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Quality Assurance/Sanity testing - what does it really mean?


There is a concept in Software testing that is referred to as Sanity testing. What should be the approach taken to Sanity testing esp. if you have a large complex software product. Should you essentially just treat it like a smoke test or treat a sanity test as going around the application clicking and making sure that things open????

References to "Sanity" testing I've heard, are references to bounds testing.  For example, a given piece of code has inputs.  Code that processes the input expects the input to have certain characteristics, or to not have certain characteristics.  Sanity checks are run to determine what actually happens when the expectations aren't met.

What it means will depend on how the organization views software reliability.  Perhaps upper and lower limits are used to ensure the code works.  Perhaps a value that is 1 greater than the upper and 1 smaller than the lowest are used to see if the code can handle the errant data.  Perhaps still, a certain number of "out-of-value" values are required for testing.

Does this help?
- John

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John Crout


Quality Assurance in software development, and its role in cybersecurity. Quality Assurance ensures accountability, traceability, safety and reliability. Difference between QA and QC, and between functions that are QA and those that are Test. Will also address questions about QA, or the difference between QA and QC, and about Phillip Crosby's thoughts on the subject.


Developing safe and reliable software for safety-critical applications in regulated and non-regulated industries. Former member of RTCA, Inc. Member of RTCA Special Committees 135 and 167. (The latter wrote "Certification Guidelines for Software Development, RTCA/DO-178B). (SC-135 wrote, "Environmental Test Procedures for Airborne Equipment, RTCA/DO-160C). For SC-167/DO-178B, was a member of Working Group IV (Verification and Validation Test), and Working Group V (Configuration Management and Quality Assurance).

Information Systems Security Association (ISSA) United States Coast Guard Auxiliary (USCG Auxiliary) Software Engineering Institute (SEI) (ISC)2 ACM

RTCA/DO-178B, "Software Considerations in Airborne Systems and Equipment Certification", (member of SC-167), RTCA/DO-160C, "Environmental Conditions and Test Procedures for Airborne Equipment", (member of SC-135) Student Doctor Magazine EE Times

Master of Public Health (Epidemiology and Biostatistics) Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering (Computer Engineering Option) FEMA (ICS-100, -200, -210, -700, 800) United States Coast Guard Defense Information Systems Agency United States Coast Guard Auxiliary Crosby Quality Workgroup Facilitator Trainer Crosby Quality Education System Wisconsin University

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