I have to test an application which does not have any specification or user manual. It has evolved over a period of time and there are no similar products in the market yet. I know exploratory testing is the way to go but where do I start?
Do the following:
- Get familiar with the application by using it.
- Try to get an overview and notice the different areas / components you recognize.
- Use the application from a user point of view.
- A lot of questions will come up in your mind. Write them down and clarify them later with business analysts and developers.
Aks the following questions:
- What type of users use our application?
- How many users we have?
- What technology is behind the application? (Programming Language, Services, Dependencies, Hardware etc.)
- Which browser, operating system and so on is supported?
- Which features are the most important ones?
Create a page in your intranet Wiki or something similar to notice each single information you get. On this way you can take a look there, if you forget something and you can give it to other people that are new in the compony.
I am sure that this list is not nearly complete. But I hope it will help you. Good luck!
My advice; Get hold of an actual USER.
Do whatever it takes, wine, dine, open doors, knock on doors etc. Just get hold of an user and use time with him/her.
Your goal should be to try to understand what problems the application is supposed to solve and how these problems are solved today.
Also in addition you might just accidentaly get a representative for your reference user group...