For this release of OpenACS we are using a slightly different and simpler scheme for collecting the efforts of the test volunteers.
I advance we'd like to thank everyone who commits time and effort to this important process.
Here is a brief summary of how we'd like to see testing recorded/performed.
- 1)A package is assigned to a volunteer.
- 2)The Tester exercises the various functions available by a combination of following the provided documentation (if it exists) and by using judgement to determine the packages functions.
- 3)Testers liaise with the package maintainer to ensure they are testing correctly/completely where this is not immediately clear. Package maintains are usually very helpful in answering these queries when related to testing if you explain clearly what you need to know and what its for.
- 4)Testers adopt their own process/method for testing, however we expect that commonly a tester will prepare a list/plan of the tests they are going to perform and the anticipated results.
- 5)Optionally (and we'd like to encourage this) Testers will send those test plans to myself so that I can build up a fully documented test plan. A simple text document with 'Test description' and 'Anticipated results' if fine as a minimum. If details of how to perform a test can also be included that is highly beneficial.
- 6)Once a test has completed testing a package to the best of their ability and knowledge we ask them to log-on to the test server and create a 'Acceptance Certificate'. This is a new concept designed to be a simple, quick and communicative way of informing the community of the results of testing.
- 7)A Test Certificate is a simple form to fill in (takes about 2 minutes) that produces a certificate of quality for a package/tester combination. In this form we ask you to indicate your own experience level, the degree to which you were able to test the package, and you're assessment of its current quality.
- 8)There is provision with each certificate to record specific observations when you feel them to be highly relevant.
- 9)If any bugs or errors are found we want you to record those in the existing SDM at openacs.org.
- 10) There is no step 10 ;)
Its hard to say how much testing is required as each package differs in size and complexity, but past experience has shown that several hours is typical.
If you are limited in time or have relatively little ACS experience don't worry. You will be surprised how valuable the work you can do is. Furthermore the test certificates allow you to indicate that, so that your work can be reviewed in the right context.
The new certification package is all but ready to go live, but a demo version can be viewed at
Please feel free to log in and experiment. Create certificates to you're hearts content and give me any feedback if you like. As you'll see its very straightforward.
I will be in touch directly with volunteers shortly to assign packages. My thanks in advance for you're valuable contribution.
Testing InstallationsWe can help people who are newbie/non-tech by installing packages on-line for you to test with. This facility is provided by Hub.org.
If you'd like to use this please send your request to Jon Pike who will happily set this up for you.
To help keep Jon's workload manageable, please only request this facility if you really can't manage locally.