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A Comparative Study of Manual and Automated Testing for Industrial Control Software

Fulltext:


Note:

This material is presented for the dissemination of scientific work. Copyright and all rights therein are retained by authors or by other copyright holders. All persons copying this information are expected to adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. In some cases, this work may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.

Publication Type:

Conference/Workshop Paper

Venue:

International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation


Abstract

Automated test generation has been suggested as a way of creating tests at a lower cost. Nonetheless, it is not very well studied how such tests compare to manually written ones in terms of cost and effectiveness. This is particularly true for industrial control software, where strict requirements on both specification-based testing and code coverage typically are met with rigorous manual testing. To address this issue, we conducted a case study in which we compared manually and automatically created tests. We used recently developed real-world industrial programs written in the IEC 61131-3, a popular programming language for developing industrial control systems using programmable logic controllers. The results show that automatically generated tests achieve similar code coverage as manually created tests, but in a fraction of the time (an average improvement of roughly 90%). We also found that the use of an automated test generation tool does not result in better fault detection in terms of mutation score compared to manual testing. Specifically, manual tests more effectively detect logical, timer and negation type of faults, compared to automatically generated tests. The results underscore the need to further study how manual testing is performed in industrial practice and the extent to which automated test generation can be used in the development of reliable systems.

Bibtex

@inproceedings{Enoiu4577,
author = {Eduard Paul Enoiu and Adnan Causevic and Daniel Sundmark and Paul Pettersson},
title = {A Comparative Study of Manual and Automated Testing for Industrial Control Software},
note = {This material is presented for the dissemination of scientific work. Copyright and all rights therein are retained by authors or by other copyright holders. All persons copying this information are expected to adhere to the terms and constraints invoked by each author's copyright. In some cases, this work may not be reposted without the explicit permission of the copyright holder.},
month = {March},
year = {2017},
booktitle = {International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation },
url = {http://www.es.mdh.se/publications/4577-}
}