Updated April 6, 2023
What is Database Testing Tools?
Learning to read a book in some other language is futile if one doesn’t know the alphabet in the same language. Hence, at first we will learn about the database in brief and then look into different categories of databases so that it becomes clearer on what categories are present in a database to test and some failure points in those categories to watch out for. If we want to understand the database in layman terms, a database is a supporting base for the data. What it essentially implies is that database is a collection of information in a structured format and stored electronically in a computer system. But in reality, there is more to just the storage of data in a database. Database does support manipulation of data as well. Loosely, in our industry, the database is referred to as DBMS (Database management system).
When Database needs Testing?
Now, the essential point is what are the points where the database would need testing. Below are a few points which one needs to keep in mind while performing database testing. One can even consider them as a point of failure while developing a plan to test databases.
Mapping of Data
There are several instances where data is transmitted back and forth between UI and DB. This calls for high consistency in the mapping of the correct field in between them. Essentially, one lists down the requirements as a part of requirements documents. If the mapping of the data is correct, a testing plan should also look into the fact that while action on the application is performed an action known as CRUD (Create, Retrieve, Update and Delete) is successfully invoked or not and if the action performed is correct or not.
Transactional Verification of DB
In all transactions across DB, Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, and Durability(ACID) properties need to be adhered to. This is to make sure that even if one part of the transaction fails, the entire transaction fails (Atomicity), any transaction leads to a valid state of DB (Consistency), parallel processing or chronological processing of transaction shouldn’t matter (Isolation), no external sources can change the data once a transaction is completed (Durability).
Integrity of Data
The data should be updated in accordance with the latest update present after a transaction. In terms of integrity one needs to make sure that the data is the most recent one across all forms and screens. In this the main portion to look is the CRUD operation and if all the options are performing their designated tasks. For example, if a user initiates remove the action, the “Delete” operation on the DB needs to be performed.
Business Rules Incorporation
As databases grow more complex, relational triggers, stored procedures need to be upgraded to more complex ones. Hence in the current scenario there is a need to have appropriate SQL queries for validation of the business rules into the database.
Explanation of Database Testing Tools
Now that we have a clearer picture of why one needs to test the database, it is secondly important to know what to test. So for the same we have broken down this section to incorporate the essential “What to test” and corresponding tools required for testing out our database.
1. Data Security
With ever-growing cybercrime in the current market scenario, this testing tops our list of categories required for database testing. It is very similar to people putting multiple locks at home to prevent them from burglary. Same goes for enterprise data. One needs to make sure that these data don’t fall into wrong hands and hence put multiple locks to secure them. The durability of such locks is tested by many data security testing tools, but IBM Optim Data Privacy is one of the widely used testing tool with a close competition with Protegrity Data Security
2. Load Testing
With growing user base after the popularity of an application, it becomes imperative to test out the capability of the Database to handle high load processing. In this type of testing, one needs to identify any failure points where a DB would have high response time and hence leading to poor performance. In this process one simulates the load from users and test the durability of the DB to handle high load. Some widely used tools for this testing are: Web Performance, Rad View, Mercury.
3. Test Data Generator Tools
While testing the utility of the database it is equally important to create data which is sensible and replicate the ones in the production so as to test how the database will behave in the production. There are variety of tools used for these, but some of the popular ones are: DataProf, Redgate SQL Data Generator, Data Factory, DTM Data Generator, Turbo Data.
4. Test Data Management Tool
This testing aims at checking and testing the quality of the software developed by the use of the database. This action is achieved by segregating test data from actual data to test out the capabilities and for sensitive data it uses masking. And when a subset of data is made a comparison of actual and baseline data is compared to check the accuracy of the software or application. Most widely used tool is IBM Optim Test Data Management, but there are other tools as well to accomplish tasks like DataProf and Informatica.
5. Unit Testing Tools
The main aim of this genre of testing is to test out even the smallest, atomic level of feature programmed using the database. In the intent of testing out the feature we stand to test if every individual part of the database object is working as expected or not. For achieving the target most widely used tools are: SQLUnit, TSQLUnit, DBFit, DBUnit
In a concluding note, we would like to emphasize that database testing is an important step in validating the usability of an application which uses a database in the background. One needs to incorporate database testing in all software development life cycle planning and some of the automation tools listed above does the fantastic job of testing out common functionality for all databases. Though it can be completely ignored about the manual testing that would be needed to test out intricate functionality of the database.
This is a guide to Database Testing Tools. Here we discuss the Introduction to Database Testing Tools and various Database Testing Tools along with its key points. You can also go through our other related articles to learn more–