I have been asked this question in an interview. Please share your opinion.

The interviewer asked me "what's difference between system test and system integration test". I gave the below answer:

System Test – The process of testing an integrated system to verify that it meets specified requirements.

System Integration Test – Testing the integration of systems and packages; testing interfaces to external organizations (e.g. Electronic Data Interchange, Internet).

Then he asked me "what's the difference between automated system test and automated system integration test?"


Hopefully your interviewer understood that there are no universal definitions for those terms.

Here is one interpretation. A system test exercises an entire system, focusing on common workflows rather than edge conditions. Sometimes people refer to individual parts of a system test as an end-to-end test. An integration test exercises interactions between specific components (possibly including external systems that you do not control).

System tests are for testing the most important parts of an entire system. Integration tests are for testing the developers' assumptions about how components interact.

I left out the word "automated" out of that answer because it doesn't change the distinction.

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