Test Data Generation with GEDIS Studio Online Tool

In the second part of Practical Ways of Designing Test Data tutorial, we cover the areas as:

  • Intro to TDM Automated Tools;
  • Purpose of Automated TDM;
  • Test Data Sub-setting;
  • Intro to GEDIS Studio Online;
  • Access & Registration
  • Test Data Generation
  • Data Correlation and Cross-Dependency
  • Parametrization using GEDIS Studio
  • Automated Test Data Generation Tools List; and
  • Wrap up

Introduction to Test Data Management (TDM) Automated Tools :

Previously, the test data management tools used to create the data set for testing, but in most cases, they were not able to distribute data set as planned. And it was one of the primary reasons for the inability of the testing teams to deliver the quality application within the expected timeline.  Today’s, TDM tools are designed in many ways not only to accelerate the process of the data management but also to impact the overall software development life cycle (SDLC) positively. TDM tools highly contribute to the creation of the quality software that greatly enhances the reliability of the applications under the test.

According to World Quality Report 2015-2016, Spending on Quality Assurance as a percentage of the total IT budget is projected to raise to 40% percent by 2018. And based on another report published by NIST in 2009, estimates that software errors cost only the U.S economy an estimated 59.5 billion annually, of which they expect one-third could be eliminated by improving the overall software testing processes and using automation tools.

In the current context of agile development, continuous testing enables a project team to execute tests on the basis wide-ranging test data. It is all about non-stop testing by having complete test data reflecting any AUT requirements. Figure-1 displays the overall process of the continuous testing along with its given steps for TDM.

Significant financial, banking, health, and other institutions expect the use of TDM for accurately ensuring the observance of legislative, regulatory (PII, synthetic data, etc..)., and industry standards in any given application. Personally Identifiable Information (PII) policies and other environmental constraints further pave the way for extensive use of Automated Test Data Management (TDM) tool for testing. In current complex ecosystems, classification of known and unknown PII data, as well as mapping policy to the data, are the areas that need closer scrutiny as the testers prepare and execute the testing. Today, the compliance part is considered a critical area for all stakeholders due to the substantial penalties associated with non-compliance. And we know that penalties for regulatory issues don’t only run into thousands of dollar but also harm the reputability and the credibility of the companies.

Also, CA Technologies recent research finding indicates that 30%-40% of the defects are related to the data issues in software testing. This empirically based statement on the test data further encourages the tester to focus on identifying complete data requirements in documents review and analysis in the initial phases of the application development.

Purpose of Automated Test Data Management (TDM) tool:

The primary purpose of using Automated Test Data Management tool is to have the open-handed facility of having system generating reliable and secure copies of your dataset only in minutes. TDM tools positively impact the process of rapid and quality software development cycle and the testing life cycle with specifics like:

  • Remarkably enhances the speed of data subset and synthetic data creation;
  • Creates full production clones reducing your manual efforts and time; and
  • Provides on demand working space and self-service platform for testers, developers, management, and DB administers to avoid data corruption and time delays.

When you have prepared quality data, they can efficiently minimize data and requirement defects. By doing so, you quickly fulfill 100% the testing data needs and more significantly, you are in a better position of simulating data boundary conditions as one of the testing techniques. Let’s see some of the particularities of the test data as indicated in areas like below:

  • Test Data Analysisa.Coverage

b. Profiling

  • Test Data Design

a. Object Design

b.Conditioning

  • Test Data Script Development

a. Versioning

b. Test Case Matching

  • Production Data Use

a. Masking

b. Sub-setting

By applying TDM tools in the field of software testing, you lay the foundation for contributing beyond expectations in making the test cycles release faster. Automating the process of your high volume of required data enhances the efficient use of the application development time. Additionally, you proficiently mitigate slow and complicated data setup with the generation of synthetic data. And from the cost-efficiency point of view, the use of TDM tools have a direct impact on the cost as:

  • Data integration with Test Management Tools;
  • Minimizing manual efforts in due process of data setup for testing;
  • Adequately available data for reusability;
  • QA teams become more productive, which leads to better human resource management;
  • Improvement in defect resolution by Development & Data;

The authors refer you tofigure-2 the graphic interface of the IBM InfoSphereOptim TMD for better visualizing the whole process of the Test Data Management.

