Windows 10 from a Tester’s Point of View

Pavel Novik

The Windows operating system recently upgraded to version 10 – right after the eighth one. You may wonder, what happened to Windows 9? Actually, nothing. According to Windows marketing boss Tony Prophet, “It came and it went.” Microsoft wants its users to understand that Windows 10 is not just the next version but a huge step forward.

With the Windows 10 evolution, testing must be divided into two types:

  1. Testing on different platforms (PC, tablet, mobile phone).
  2. Cross-browser testing of Web applications.

Windows 10 for PCs
With the introduction of Windows 10 comes an increase in the number of tests required. The simplest ones will check whether the following requirements are fulfilled:

  • Start menu should contain the list of frequently used applications and documents;
  • It should be possible to work with multiple desktops (Windows 10 will have virtual desktops);
  • Electronic keyboard can be opened from the taskbar (important when testing the fields);
  • System and applications notifications should synchronize with other Windows 10 devices and be arranged according to applications;
  • The search bar, tasks view buttons and notifications center should be added to the taskbar. The search should be carried out not only on a PC, but also on the Internet;
  • The new search bar should have an inbuilt Cortana voice assistant. It can search for and open files or applications, send messages, etc. This feature is currently available only in the U.S.;
  • The improved Snap feature should allow users to open up to four applications simultaneously and suggest what other applications are running and how they can be placed;
  • Continuum mode should enable users to work simultaneously with the touch interface and the traditional hybrid devices, i.e. to connect a monitor, mouse and keyboard to the phone;
  • Sign in service, Windows Hello, should prevent users from having to enter a password on sites and applications that support it, as it uses biometric data to sign in. Along with Windows Hello, Microsoft is launching a system called Microsoft Passport that is designed to pass authentication to enterprise applications and online content using personal devices instead of the password;
  • The possibility to insert text from the clipboard using Ctrl + V key combination should be added to the command line;
  • Microsoft reduced the number of automatically run services. Thirteen services have been completely removed. There should also be an option of launching on demand, which starts services only after a certain event, such as connecting a new device.

Windows 10 for Mobile Devices
Windows 10 Mobile is currently available for a limited number of models. New peculiarities worth mentioning include:

  • The icons on the start screen now can be moved and resized;
  • It is possible to add your own background image for the screen itself and for each icon separately. Icons are translucent and look great. Displaying should be tested for the desktop applications;
  • The notification bar gained many useful buttons;
  • Settings have undergone a complete redesign. They are as close to Windows 10 on the PC as possible and all settings are grouped;
  • New features have been added to the calculator, photo apps, time, file manager and voice recorder.

As it can be seen, Microsoft is struggling to accommodate all devices under the umbrella of Windows 10. However, users are provided with universal applications and a new level of synchronization. Although the full compatibility is yet to be achieved, Windows 10 is a smart and necessary step.

Pavel Novik is a QA manager at A1QA, an independent software testing company.

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