Understanding Test Suite & Test Case: Examples and Best Practices

Unlock the essentials of Test Suite & Test Case management with practical examples. Elevate your testing game with expert insights.

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A test suite is a collection of test cases that are used to validate the functionality and performance of software applications. It systematically groups various test cases to cover different aspects of the application, such as specific features or functionalities, ensuring comprehensive software testing.

In other words, it is a container encompassing a collection of test cases to perform test execution and report its status. In context of unit testing it can be a class, module, or another piece of code created to form a collection of unit tests.

Intrigued to know more about test suites? This tutorial will cover all the aspects and the best practices that should be incorporated to make one!

What is a test suite?

A test suite is a collection of various test cases that are intended to test a behavior or set of behaviors of software application or system. Grouping tests into test suites helps in managing, executing, and reporting the test results efficiently.

Effectively acting as a container for these test cases, the suite showcases precise details and objectives for each individual test case. Furthermore, it includes vital information regarding the system configuration necessary for the testing process. What sets it apart is its utilization of distinct stages to denote the ongoing test execution statusā€”ranging from Active and In-progress to Completed.

For a product purchase scenario, a well-structured test suite may encompass an array of crucial test cases, seamlessly contributing to the overall validation process:

  • Test Case 1: Login.
  • Test Case 2: Adding Products.
  • Test Case 3: Checkout.
  • Test Case 4: Logout.

There might be some instances when they are used to collect relevant test cases. Depending on the system, it may be for all of the system's functionality or a smoke test suite that includes smoke tests. Additionally, it may consist of all tests and indicate if a test should be used as a smoke test or for a particular functionality.

As depicted in image below, a test plan is segregated into test suites, which may be further segmented based on number of test cases.

Test suites

Characteristics of a test suite

It provide several benefits for the testing team and the organization. Some of the essential characteristics are:

  • They are developed after a test plan.
  • There are several tests and test cases included in it.
  • It explains the aims and objectives of the test cases.
  • Test parameters like application, environment, version, and others are incorporated in it.
  • These can be created based on the test cycle and scope.
  • It includes several kinds of testing, including functional testing and non-functional testing.
  • It offers a way to test and evaluate the applications quickly.
  • It may be used with many automation testing tools, including JUnit and Selenium.

Types of Test suites

These are divided into two categories with unique functions, i.e.,

  • Abstract test suite: It is a component of model-based testing, and it comprises a group of abstract test cases drawn from a high-level model of the system under test. The software team cannot use these directly since they are always at a high-level and do not provide specific information about the software application and test environment.
  • Executable test suite: It is developed from abstract test cases, which is executable. It offers the basic, low-level details needed to run a application. It operates at a granular level and effectively interacts with the application under test.

What type of tests make test suites useful?

The primary aim is to identify the gaps in a test so that one test case must be successfully completed before you start the next test case.

If one test case fails during sequential mode, you can stop the test case execution for entire suite. If the expected result of one test case relies on the results of other test cases, stopping the test execution might be helpful. Therefore, it is essential to look at what tests are useful for it.

  • Build verification tests: A set of test cases that carry out a basic validation of the majority of the software application's functional areas. The tests are run after each application is built and before the build is made publicly available.
  • Regression tests: A set of test cases used to perform regression testing of application functional areas.
  • Smoke tests: A group of test cases that ensure the basic functionality of a software application. Smoke tests are the initial level of testing that is carried out after changes have been made to the system under test.
  • Functional tests: A group of test cases that verifies the particular functionality of a software application. It checks the functionality of different aspects of each specific application's feature.
  • End-to-end integration tests: It ensures that integration points between products are exercised and validated across software application boundaries.

