TTCN-3, Why we use it?

The amount of software and the dependency of the society on this software is still increasing rapidly. Software provides the core functionality of most electronics products. These so-called “software-intensive systems” have a large penetration into daily life and this penetration is expected to grow even more in the coming years. In addition to the growth in size and complexity, these software-intensive systems need to be of ever-increasing quality and need to be developed in ever-shorter time frames. To remain competitive in the development of such systems, industry needs to increase productivity and quality by means of re-use and better testing practices.

TTCN-3 Open architecture

TTCN-3 Open architecture

Testing is an important step in the development of a software-intensive system, as it checks the compliance of a system to (end) user requirements. In order to fulfil market demands for better and faster system development, also testing these systems should be done in a more effective and efficient way. By more effective testing, a better indication is provided of product quality, and by more efficient testing this indication is provided faster.

TTCN-3 is the only international standardized test language for specification and implementation of complex test systems and solutions. It is standardized by ETSI and ITU-T and being used to standardize test solutions for different kind of technologies.

Quality is the customer guarantee for product reliability, and the vendor-shield against high outlay for product return and redesign. To ensure high quality products and services, testing must be baked in at the early stages of the product/ service development cycle. Early testing ensures optimized quality in all engineering stages.

No less than a third of the overall development budget is spent on testing to ensure product/service quality. But the face of testing is changing: in the past, testing was a manual operation whereas nowadays companies are increasingly turning to systematic automated test methods.

One key requirement in testing is to have full transparency within the test process especially regarding time lines and costs. With more products having short dynamic lifecycles, time lines have become a critical factor in testing. Test sessions have to be created fast and must be easily modified.

TTCN-3 is the Answer

In the past ten years the abstract test specification language TTCN-3 – Testing and Test Control Notion 3rd Generation – has been developed and standardized by ETSI and ITU-T. TTCN-3 unites the power and capability of a test specification and implementation language under continuous enhancement with all the advantages a global standard can offer. TTCN3 combines advantages of increased productivity and power together with a sufficient level of formalism and a component model that gives the possibility to obtain reuse in testing.

The special advantage of the generic testing language TTCN-3 is that it is all purpose and can be put to such a huge range of uses including:

  • Development of technology-independent test suites
  • Specification in various presentation formats – graphics, text-based, tables
  • Fast development of new test suites through a sophisticated software engineering concept
  • Easy adaptation of existing test suites
  • Support for automated and distributed testing

Development of technology-independent test suites Specification in various presentation formats – graphics, text-based, tables Fast development of new test suites through a sophisticated software engineering concept Easy adaptation of existing test suites Support for automated and distributed testing. TTCN-3 is the warranty for high investment security. Manual testing and labor-intensive time-consuming migration are things of the past.