in development for over a decade. During this time he received multiple certifications, including AWS Certified Solutions Architect and SAFe. Although, when asked, he calls himself a ‘regular software engineer aspiring to become an Evil Galactic Emperor’.

The ability to see the best in any situation  and a fantastic sense of humor are highly valued Andrii’s qualities. And so is his focus on teamwork and helping junior developers to grow and realize their potential. It’s not a surprise that he managed to boost the productivity of the company’s development department by 30%.

Andrii always strives to get better at what he does. And today he is sharing some of his favorite sources that can help all developers, QAs, and other IT professionals to reach new heights in their professions.

Best Books for Programmers as Recommended by Andrii Bohatyr

Now’s the moment. You’re standing amidst the dusty bookshelves trying to pick out something robust and relevant. It doesn’t matter if you’re a Developer, young and eager to learn, a Project Manager with your eyes shining, or a QA Engineer with a never-ending itch to explore new horizons. Here you go! Below is a comprehensive compilation for any IT-related professional. I wish I could call it ultimate, but it is rather streamlined in the chaos of modern development hype and trends.

Clean Code: A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship – Robert C. Martin

This one may help you to differentiate “good” and “evil”. It helps you transform an ugly and smelly pile of code into shimmering gold. Naming conventions, formatting, proper commenting, exception handling, unit testing – it’s all there!
Amazon link

Code Complete: A Practical Handbook of Software Construction – Steve McConnell

This book emphasizes the construction of software, which is a large part of software development, fostering programmer’s productivity enormously. It covers major aspects of detailed design, coding, and debugging, as well as unit and integration testing. It’s one of the timeless pieces in the art of software development.

Amazon link

Clean Architecture: A Craftsman’s Guide to Software Structure and Design – Robert C. Martin

Uncle Bob writes simply, cleanly, and with enough examples. Also, he’s writing without delving into excessively complicated details. It is a cornerstone to understanding the architecture and building applications as a solid entity. It also explains what the good and bad patterns are. Martin describes some of the software projects from his personal experience and what he learned from them.

Amazon link

Test-Driven Development: By Example – Kent Beck

The book focuses on TDD practices, showcases, and the implementation of numerous programming tasks. It delivers the mindset and approach when applying test-driven development. The author highlights the Patterns for Test-Driven Development and helps to master TDD as a whole.

Amazon link

The Pragmatic Programmer: From Journeyman to Master – Andrew Hunt, David Thomas

This book is designed to make you think and challenge yourself and the way you currently do things. Andrew Hunt and David Thomas were kind enough to transform their years of experience and knowledge into a book with practical advice you can apply instantly. This is rather a conversation than a book, it’s easy and fun to read. Each chapter gives tips on multiple topics, such as estimating, testing, debugging, prototyping, effective communication, and much more.

Amazon link

The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering – Frederick P. Brooks Jr.

The Mythical Man-Month is essentially a collection of old-school articles. But those can still be considered one of the fundamental sources for software engineering. While reading this book it’s hard to deny that software architecture and the personality of an architect can influence the implementation. Some chapters stress that an architect should have their own idea of implementing things while accepting alternative approaches. It’s a must-read as an introduction to project management and leadership.

Amazon link

Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams – Tom DeMarco

It’s one of the best books for programmers about the pitfalls and practices in software development. Its content revolves around managing human resources, having a decent work and office environment, and the “right” people and atmosphere in place. It fosters understanding and introducing a better alignment between team members and a culture of quality. Remember: people are not just resources. That’s what you’ll learn here.

Amazon link

More posts from the Devtorium crew members:

QA Software Testing: Types, Methods, Techniques

You can’t launch a great app without extensive QA software testing. It’s simply impossible because testing is a crucial stage that weeds out the bugs. Of course, nothing is truly perfect in our world. But QA testing is the way to make sure your app comes as close to perfection as possible.

However, before you go looking for the best software testing services company, you need to know what tests you need. There are dozens of options that can work for your project. So keep reading to understand what will be the best choice for you.

Manual Vs. Automated QA Software Testing

First of all, it’s imperative to understand that QA software testing can be automated and manual. Moreover, you must know that you need to use both to achieve the best results. Also, manual testing is much more expensive because it requires highly-qualified professional labor. However, it’s the type that runs a higher risk of errors because of human involvement.