Requirements of good template

It plays a crucial role in software development life cycle (SDLC). Therefore, software testers must use a standardized predefined template to create them and specify their various aspects covered below:

  • Summary: It includes a detailed summary and to make it more comprehensive, it contain different categories of test suites.
  • Design: The design section provides information on it's design and several recommendations to improve the test coverage.
  • Formal review: After the summary and design have been specified, the team conducts a formal review that helps businesses bring their operations into compliance with industry norms and rules.
  • Precondition and postcondition: These specify and validate the conditions that must be met before and after it is run.
  • Expected results: The team outlines the success criteria for a test suite. To further test the effectiveness, these expected results are compared with the actual result.
  • Risk analysis: The team identifies all the possible risk failures that might affect the testing process and prevent the team from achieving the expected results.
  • Test cases: This template section consists of test cases and their respective test environments. The team will run these test cases to verify different aspects of the application under test.
  • Document and reports: This section contains reports and documents such as screenshots, reports, execution records, and other relevant information.

Differences: Test plan Vs Test scenario Vs Test case Vs Test suite

Software testers often get confused with the terms like test suite, test cases, test scenario, test plan. Now, we will look at their differences.

Test planTest scenarioTest caseTest suite
Defines the scope, aim, and strategy of testing.It is the functionality of any software application's features that may be tested.A test case is a significant document that contains necessary testing-related details.Test cases make up a test suite created after the test plan.
It has three types: master test plan, type-specific, and level-specific.It is carried out from the end user's perspective.It has two types: formal test cases and informal test cases.It has two types: abstract and executable.
It is created from a use case document, a product description, or a software requirement. specifications (SRS).They are developed from the use cases and ensure exhaustive test coverage.These are created using the Software Requirement Specification and generated based on the test scenarios (SRS).The team can benefit from separate test suites, which make testing simple and flexible.
It adheres to a standard template that provides information about the testing process.It outlines the different operations performed by the team on the software application.It specifies a set of requirements that help verify if the software application complies with the specified functionality.It specifies the purpose and objectives of test cases created to test the software application.

How to organize test cases in test suite?

Test suites help organize test cases into groups and structure them logically and each one includes a collection of test cases that are either directly related to it or are grouped under several sub-suites.

It is more flexible to build the required structure as a tree is flexible since there are no restrictions on the number of layers that may be constructed.

To structure and arrange a test case into logical components, a user can consider it as an application module, component, or feature set. It is easier to find a specific set of test cases.

QA teams can easily plan their testing by developing a test suite for different testing purposes, such as regression or smoke test cases. In addition, QA teams can either add or remove test cases from them.

Why does using a right test suite matter?

Software development needs a balance between speed and quality. The leverage point of software applications varies depending on the type of software applications. The two types of software applications now-a-days are web and enterprise applications. Therefore, you select the right test suite to make your testing more effective. Following are the points to explain why it matters to your business:

  • Testing web and enterprise software applications: Web services are typically dynamic, with scope and requirements constantly changing. Depending on the production metrics and customer feedback, many features are added and removed.
    Web architecture should be flexible, and end-to-end testing can be used to achieve maximum flexibility. End-to-end testing can be reliable and consistent only if it is focused on the unchanging elements of the module rather than referencing the Document Object Model (DOM) elements.
    Generally, waterfall models are used in enterprise and desktop software environments, where larger scopes of development, fewer frequent changes, more stable and reliable architectures are preferred.
    A large upfront design can be effective if the requirements are clear. For example, in case of a considerable redesign with no new features. Enterprise software developers, especially Java developers, typically prefer unit tests.
  • Benefit of fast tests: The performance of an application can have a direct impact on developer productivity. This is why performance is essential in testing. Having a short feedback loop is super important and makes your life easier. It enables you to test quickly and adjust while the costs are low.
  • Advantage of broad tests: Broad tests like end-to-end tests is helpful as they give confidence in your test code. Confidence in testing means that the results are very similar to what will happen in the actual user scenario once the software application is built.

