Database Testing – Challenges


To perform database testing successfully, a tester should collect the requirements from all the sources, like technical and functional requirements. There is a possibility that a few requirements are at a high level, so there is a need to breakdown those requirements into the small parts. Testing database is a complex task and the testers face many challenges while performing this testing. Most common database testing challenges are −

Testing scope is too large

A tester needs to identify the test items in database testing otherwise he may not have a clear understanding of what he would test and what he would not test. Therefore, if you are clear on the requirement, you may waste a lot of time testing uncritical objects in the database.

When you have a list of objects to test, next is to estimate the effort required to design the tests and execute the tests for each test item. Depending on their design and data size, some database tests may take a long time to execute.

As the database size is too large, it becomes a big challenge to find out the objects that have to be tested and those which are to be left out.

Scaled-down test database

Normally testers are provided with a copy of the development database to test. That database only have little data, which is sufficient to run the application. So there is a need to test the development, staging and as well as production database system.

Changes in database structure

This is one of the common challenges in DB testing. Sometimes, it happens that you design or execute a test, and the database structure has been changed at that time. This is necessary that you should be aware of the changes made to the database during testing.

Once the database structure changes, you should analyze the impact of the changes and modify the tests. In addition, if multiple users use the test database, you would not be sure about the test results so you should ensure that the test database is used for testing purpose only.

Another challenge in DB testing is that you run multiple tests at the same time. You should run one test at a time at least for the performance tests. You do not want your database performing multiple tasks and under-reporting performance.

Complex test plans

The database structure is normally complex and it has huge data, so there is a possibility that you are executing incomplete or same tests repeatedly. So there is a need to create a test plan and proceed accordingly and checking the progress regularly.

Good understanding of SQL

To test a database, you should have a good knowledge of SQL queries and the required database management tools.