When a non-important "step" fails, should the TC fail too?



  • Let's say you are testing a calculation done by function X.

    The test case looks like this:

    1. Open the menu and select F X
    2. Confirmation dialog appears
    3. Function screen appears
    4. Enter 10 and hit ENTER - 1000 appears.

    Now the thing is - what if the confirmation dialog does not show up but I can go on and the function works as expected? Because the primary objective of the test case, calculation verification, works. Making it fail because of a supporting step does not make too much sense - it would mask that the primary feature works (setting the whole TC as Failed). How should I approach this?



  • Honestly, in this example, I'm confused about why the confirmation dialog should appear at all. Isn't it just a useless step that slows down the user? There might be some reason for that that I can't get from the short description, but I'm a bit suspicious, that's why I'm bringing it up.

    And I think that's exactly what you should do with the rest of your team. As a Tester, you should point out all these areas where you feel there's something fishy. In this case, you're thinking whether the confirmation dialog is important for the test, I think you should take it even further and ask whether or not the confirmation dialog is important at all.



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