VectorCAST 5.1 Supports Test Driven Development, Continuous Integration

Vector Software, the leading provider of software test tools for embedded systems, announced support for the Agile methodology’s Test Driven Development (TDD) and Continuous Integration (CI). This new functionality available in VectorCAST v5.1 extends the traditional unit and integration test capabilities currently used in Waterfall or V-Model software development methodologies.

To date, the VectorCAST tool suite has been used by embedded developers to test individual C/C++ modules (unit testing) or groups of modules that make up a functional area of the application (integration testing). This pure unit testing approach allows the developer to ensure that the low-level requirements attributed to a unit are implemented correctly, while at the same time verifying the completeness of the testing via code coverage analysis. Since the code has already been written at this point, one concern is that the unit tests will simply test what the code was written to do, rather than what the code is required to do.

TDD aims to solve this problem by moving test case development earlier in the process to a point after the initial design is completed, but before the code is written. “This ‘test first’ approach is becoming very popular for the development of embedded and non-embedded applications” said Bill McCaffrey, Director of Marketing at Vector Software.

Unlike most of the available unit testing framework tools used in TDD (Wikipedia lists 38 of them) which require the unit tests and the associated test harness to be constructed manually, VectorCAST/C++ creates the test harness automatically and provides a simple to use GUI to define input data and expected results for a particular test. With v5.1, VectorCAST/C++ has been extended to build the test harness before the application source code is written. This automation lends itself not only to a test first approach, but also to a continuous integration approach with the automated regression test tool VectorCAST/Manage. Manage allows development teams to integrate and test their work automatically and re-execute entire test suites, on-target, on a daily basis, and/or multiple times per day.

About Vector Software
Vector Software, Inc. is the leading independent provider of automated software testing tools for developers of safety-critical embedded applications. Vector Software’s VectorCAST line of products, automate and manage the complex tasks associated with unit, integration, and system level testing. The VectorCAST tools support the C, C++, and Ada programming languages.