Aer Lingus soars on open source move

16 Apr 2008

National airline Aer Lingus’ e-commerce division has deployed open source technology that will enable it to automate testing instead of running costly manual website testing.

Until now, website testing has been 100pc manual despite previous attempts to introduce automation tools.

The carrier has struck a deal with Irish technology firm Enovation to deploy an open source tool to test before it is made available to the public.

Leveraging its knowledge of open source solutions and testing practices, Enovation performed a detailed suitability analysis of the relevant automation tools on the market to determine the right choice for Aer Lingus.

It then worked with the Aer Lingus test and development teams to implement the solution, define an automation-friendly test suite and finally script these tests to the point where they were ready for execution in the Aer Lingus test environment.

“Where the commercial product failed, Selenium is proving to be successful – we anticipate that our test cycles will be greatly reduced and our test resources will be able to concentrate on advancing the functionality of the site,” said Ronan Fitzpatrick, head of e-commerce at Aer Lingus.

A complete regression test suite has been written using the chosen tool, Selenium, and a full rollout is currently being planned. The automated test suite should have a significant impact on the amount of manual testing that is performed on each release.

Aer Lingus plans to increase the volume of automated testing over the coming months, and eventually forecasts close to a 100pc automated regression cycle.

“The software industry is rapidly changing the way it looks at open source solutions and the return on investment they can offer,” said Dean Horrigan, head of Enovation’s testing services business.

“Through their forward-thinking approach, Aer Lingus had the acumen to realise this and worked closely with Enovation to implement a solution that provided what the more costly world of commercial tools could not.”

By John Kennedy