Test Data Sub-setting :

One of the critical features of test data generation is to subset data across logical and or its sub-models. As you analyze the data in its given context, it becomes more valuable. You shall be able to extract data from any place in the data model based on your requirements, pre-defined keys and statistical sampling. In the process of data sub-setting what matters are to make sure that your data is in not limited to a single DBMS. Figure-3 illustrates the process of sub-setting data from the production environment to the test environment with the help of the Test Data Management Tool.

GEDIS Studio Online : 

GEDIS Studio is a free online test data management and data generator tool. Its unique features of more than 30 test data generation rules for producing test data, control of the distribution of values, correlation of values, and many other useful possibilities to aggressively test your application under the test with realistic datasets and the large data simulation. So, GEDIS Studio can design your generations in short span of time and give you the platform for organizing well the production of your test data.

One of the other major facility GEDIS Studio offers is the Sample Data files and the Sample Data Generators for the system users. They are as:

  1. Random Text Generator;
  2. Call Detail Records Generator for Telecom Apps;
  3. ATM Traffic Simulator for Banking Apps;
  4. Shopping Cart Generator for eCommerce Apps; and
  5. Personal Data Anonymization Solutions.

For any given AUT test cases data, we require realistic test data to ensure the thoroughness of our overall testing. Therefore, we always look having access to sufficient test data from the production environment, and applying Personally Identifiably Information masking without harming the practical nature of the data, and identify further requirements of test data for your designed test cases. Using GEDIS Studio, you would enjoy managing and generating your test data by having the following advantages:

  1. Realistic Data Production;
  2. Demographic Control Over the Generated Data;
  3. Highly Useful Tools for Viewing and Analyzing Generated Data; and
  4. Free Output Format for Producing CSV, HTM, XML, SQL, etc…

The use of GEDIS Studio provides you with the environment that you can operate beyond data generation in areas such as below:

  1. Populate your database based on Your testing requirements;
  2. Prepare realistic testing environment for your AUT;
  3. Automation of data production as per demand; and
  4. Production of direct importing format or SQL transactions for RDMS like; Oracle, DB2, MySQL, and SAP.

Additionally, GEDIS extends the completeness of your testing by:

  1. Producing bulk data for the unit, functional and load tests;
  2. Execution of the data-driven testing (QTP/UFT, Selenium or TestPartner); and

As of now, we have gone through what GEDIS does with its unique features. You can generate your test data online even without installing any application on your computer. Once you register your account, then you can right away start working with GEDIS Studio. GEDIS Studio allocates a personal workspace on its servers. And also, it provides you with sample projects and reference data that you can import into your workspace to generate the data of your own need.

You can create your account as you press the button “Register” after clicking on this link www.data-generator.com. Then you fill out the register form and hit “Submit” button.

Once you completed the registration process, GEDIS sends you the confirmation for your account registration along with login name and the password that you can use them for logging into the GEDIS Studio online.

After you logged in GEDIS Studio, your workspace is empty and you can either create a project or import your project from the existing data located on your workspace page on the configuration panel. When you have a project, you can insert your generator and any number of fields that you may need according to your data specification. GEDIS has provided the toolbar as any other application for quick access of its users to the major features such creating project’s components or your workspace manager. You can browse generators and your fields from “Design” explorer, and you can browse for your batches and the files from “Production” explorer located on the left side of the GEDIS Studio application.

On the right side of GEDIS Studio application, you have the configuration panel for your project components, the workspace manager, and the help views. The workspace manager displays data of the shared and private workspaces for your projects, generators, batches and other data files. For changing the rule in a particular field, select it in the design explorer and double click on new rule from the rule’s selector. According to the default model, all root fields of the generator automatically get added to the “output” file. The other feature of data display can be in CSV table or plain text.

