Xest: An Automated Framework for Regression Testing of Embedded Software
Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Proceedings of the 2010 Workshop on Embedded Systems Education (WESE '10)
As embedded systems permeate an ever-widening circle of safety- and mission-critical applications, robust testing of embedded software remains of paramount importance. Yet narrow I/O channels, scarce memory and processor resources, real-time and interrupt-driven behavior, and low-level source languages make state-of-the-art validation techniques much more difficult in an embedded context. For students, for whom testing is often already a secondary concern, the challenges in methodical testing of embedded systems can appear insurmountable. We present the Xinu External Suite Tester (XEST) framework, a tool for automated, parallelized regression testing of embedded software kernels running directly on real embedded hardware. We discuss the requirements for such a system, and evaluate its power as both a quality control mechanism in an actively developing system and as an assessment tool for students in conjunction with the Embedded Xinu experimental laboratory.