Reasons You Shouldn't Reproduce Issues in Remote Environments of Software Testing
While developing software, the biggest time-waster that developers face is Bugs. Software Development is an unavoidable part of. As per the study done by Stripe, more than 17 hours in a week developers spend on maintenance issues like refactoring and debugging, with about a quarter of that time spent fixing the bad code. This has further led to lost productivity of nearly $300 billion every year.
For this reason, it is very important to ensure that the time of developers is being utilized properly. Also, it’s critical to have access to the right tool that can help optimize the defect resolution procedure.
This wasting of time happens in one particular scenario: The bug is discovered in production. And developers find that they can’t diagnose the problem as they don’t have the right information in their log files.
Development teams have to go through an iterative cycle of pushing new builds with the new log lines. Eventually, teams opt to deploy the current production build to a staging environment or remote test with hopes of being able to more easily reproduce the problem. Sometimes it might work, while the environment is too different to adequately reproduce the problem, and it goes unsolved.
Reasons for not reproducing issues in a remote environment
Here are some of the reasons why you shouldn’t reproduce problems in the remote environments of software testing –
- Configuration Drift: While keeping test and development environments perfectly aligned with the same configuration as production, configuration drift happens almost always. It is often unavoidable. The drift can be caused by differences in memory, CPU configuration, manual changes made by testers or developers, and package update to a server.
- Inefficient and Time-Consuming: Most of the time, teams need to stop their work and wait for a new environment to be spun up; context switching happens, resulting in less production.
- Data Constraints: Sometimes, the bugs go unsolved as you can’t get the required information while the application is running in production. It is important to have proper tools for debugging applications on demand without requiring any code changes or application’s redeployments.
- The Right Tools for the Job: Having the right tools always tends to make life a bit easier. While attempting to debug a production problem, the standard toolset that comes to mind for most organizations are logging, APM, and exception management tools. Production debugging tools allow developers to get detailed levels of information that these tools don’t capture.
While looking at software development organizations, much more money and time are spent reproducing issues in remote environments. Present tools used for monitoring running applications and debugging provide value but always don’t give any relevant information the developers need to point out the bug and then resolve them. Of course, while creation of defect reproduction environments can sometimes be an unavoidable necessity of fixing bugs. The constraints and costs associated with the remote environment can often be limited by giving developer teams the right tools in their tool belt.
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