Automated tests are incredibly varied and robust. They can boost the speed and accuracy of testing as well as make it more affordable. However, it’s crucial to know that automated QA solutions are only as good as the test scripts they are based on. If the script can’t account for a complex series of events accurately, the result will be faulty. Therefore, quality is vital when choosing automated QA software testing automation services.

In addition, you need to know that software testing can be functional, which tests the system’s operability, and non-functional. Non-functional QA testing covers all other types of tests. For example, use it to assure the quality of the system’s UI/UX interface, response speed, etc.

QA Software Testing: Types of Tests

Unit Tests

The lowest, simplest, and most easily-automated type of QA software testing is unit tests. These are the tests that analyze individual functions and methods of the classes as well as modules and components. They test the lowest level elements of the software solution.

Integration Tests

Your application isn’t going to be a single element. Therefore, you need to rely on integration testing to assess how all services and modules go together. All integrations within the application must be tested, so this type of service is much more complex and expensive. Moreover, you need to have most of the solution up and running to perform this testing.

Functional Tests

As mentioned above, functional testing assesses the system’s essential functions. Simply put, it determines if the app meets its business goals. Similar to integration testing, functional tests are complex because they must assess multiple components and their relationships. However, note that these tests only assess the system’s output. Therefore, they do not focus on the process itself and might not ascertain where precisely the issue is in the chain that leads to a bad result. Also, unlike integration testing, functional tests don’t check the ability to send a query to the database. Instead, they determine if the database sends the correct answer based on the set product requirements.

End-to-End Tests

End-to-end QA software testing can be rather complex. It’s a type of test that verifies an entire process from end to end. It can be a simple process, like logging in, or something more complicated, like email verification. Depending on the scenario, these tests can be rather hard to automate and maintain in that environment. Therefore, it’s usually best to run them periodically and instead focus on simpler integration unit tests to find weaknesses.

Performance Tests

Performance testing assesses the system under an increased workload. It’s an expensive but necessary test, especially in preparation for an expansion or a “hot” season. For example, eCommerce platforms would want to run a performance test before holiday sales. Note that it’s a non-functional test. So, it can be delayed for a while, depending on your system and objectives.

Acceptance Tests

Acceptance testing is performed when the entire application is up and running. At this time, the test will determine if it meets the business objectives set by the owner. The tester will replicate user behaviors in-app to assess every feature. They can go as far as measuring the entire system’s performance. Acceptance tests can be used to evaluate and approve/reject changes in the existing system.

Smoke Tests

Smoke testing is a quick and straightforward way to ascertain your app’s basic functionality. Your software testing services company is likely to run them right after deployment to see if the application is running as it should. In addition, these tests will help determine which more expensive QA services you will need further.

QA software testing process step by step.

QA Software Testing Methodologies

Waterfall Model

The waterfall model is straightforward. That’s its defining quality because all processes within it move sequentially (logically following each other). Note that a new phase can begin only when the previous one ends in this model. QA software testing in the waterfall model will start at the requirements phase, where all project requirements are outlined. The testing will also follow the development phases.

This QA software testing method is simple to manage. However, there is no way to speed up the process or effectively deal with unplanned events.

Iterative Development

Interestingly, the iterative development methodology is based on the waterfall model. However, unlike the original, the iterative model comprises multiple components. Each of those components is made up of numerous iterations of the waterfall model. So, the testing process can start after every single iteration is complete.

This method allows more flexibility. However, the process might become unduly complicated because testing feedback must be provided and processed at the end of every iteration.

Agile Methodology

The agile software development methodology is prevalent today due to its high efficiency. In this model, the requirements don’t remain constant throughout the development process. Therefore, the agile method can accommodate many factors and even change the project drastically over time. As a result, the development runs in short fast cycles. The model focuses on the communication between developers and customers instead of tools.

QA software testing approach for this development method is also incremental. It means that the project goes through extensive testing after every release. This approach dramatically reduces the number of bugs left at the final release.

On the one hand, the agile method allows minimizing risks and losses. On the other hand, as it relies a lot on constant communication with the customer, the pressure and added time requirements can mess with the development process.

Extreme Programming

Extreme programming is, in fact, a type of agile software development. Development cycles in this model are short, so developers constantly present short batches of code to the customer. Then, once the review passes, they start on the next piece.

In essence, extreme programming is a test-driven development approach. The product is tested multiple times before and after any new feature is added.

This method is excellent for projects where the customer isn’t sure of the final product’s features. But this process can also take a long time due to communication and brainstorming.

Bottom Line: Do You Need to Hire a Software Testing Services Company?