And by clicking on your “Workspace” tab on the right side of “Design” and “Production” tabs of the application, it displays the page you see four sub-tabs of “Projects,” “Generators,” “Output” and “Data.” Under the tab “Projects” there are two folders, one the system created for you and the other is “GenieLog.” As you double click on any of the “Projects” or “Generators,” you can import them into your workspace. GEDIS Studio has made these data available for its users to operate on the tool.

As we covered to an extent the introductory part of the GEDIS Studio main page, here, you will be given a quick tour of how should we be generating test data for our project. Let’s move ahead step by step.

 

Test Data Generation

 

  1. As you are on “Design” tab, click on “Create a New Project” button located on the toolbar. By doing so, you create the new the New Batch and the Defualt.txt at the same time.
  2. On “Documentation” tab, located on the bottom part of the of the application’s right side click and give your new project the name. In this tutorial, you see the project called “Open EMR.”
  3. Once you created and named your project, you can “Add Field” from the toolbar. Then, you can call them to the fields you want for your project data to be generated. For instance, here we add two fields for “Name” and “Credit Card Number” from the documentation part of the tool on the right side.
  4. To apply Data Generation Rule based on our data needs, click on the field “Name” first. Then, click on the tab “Rules and select the generation rule “Test File Extraction.”

 

  • After you select the Text File Extraction rule, you can browse for linking the name data made available by GEDIS for you. When you click on the browse button where it says FILE, you select name file from the folder “Names” located in the folder “GenieLog.”
  • Click on your created field “Credit Card Number,” for selecting rule “Credit Card,” which will produce the credit card numbers for you.
  • When you design rules to your two given fields, you click on “Production” tab. This page will show you that your Open EMR project has the “New Batch” and the “Default.Txt.” You can specify what data you need to generate by filling the tabs like; Nb Records, where you add the number of records. Here, for example, we put the number of 100 records to be generated.

  • After you completed the data specifications that you need, you click on “Generate” button. Here in the screenshot you see in the CSV Viewer format the number of 100 names and the bank account numbers generated based on what put the criteria together.

 

 

Data Correlation and Cross-Dependency

This feature of GEDIS Studio online enables you to design generators where you require data correlation. For example; we generate a data set of two columns for “Name” and “Country,” where the names are generated in correlation to the population of each country of the world.

For doing so,

  1. we create the project Open EMR and add two fields of “Name” and “Country” in the tab of “Design.”
  2. Select the “Text File Extraction” as the generator rule for the field of “Name.”
  3. Then, you select available file data from the folder of name by browsing on the field of the “File.”
  4. Similarly, you select the generator rule of “Text File Extraction” and navigate to pick up data from the country from the path as Localization/World-Countries-Populations.txt.
  5. When you are done with designing rules to your two given fields, you click on “Production” tab. This page will show you that your Open EMR project has the “New Batch” and the “Default.Txt.” You can specify what data you need to generate by filling the tabs like; Nb Records, add the number of records that you need for both fields. Here, for example, we put the number 200 records to be generated.
  6. After you completed the data specifications that you need, you click on “Generate” button. The screen shot below displays in the CSV Viewer format the number of 200 names, country, each country population, area and the density as per the given condition of test data generation. The population distributed inside the generated test data is the same as a real-world population distribution on Earth.

Parametrization using GEDIS Studio

 The feature of the parameter is one of GEDIS database testing tool’s most efficient test data generation function. With using parameters, you can set various generators of different data values for your production. So, having the option of working with parameters helps you out in the reuse of your different data generators in real-life projects where you have multiple users.

Now, let’s create two parameterized generators with two different values for the address and the family names starting with F at our Open EMR project. As we already have created Open ERM project along with its two fields of “Name” and “Country.”

