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Open source is just another inexpensive QA operations solution. In the present scenario of the IT industry, open-source testing tools are the driving force of the modern innovation and are the most mature solutions available for testing challenges as technical support, limited protocol support, and script maintenance. Any IT organization curious about QA implementation won't neglect this breed of powerful tools. Open source tools are built on open standards, brings strong community support, and facilitates customization to match your needs extensively.

Having the right testing tools is one of the defining factors for successful QA. However, a big challenge is to decide what to choose between licensed and open source testing tools as both have their pros and cons. For example, you may start with open source testing tools but later face hurdles in scaling your tests. After you realize that the open-source didn’t work for you, a licensed testing tool may seem the right option but due to the high costs, achieving ROI could be difficult.

The comparison between licensed tools with open source tools is a good starting point to discuss the topic which gives general details about the pros and cons of the tools:

LicensedOpen source

- Latest technology available

- High-security standards

- High reliability

- Customer support

- Free to use

- Highly customizable

- Wider compatibility


- High costs can be a concern

- Restrictions on the customization or no customization allowed

- Skilled resources required

- Lack of tool support

- Slower technical improvements

- Maintenance costs

Paybacks of Open Source Tools 

The advancement in the testing phenomenon has led to raising end-to-end pricing for testing tools. This scenario is encouraging IT organizations to embrace open source testing tools, which is turning out to be cost-effective in terms of ownership perspective and provide access to advanced functionality. Open source tools are now basic building blocks of the IT spectrum; contributing as an integral part of the software testing domain to lessen the complexity and enhance the productivity of the testing process. In contrast, below are the few benefits which matter most to the IT organizations.

  • Lower - Total Cost of Ownership
  • Business approach:
    • Bring down dependencies on given products/tools
    • Supports faster time-to-market
  • IT strategy:
    • Resilience
    • User-friendly
    • Ease of procurement
    • Flexibility to customize
  • Open-source community:
    • Plan and accord to contribute to the community, endorse open and extensive architectural design of the software.

Considerations of Open Source Testing Tools

Given all the information about the tools, you need to consider the one that suits your application, development process, QA team expertise, and budget. The choice heavily depends on your requirements. Say, you have enough time and skilled resources, you can build a custom framework on top of an open-source tool within a year. However, if you need speed and reliability with open source, you can use cloud infrastructure and focus more on writing tests.

    • Most of the open-source testing tools are developed are objective-oriented, users will have access to the source code to customize it and use it as per their requirement.

    • Abrupt errors/bugs can affect the project progress, timely support provided by the service provider for the tool could minimize such consequences. However, organizations need to understand the support is limited to closed communities, forums and groups of specific tools.

    • It's imperative to underline the spending for administration and maintenance prior to the project's initiation; because the cost varies upon the project complexity and size. Most of the organizations ignore these factors while setting the project budget and end up spending more.

    • Most of the open-source tools come up with non-intuitive UI, thus specialized training for the tool is rare. But the training materials are made available in communities, groups, and forums. With some effort, organizations can amass the needed information to understand tool functionality.

  • Essentially comprehending the licensing mechanism of different modes such as GPL, LGPL is vital, the process helps to use open source tools appropriately and keeps you away from tiff situations.

Pyramid Consulting offers an in-depth assessment of your current processes, tools, team, risks, and methodology. Our qualified and seasoned professionals can recommend the best steps required to eliminate performance bottlenecks. We will create an automation test strategy, and a plan for the allocation of tools and resources to achieve your organizational goals. Pyramid Consulting’s extensive experience in implementing customized QA solutions is your assurance of success. Contact us to know how we can get you the best results with QA.

Carl Johanson

About the author

Carl Johanson

Practice Director, QA & Testing

Carl has been creating custom, forward-focused and effective QA solutions for Pyramid Consulting since 2012. Implementing the latest tech and thought leadership delights Carl just as it does clients. In his personal life, Carl focuses on doing things right and doing the right things—an important distinction—as efficiently as possible. If you need Carl urgently, check out your local drumming scene or the closest beach, otherwise you can find him at home with his beautiful and ever-growing family.

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