Best practices to make a good test suite

A good test suite doesn't take a long to execute. It ensures your software application works as intended. If it encounters a bug, it will automatically return feedback to help you identify the bug's source and help you fix it. Following are the properties which makes a test suite good fit to use for software developers:

  • Fast: If a test suite includes an extensive collection of integration tests and a few unit tests, it can take much longer to execute it, whereas a fast one will give feedback more quickly and make your development process even more efficient.
  • Complete: If your test suite covers 100% of your codebase, it will identify any errors arising from tweaks to your code application. Therefore, a complete test suite gives you confidence that your software applications are working fine as intended.
  • Reliable: It provides consistent feedback, irrespective of changes that can occur outside the test scope, whereas an unreliable one can have tests that fail intermittently, with no valuable feedback about changes you've done to your application.
  • Isolated: It runs test cases without hampering other tests in the suite. However, you may require cleaning up existing test data after running a test case in your suite.
  • Maintainable: A maintainable test suite that is organized is easy to manipulate. You easily add, change, or remove test cases. To maintain your test suite, you can follow best coding practices and develop a uniform process that suits you and your team.
  • Expressive: If your test suites are easy-to-read, they can be good for documentation. Always write test scripts that are descriptive of the features you are testing. Also, try to create a descriptive and understandable for a developer to read.

Best practices to follow to create a good test suite:

  • Picking up correct programming language and frameworks: Software application is created using a variety of programming languages, each of which has advantages and disadvantages.
    The developer's experience should be considered when selecting a programming language to create an automated test suite. For instance, Python is a language of choice for developers.
    Depending on the fact that your team likes to use Python, you may also need to learn Python for this. Selecting a language that a development team is comfortable with will give you access to tutors right away who can assist you with some complex application problems.
    Select a language for your test framework that corresponds to the languages used for the software application of your organization.
    Although you may not feel personally as comfortable, you may benefit from your coworkers' programming knowledge and experience. When selecting a programming language, keep in mind the operations your test suite must do, and the documentation and support offered.
  • Necessary skills: You should start creating your test suite as soon as you have enough knowledge of programming languages and tools to choose one that best suits your requirements.
  • Developer tools: They are still important when creating and playing with code. Following questions can be asked when using developer tools:
  • Scalability: It should be designed with scalability in mind. You could be unfamiliar with concepts like page objects, regular expressions, and DRY (Don't Repeat Yourself) coding techniques. But knowing them is beneficial, especially when creating an automated test suite.

Once you've incorporated all the best practices and created your test suites, you should perform automated browser testing across real browsers, devices, and operating systems. Since device fragmentation is a challenge for every developer and tester, you must ensure the software applications are working correctly across every latest and legacy test configuration.


Continuous quality testing platforms like LambdaTest enable you to instantly perform manual and automated testing of your web and mobile applications across 3000+ real browsers, devices, and operating systems combinations. Whether you are stuck with sluggish test execution or struggling with in-house test infrastructure, the LambdaTest cloud testing platform has got you covered.

You can also subscribe to the LambdaTest YouTube Channel and stay updated with the latest tutorials around Selenium automation testing, Cypress testing, Playwright testing, CI/CD tools, and more.

Here is a quick rundown of the features offered by the LambdaTest platform.

How to maintain an automated test suite?

There are several ways to maintain automated test suites. You may want to automate your test suites to make testing easier. However, just because you've automated your test suites doesn't mean that testing will be simpler. In fact, it can make maintaining your test suite hard.

Follow these simple guidelines for easier maintenance of your automated test suites:

