Database Testing: A Detailed Guide

The complexity and integrity of the structure of software applications are increasing with advancing technology. Apart from high functionality and smooth user interaction, aesthetics and presentation of applications are also becoming essential. 

With the increasing sophistication of the front end, the back-end functionality also becomes diabolical. 

The database constitutes the fundamental framework of a software application.

Whether an application is web-based, mobile or desktop supported, client-server or developed for an individual business, a database is necessary everywhere at the back-end infrastructure.

Similarly, regardless of the industry,the application is serving (healthcare, defence, finance, aerospace), the credibility for behind-the-scene actions goes to the application database. 

Therefore, it has become incredibly important to understand database testing to validate an application’s databases accurately. Only with proper validation you can ensure secured and quality databases. 

What is Database Testing?

Database testing in the application engineering world is popularly known as back-end testing or data testing. It significantly varies from the user interface component since it is not concerned with the visual representation of the system. 

The primary goal of database testing is to evaluate that all the internal and back-end processes run correctly and can efficiently, securely, and accurately retrieve data for overall optimal performance. 

Implementing data compliance solutions during database testing is essential to maintain the security and privacy of sensitive data. 

Database testing involves testing the database’s schema, triggers, and tables. It puts the database under a microscope and can include executing complex queries for robust testing of its capabilities and responsiveness. 

It also involves evaluating Database Management Systems (DBMS), including the Oracle and SQL Server.

3 Fundamental Phases Of Database Testing

Database testing encompasses three fundamental phases to database testing. These include: 

  • Explaining the process and test requirements, 
  • Detecting errors, bugs, or defects, 
  • Performing validation. 

Let’s take a better view at each of these phases in detail:

Explaining the process and test requirements

  • The first phase explains what, why, and how the database needs to be tested. Software testing fundamentally involves entering data into forms or screens that, in some manner, interact with the database. 
  • Database testing also encompasses reviewing queries generated by the software or reading data straightaway from the database tables.

Also read : What Is Release Management And Its Role In Devops?

Detecting errors: 

  • This phase involves identifying any errors or concerns with the database design and structure.  
  • This can include errors with table relationships ( (i.e., foreign keys, primary keys), inaccurate data types(i.e., dates/times, contact numbers, DoB), or invalid values (i.e., non-numeric, special, and alphabetic characters within numeric data fields)

Performing validation:

  • This step ensures obtaining the expected results. This includes confirming that queries return accurate results and forms/screens reflect updates to the database structure.

Hire professional experts to smoothly integrate essential tools for database testing and test environment management. 

Principal Concepts in Database Testing

The two principal concepts of database testing include:

  • ACID Properties Validation
  • Data Integrity

Let’s understand each of these components with a more detailed explanation:

ACID Properties

The ACID is an acronym for Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, and Durability. Each transaction (group of tasks) in database testing must meet these principles.

  • Atomicity defines that every transaction needs to be treated as an atomic unit. In the technical domain, it indicates that every transaction must be successfully completed in full, or else it fails. Atomicity avoids messy, half-baked situations. For example, if an application database deals with money transfers, the entire payment fails if anything goes wrong in between, avoiding the monetary transfer getting stuck in between. 
  • Consistency requires that the database remains consistent after a group of actions is performed. No transaction should adversely impact any other data present in the database. 
  • Isolation restricts the chances of the streams crossing or intersecting each other. This avoids one piece of information getting mixed up with other data in the database. This is one of the major goals of data compliance solutions. 
  • Durability demands the database to be adequately durable and robust to hold onto all the latest transactions, even during a system failure. 

Having such strict requirements avoids any confusion on the end users’ side.  

Data Integrity

Data integrity involves verifying all the latest data is updated and consistency is maintained everywhere within the database. When the application is running, the end-user primarily utilizes the ‘CRUD’ operations facilitated by the database tool.

  • C: Create – ‘Create’ operation gets executed when the “user” saves any new transaction.
  • R: Retrieve – ‘Retrieve’ operation gets executed when the end-user ‘Search’ or ‘View’ any saved transaction
  • U: Update – The ‘Update’ operation gets executed when the user ‘Edit’ or ‘Modify’ an existing record,
  • D: Delete – ‘Delete’ operation is performed when a user ‘Remove’ any record from the system. 

Therefore, your database test cases in the test environment should include evaluating the data in all places it appears and ensuring that it is consistently the same.

Why Is Database Testing Important?

Database testing is vital due to the following reasons:

  • Some bugs and issues can only be detected only using database testing
  •  Certain usage conditions can only be evaluated through database testing 
  •  Database testing enhances stability and security 
  •  Database testing ensures proper consistency

What Are The Types Of Database Testing?

  • Structural database testing: Encompasses testing the stored procedures and triggers within a database using tables, columns, and database schemas 
  • Functional database testing: Involves verifying the health of a particular database from the end user’s perspective. Black-box and white-box testing are important components of functional database testing. 
  • Non-functional database testing: This database testing doesn’t involve any direct testing that interacts with user functions. It includes database performance, load and risk testing, and minimum system requirements analysis.


The database is extremely critical for any business. Therefore, hiring experienced professional services is the best solution to ensure it’s as error-free as possible. Connect with a professional service today to improve quality assurance with database testing.