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Creating a flawless, high-quality app is a long journey. Along that journey are the inevitable road bumps — unavailable or incomplete test data, limited test coverage, and incorporating complex functionality like two-factor authentication to name a few.
Yet one of the most tedious and insistent road bumps is the presence of software bugs throughout production. Finding and removing these bugs can be incredibly time-consuming and, if they are not caught in time, can cause headaches further along in the development process.
Debugging software is a crucial aspect of every testing team’s process (or should be). The only way to deliver an app your team can be proud of is to painstakingly remove those bugs. But it does not have to be as difficult as it could be.
In this blog, we will discuss what debugging software means, what the software debugging process entails, common debugging strategies, and why using Perfecto for debugging software makes the process easier.
Software debugging is the process of identifying and fixing errors in a software’s source code. If software does not work as needed, developers will examine the code to identify what is causing the issue. Teams use software debugging tools like Perfecto to run the software in a controlled environment in order to check the code line by line and identify bugs.
The reason why bugs are so common in software development is due to the various programming languages that are required; the differing languages can create errors in the code. Common code errors that require debugging are semantic errors, syntax errors, runtime errors, and logic errors. The software debugging process is crucial for an improved end-user experience and overall quality of the software.
Related Reading:Test Smarter, Not Harder: A Guide to Efficient Testing
While the process of software debugging can be tedious and time-consuming, the steps in the process below are relatively simple and straightforward.
Developers and testers report bugs discovered through web and mobile app testing. This means locating the precise line of code causing the issue. To get through the testing feedback in such a short amount of time, teams should leverage comprehensive reporting methods that give fast and actionable insights on defects.
There are four main reasons why tests fail:
Issues with test data.
Analyzing the bug in the source code by viewing all data values and state changes will help determine its level of impact on overall software quality. This will aid in prioritization and development of a timeline for fixing the bug.
This is another instance when comprehensive reporting can be just as important as bug detection. Organizations that do not have coordinated reporting methods can end up spending much more time than necessary on backlog looking at the other reasons why tests fail.
Developers fix the bug or bugs in question and run the software through tests again to be certain the issue is resolved. Fixing bugs is aided greatly by leveraging a variety of methods such as heatmaps, insights from reports, and knowledge of common failure reasons to spend no more than 30 minutes evaluating and resolving issues behind failed test cases.
Successful organizations use the tools at their disposal to cut through the noise and pinpoint actual failures that need a closer look.
Below are helpful software debugging strategies to help reduce errors and time spent debugging.
Conduct the software debugging in a separate environment than the machine you have been working on. Think of it as a clean slate from which to work.
Work backwards from where a critical error occurred to identify exactly where in the line of code the bug is residing. This is a popular method for smaller software programs — it becomes increasingly more difficult when there are more lines of code.
This is a form of software debugging when using virtual devices to conduct your software testing. While debugging in the cloud, it is vital to continuously compare the cloud environment with the simulated environment to ensure there is configuration consistency.
Log files are a developer’s best friend for software debugging. They contain important information like run times and operating system states. Study these log files to identify and fix bugs.
Related Reading:A Guide to Solving the Toughest Mobile Testing Challenges
Perfecto is known for helping produce consistently high-quality apps for a reason. Of the many industry-leading features, our remote debugging functionality via DevTunnel saves hours (and even days!) establishing a test environment needed to reproduce test failures and fix bugs.
Developers can test both on mobile native and mobile web apps remotely by leveraging remote USB connections to real devices from their IDE. Additionally, using Perfecto for software debugging means access to the widest variety of devices directly from your IDE.
Remote device testing with Perfecto also makes bug validation a breeze. Validate your work quickly on real platforms when executing tests in Espresso, XCUITest, Selenium, or other test frameworks directly from your machine. Rapid validations unlock faster delivery and resources saved.
Software debugging can be a tedious, time-consuming process. Not to mention the ripple effect they can have if not caught properly throughout the development process — often resulting in catastrophic issues in the quality of the software.
But with Perfecto, you have a partner that makes the software debugging simpler and faster. You owe it to your apps to make them free from bugs to provide a seamless user experience.
Get started with Perfecto today with a 14-day Free Trial!