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Compatibility testing is to check whether the software is capable of running on a specific type of hardware system, operating systems, applications and network environment. It is a type of non functional testing. Compatibility of software to a system environment is its ability to perform in that environment.

The compatibility of the software is tested with various elements in the system environment listed below:

  1. Hardware
  2. Operating Systems
  3. Software
  4. Network
  5. Browser
  6. Devices
  7. Mobile
  8. Versions


Compatibility with hardware is to verify if the software is compatible with the other different hardware systems like RAM, processor, memory, external hardware accessories etc.

Operating Systems: 

The software system compatibility with the different operating systems like windows versions, iOS, etc is tested.


The compatibility of the software with other software applications like MS Office, VBA etc is tested.


The performance of a network is tested with the varying bandwidth, operating speed,and capacity. It also checks application in different networks with all the parameters mentioned.


The compatibility of the web based software application with the different browsers like Firefox, chrome, Internet explorer etc, is tested. It is specifically named as browser compatibility testing or cross browser testing. Several cross browser testing tools are commercialised, which can be used for testing the web based application compatibility with many browsers at the same time on same test environment.


It checks the compatibility of your software with different devices like USB port devices, printers and scanners.


Testing if the software is compatible with mobile platforms like android etc.

Versions of software: 

Testing the compatibility of software application with different versions of other software applications. There are two types of version checking:

  • Backward Testing: It is a procedure to verify the behaviour of new hardware and software with older versions of hardware and software.
  • Forward Testing: it is a procedure to verify the behaviour of developed hardware and software with newer versions of hardware and software.

Need for compatibility testing:

Any software developed must be high quality and compatible with the hardware, software, operating systems that might exist in production environment. This can be ensured through compatibility testing which detects for any error before the product is reached to any user. The quality product improves the reputation of the company and brings success to the company.

The compatibility related common defects are:

  1. Differences in user interface with respect to feel and look.
  2. Changes made with respect to alignment and its font sizes
  3. Existences and broken frame size.


  1. What is compatibility testing
  2. What is the use of compatibility testing?
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