In a word, yes! If you are looking for custom software development services, QA software testing must be a part of the process. A good development company will have its own QA team to ensure that you get the best result within the shortest amount of time.

Contact us if you want to create top-quality software fast!

QA Software Testing Basics: Functional Testing

Did you know that a third of all users will delete an app after encountering a single bug? That’s how vital QA software testing is!

Software testing and QA services are essential if you want to launch a product that can really make it to success. Quality Assurance is what gives you a fighting chance. But you need to understand that many processes go into ensuring the quality of the product. Simply put, many types of testing need to be performed. And you have to use all of them to crush all the bugs.

This article will help you in this by explaining all about functional testing.

Functional QA Software Testing: What It Is & Why You Need It

Functional testing is a type of QA software testing that determines if the product meets all its functional requirements and specifications. Note that it’s a rather specific type of so-called black-box testing. Therefore, it doesn’t study the actual code of the product. Instead, it focuses on assuring the quality of the following:

  • APIs
  • User interface
  • Client/Server communication
  • Database
  • Security

This list might include more features depending on the app’s intended functionality.

You need to use this type of software QA & testing to ensure that the app’s functionality actually works. Moreover, this is the stage that assures the basic usability of the product and how the user will access it. In addition, this is where you can see if the error conditions are set up correctly. It means you’ll know whether error messages appear as they must.

How to Do Functional QA Software Testing Step-by-Step

Before starting any functional software testing and quality assurance, you have to study the product’s functional requirements. Without understanding them, the tester won’t be able to see if the application works exactly as it should.

Once you get this part down, the testing is straightforward. Basically, you’ll just have to repeat the following four steps over and over again until all functionalities are tested.


First, identify the data that needs to be tested or test input. It should be outlined in the Functional Requirements of the product.


Next, select test input values and compute the outcomes. It will enable you to see how the app should perform under the given parameters.


Finally, execute the test.


The last step is to compare the actual results you get after running the test to the expected values computed in Step 2.

Rinse and repeat until all functionalities are tested. The work of a software quality assurance consulting expert might seem boring, and it definitely is repetitive. However, it’s one of the most fundamentally essential steps in the process of software development.

Functional QA Software Testing Automation

QA automation services & tools

  • TestComplete.
    TestComplete is a comprehensive automated software testing and quality assurance tool. The tool is rather sophisticated, which enables it to run a variety of different tests. All in all, it’s a solution you can use to test at a scale. However, even a top-quality tool cannot be a complete substitute for hiring a professional software testing services company.
  • Selenium.
    Selenium is an open-source solution that makes QA automation services easy. The tool is very popular because it’s user-friendly and rather reliable. It’s also free. But you have to understand that this version will have minimal functionality.
  • Tricentis Tosca.
    Tricentis Tosca is an end-to-end software testing and quality assurance solution that implements the approach used in the Agile method development. It’s a very effective and complex tool that can provide reports that are easy to understand.
  • SoapUI.
    SoapUI is an excellent tool for automating software testing and QA services. It’s another open-source solution and works exceptionally well for web apps. The tool is written in Ruby. It’s the thing you need if you want to test the app’s performance in a web browser.

Functional Vs. Non-Functional QA Software Testing

The main difference between functional and non-functional testing of a product is that the former follows the solution’s Functional Specifications. Non-functional software quality assurance services, on the other hand, are focused on studying the app’s performance “in real life”. So, for example, they will check parameters like scalability and speed. Essentially, this type of testing tells you how well the application works from the user’s point of view.

Meanwhile, functional software testing and quality assurance boil down to manual testing of what the product does. The goal here is to determine if the application meets the requirements outlined in its business documentation.

Note that while they might seem like a basic step, using the functional software quality assurance services is vitally important. Also, this is the testing you must execute first. It’s because this is the stage where you get to understand the app’s basic usability.

Bottom Line: Functional QA Software Testing Done Right Is Your First Step to Success

There are many software QA & testing mistakes to avoid. But the biggest mistake you can actually make is to skip functional testing. That’s a must-have step if you want to create a product that will work well enough for people to really start using it.

Of course, you might discover some bugs even after launch. It’s why you need to keep improving and updating your app constantly. Also, as we’ve mentioned in this post, regular updates will help you stay relevant in the App Store.

The best solution is always to use the services of a development company that already has a dedicated team of QA software testing experts. This way, all testing and fixing can be done more effectively and smoothly “in house”.

If you want to learn how to do this or have any questions about functional testing, contact us!


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