Sunday, April 22, 2012

Advantages of Fitnesse over traditional testing tools

Currently I'm part of a team that tries to introduce test automation to our organization. We are developing products for the healthcare sector with relatively long release cycles due to high regulatory requirements. These long release cycles are resulting mainly because of high manual test efforts and missing test automation. There were some discussions which tools to use for test automation. Two main possibilities are available:
  • Traditional commercial, heavyweight, GUI-based, record and replay tools like HP QuickTest Professional, IBM Rational Robot, QF-Test or Borland SilkTest.
  • Agile Acceptance test tools like Fit/Fitnesse.

In a pilot project we found some advantages of Fitnesse over traditional commercial testing tools:

No Licence costs for Fitnesse

Ok, in a big company it's not a big issues to spend some money for commercial tools, but even then you will not buy licences for every machine and every employee. Fitnesse we use on every developer machine, on every tester laptop, on every machine in the test lab, on laptops for presentations in meetings. You can use it on every machine you want without filling order forms and waiting weeks for completion of the order process. So the use of Fitnesse is not limited to the test specialist but instead we can use it cross-functional for application specialists, testers, developers and software architects.

Simple Installation of Fitnesse

Fitnesse can be brought to a machine simply by copying a folder with its subfolders. Or you can run it from an USB stick, which is quite practical for tests on systems wich are not connected to the corporate network.

Test-First approach with Fitnesse

It is a natural approach to write down the test specification before or during the development of the software, because developers need the input to provide test fixtures for connecting the Fitnesse tests with the production code.

Please refer to Elisabeth Hendrickson's blog for similar and more advantages: Agile-Friendly Test Automation Tools/Frameworks