International Journal of Software Engineering and Knowledge Engineering 16 (5): 677-703 (2006)

Integration Testing of Context-Sensitive Middleware-Based Applications:
A Metamorphic Approach

W.K. Chan 2 , T.Y. Chen 3 , Heng Lu 4 , T.H. Tse 5 , and Stephen S. Yau 6

[paper from World Scientific | technical report TR-2006-06]


During the testing of context-sensitive middleware-based software, the middleware checks the current situation to invoke the appropriate functions of the applications. Since the middleware remains active and the situation may continue to evolve, however, the conclusion of some test cases may not easily be identified. Moreover, failures appearing in one situation may be superseded by subsequent correct outcomes and, therefore, be hidden.

We alleviate the above problems by making use of a special kind of situation, which we call checkpoints, such that the middleware will not activate the functions under test. We recommend testers to generate test cases that start at a checkpoint and end at another. Testers may identify relations that associate different execution sequences of a test case. They then check the results of each test case to detect any contravention of such relations. We illustrate our technique with an example that shows how hidden failures can be detected. We also report the experimentation carried out on an RFID-based location-sensing application on top of a context-sensitive middleware.

Keywords: Context-aware application, integration testing, metamorphic testing, RFID testing.

1. This work is supported in part by the General Research Fund of the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong (project nos. 714504 and 717506) and a grant of The University of Hong Kong.
2. Department of Computer Science, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Hong Kong. Part of the research was done when Chan was with The University of Hong Kong.
3. Centre for Software Analysis and Testing, Swinburne University of Technology, Hawthorn 3122, Australia.
4. Department of Computer Science, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong.
5. (Corresponding author.)
Department of Computer Science, The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong.
6. Computer Science and Engineering Department, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287, USA.


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