  • Make a test suite plan: Without a proper strategy, automated testing raises the likelihood that it will be unproductive. The definition of a test automation strategy is a crucial component of any test plan. Explain how you want to maintain your test assets in your strategy to the development team. It is indeed possible that most of the development team is unaware of your plans for maintaining your tests.
    Additionally, it is a good idea to convey to the rest of the development team that this maintenance can be a significant portion of the development effort.
  • Keep your test suites clean: As with the application being tested, your test assets will evolve. Therefore, the application requirements will also vary according to the system's requirements. Keeping your automated test suites up-to-date is also vital, requiring checking test materials regularly. Each time a new software application update is released, validity checks should be performed as soon as possible.
    Maintaining the relevance of your test suites is necessary. Assume that some tests in your test suites will become invalid due to software changes. Get rid of these test assets when they have been identified. This will significantly reduce your load. Several automated testing tools simplify this task, including methods for packaging outdated or invalid tests .
  • Handle your test assets like other software applications: Software applications require maintenance. This also holds for the software testing suite. Whether recorded or coded, test cases and the test scripts that go with them should be kept up to date. The assets in your automated test suites also need various types of maintenance, such as corrective, preventive, or adaptive, just as the software does.
    Identify your test plans for corrective maintenance (such as fixing syntax problems in your scripts), preventive maintenance (such as writing generic test scripts wherever feasible), and adaptive maintenance as you update your automated test suites. This may be included in your test plan.
  • Centralized your test assets: Locate your test assets in a repository that the development team can access to make it easier to maintain your automated test suites. You can use different test management tools to organize your test assets (test cases, test scripts, and test suites) in a single repository.
  • Improve testability with collaboration: To improve the testability of your automated test suites, you can use them to communicate test decisions to the developers. For continuous perfective maintenance of your test suites, handle them like assets that belong to the development team rather than just the testing team.

Wrap up!

This brings us to the end of this test suite tutorial. Test suites are simply collections of test cases. Organizing your test cases into suites makes it easier to test efficiently and effectively. Creating well-structured test suites is crucial to run successful test cases. It also ensures more excellent test coverage and gives a clear plan for QA teams to follow.

Frequently asked questions

  • General ...
What is test suite in agile?
A test suite is a container that includes a set of tests that testers can use to execute and report the status of tests. The status can be active, in progress, or completed. You can add test cases to multiple test suites.
What is test suite and test plan?
Test suites consist of several test cases, while a test plan is a document describing the scope, approach, assets, and schedule of test activities for a system under test.
What is a test suite in software testing?
In software testing, a test suite typically includes various test cases designed to exercise multiple aspects of the software program. For example, a test suite might consist of unit, integration, and functional tests, among others.
What is test suite in TestNG?
In TestNG, a test suite is defined using the suiteXmlFile attribute of the <suite> element in the TestNG configuration file. This attribute specifies the name and location of the XML file that defines the test suite, which includes a list of the test cases that are part of the suite. When TestNG is run, it will execute all of the test cases that are included in the specified test suite.
What is an automated test suite?
An automated test suite is a collection of test cases typically created using specialized software tools that allow them to be executed automatically, without the need for manual intervention. Automated test suites are often used in regression testing to ensure that software continues to function properly after changes or updates are made to it.
How to create a test suite in eclipse?
To create a test suite in Eclipse, follow these steps: First, create a new Java class for the test suite. Then, import the required testing frameworks such as JUnit or TestNG. Next, add test cases to the test suite class using annotations or by manually writing test methods. Finally, run the test suite using the test runner provided by the testing framework to execute all the test cases within the suite. This allows for organized and systematic testing of your code in Eclipse.
What is an example of a test suite?
A test suite is a collection of test cases designed to verify the functionality and performance of a software application. It includes various scenarios and input combinations that assess different aspects of the system, ensuring its reliability. For instance, a test suite for an e-commerce website may encompass tests for user registration, product search, and checkout process, among others.
What is the test suite in selenium?
A test suite in Selenium is a collection of test cases grouped together for efficient execution and management. It enables software testers to organize and run multiple tests simultaneously, ensuring comprehensive coverage and efficient validation of web applications. By utilizing Selenium's test suite functionality, testers can streamline their testing efforts and achieve robust software quality assurance.
What are the types of test suite?
Test suites can be classified into several types based on their purpose and scope. The most common types include unit test suites, which verify individual components or functions; integration test suites, which test the interaction between multiple components; system test suites, which evaluate the entire system's functionality; and acceptance test suites, which ensure that the system meets the specified requirements. Each type serves a unique role in ensuring software quality and facilitating comprehensive testing.

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