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Automated generation of oracled test cases with regular expressions and combinatorial techniques

12th June 2020

Our colleagues Macario Polo and Ignacio García together with Oscar Pedreira and Ángeles S. Places have published the article "Automated generation of oracled test cases with regular expressions and combinatorial techniques" in Journal of Software: Evolution and Process .


One of the main challenges of software test research is the automated addition of oracles to the generated test cases: While automated generation of sequences of operations (which is one of the essential components of test cases) is in practice A solved problem, the automated addition of the oracle (another must-have) remains a major problem and a matter of open investigation.

This article proposes an approach to obtaining executable test sets made up of complete test cases (i.e. including the oracle). The core of the method is based on annotated regular expressions. The test generation process, which is supported by a tool, follows three steps:

1) Creation of annotated regular expressions, in which each regular expression describes a set of sequences of operations that will be executed against the system under test.

2) Expansion of regular expressions to obtain sequences of operations, which do not yet have parameter values.

3) Generation of test cases executable with the oracle. In this third step, each test case is generated with the appropriate oracle, depending on the conditions specified in the regular expression.

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