  1. You click on the “Production” tab where you would add both mentioned parameters;
  2. Click on “default.txt” located in the batch of your Open EMR;
  3. By clicking on “Parameters” tab located between the tabs of “Documentation” and “Rules,” the system displays the parameters page;
  4. Add a parameter and name it “Address”;
  5. Browse for selecting the address file from the folder “Words” by clicking on the folder icon located on the right side of your added parameter;
  6. After you selected your Address file, you can click either on the button of “View Your File as CSV” or the button of “View Your File as Text”;
  7. The same steps you would take for adding the new parameter of the Names Starting with F;

There are two added parameters that you can work on an of them as you may need for your testing as shown in the screenshot.

In addition to the illustrated features in this tutorial in the context of Open EMR project, GEDIS Studio provides you with the facilities of working in a broader spectrum of test data generation and test data management. They are as:

  • Management of your Non-Regression Testing
  • Using your Generated Test Data by Import/Export
  • Creating Test Data without using GUI of GEDIS Studio

 

 

Automated Testing Data Generation tools

 

Because of the tremendous need we have for test data throughout the process of our software testing, there are different kinds of test data automated generation tools available in the market. By going through GEDIS Studio as one of the many test data automated tools, we found out that we can create original data in almost any database or text file. These tools enable us to:

  • Creating realistic and meaningful data for a complete application testing;
  • Introduce any domain specific data for testing;
  • Applying Personally Identifiably Information (PII) legislation by masking confidential values;
  • The applications are delivered rapidly to customers by avoiding manual, time-consuming data creation;
  • Automation of thousands of customers, products or accounts items with different attributes of their id, email, name, etc.

For your comparative analysis of the listed Test Data Management Tools, here the authors collected almost most of the tools available in the market. As you are interested in going through 14 of these TDM devices’ further details,

No. Product Logo URL
1 BizDataX BizDataX
2 CA Test Data Manager (Datamaker) CA TDM (Datamaker)

 

3 Compuware’s Test Data Management Compuware’s Test Data Management
4 Data factory https://sourceforge.net/projects/data-factory/
5 Data generator http://finraos.github.io/DataGenerator/
6 DatabeneBenerator http://databene.org/databene-benerator
7 Datanamic Data Generator MultiDB Datanamic Data Gen MultiDB
8 Delphix Test Data Management Delphix Test Data Management

 

9 Double Test data management Double Test Data Management
10 DTM Data Generator DTM Data Generator
11 E-Naxos DataGen E-NaxonDataGen
12 EMS Data Generator EMS EMS Data Generator
13 GEDIS Studio Online GEDIS Studio Online
14 Generatordata.com Generatordata.com
15 GS data generator GS Data Generator

 

16 HP Test Data Management HP Test Data Management
17 Informatica Testing Data Management tool Informatica TDM Tool

 

18 InfoSphereOptim Test Data Management InfoSphereOptim Test Data Management
19 Lisa Solutions for Test Data LISA Solutions for Test Data Management
20 Original Test Data Management Original software Test Data Management
21 Redgate SQL Data Generator download
22 SAP test data migration server SAP Test Data Migration Server
23 Solix EDMS Test Data Management Solix EDMS Test Data Management
24 Spawner http://spawner.sourceforge.net/
25 TechArcis TechArcis Test Data Management
26 Test-data-generator https://github.com/presidentio/test-data-generator
27 Upscene Advanced Data Generator download
28 vTesterCenter vTestcenter
29 YDE Data Generator YDE Data Generator

 

Wrap Up

 

By using any TDM automated tool, we immensely raise the quality of our functional and performance testing. The tools help us in providing with the sufficient data coverage, quicker delivery, cost-efficiency, fewer data related defects, and the maximized learning opportunity throughout the testing process.

You have also been provided with a list of 28 Automated Test Data Generation tools that you can go through them and find the right TDM tool ensuring you with the provision of required test data.   Being exposed to many different numbers of TDM tools will enable to you choose the appropriate one after your reevaluation from each testing cycle.

The authors decide to illustrate the major features of GEDIS Studio Online. It is an available online tool that you can have access with having the sample data and many rules for initiating your test in no time.  If you need a free automation tool that does not need you to go through the installation and the database connection, GEDIS is one of them. In case you may require any professional services for designing a complete project data, you can contact them at support@genielog.com.

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