How to Perform Game Testing for Compatibility With Antivirus Products?

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Nowadays, information technology is developed and improved so fast. There are a lot of antivirus products and companion programs (with tens and even hundreds of configuration variations and other security options).

In the modern world, there is no perfect thing. So, even the most powerful and popular antivirus products can, for example, block user personal files. It may happen even though the person is completely sure in file safety.

These situations can scale back the number of software users. In order to prevent similar situations after product release, we need testers.

game bug

game bug

Antivirus vs Video Games

Some antivirus products can easily block the performance of legally installed games because of some viruses or their potential existence in this game. For example, if a programmer doesn’t control the security of PC, a virus can get to some game build that will be delivered to end-users.

Naturally, there is not a big chance that such a situation may happen. Nevertheless, something similar can do much harm to companies’ business reputation.

There are instances where the antivirus system simply blocks a game installation or restricts access to the Internet.

Such problems on a client-side lead to various undesirable results: from the failure in normal playthrough to the blocking or deleting the game files on the user PC.

To prevent these situations, QA engineers execute specialized tests that are thought out to the last detail: from checking the functionality on the game mechanics performance to the interaction between game software and popular antiviruses.

On the other hand, programmers should solve the system problem with the antivirus program or contact the manufacturer of the antivirus for seeking a joint solution.

There is no such a programmer in the world who wants to ruin the first impression of his/her product because of technical problems with the antivirus.

On average, any small or big game has 3-5 patches that can inadvertently cause system malfunction. In other words, tester conducts tests based on original files, but new versions will overwrite them. And in the end there will be a defect.

What Antiviruses Can We Use for Game Testing?

According to the TopTenReveiws research, the top 5 ultimate manufacturers of the antivirus software are the following:

  1. ANG;
  2. BitDefender;
  3. Kaspersky;
  4. AVG;
  5. F-Secure.

Note! Don’t try to cover all the possible antiviruses with tests. This process won’t bring a necessary benefit relative to the time you could spend executing tests.

It would be better to pay attention to the top 10 programs in your area and completely focus on their functionality.

Also, don’t forget about China. If you work on a Chinese game, remember that there is a complicated interaction between game software and antivirus components. Most of them are unknown even for the most experienced testers.

Main Steps Before Testing the Compatibility With Antivirus Products

  • See what functionality of the game under test you should check for the compatibility with antivirus components first of all;
  • Make a list of tested antiviruses;
  • Also, list all the versions of antivirus under test;
  • Sort out the operating platforms for testing;
  • Test the technical compatibility of antivirus with a particular operating system;
  • Analyze the whole set of antiviruses and set the parameters of the antivirus configurations under the test;
  • Set a time limit for the start and conclusion of the testing process.

If a QA specialist has to conduct exhaustive testing, then he/she can use the following strategy:

  1. Mostly specialists test last three versions of any antivirus;
  2. Work on different OS versions and its categories, since you can find bugs in the most unexpected configurations and settings;
  3. Experiment with antivirus settings. Everything should be thoroughly tested and bugs should be recorded.

Considering all these settings and tests described above, we can say that on average during the game testing 2500-4000 various configurations are processed. And of course, all these configurations should be tested thoroughly.

Obviously, this is a large number. But if you think everything over correctly and plan the test deployment effectively, you can perform testing without affecting other validations.

Conclusion

Any head of the game testing company should provide time for his/her testers to study new antiviruses and peculiarities of their performance. QA specialist has to be familiar with all new things in this sphere and easily customize the configuration of game software according to technical peculiarities of the antivirus.

Also, the test team should have a PC with a new clear OS in order to provide the correctness of test results.

If one constantly uses this strategy, it is possible to shorten the test iteration up to 45-50% and make the testing process more attractive for a client.

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