Development of an HIL test system for software testing
Infotiv has designed, developed and deployed a Hardware-in-the-Loop (HIL) test system intended for the automated testing of software in an embedded system, for a customer who develops and manufactures industrial products. The delivery also included the design of automated test cases where previous test cases were manual, as well as integrating the automated tests into a flow for Continuous Integration.
The customer ordered the system with the aim of being able to test software deployment earlier in development projects, but also to be able to perform regression tests effectively. Important requirements from the customer were that the test cases and results would be traceable according to a software version, and that the solution would be scalable to be able to handle additional control units or variants.
Infotiv's solution is based on the National Instruments’ PXI platform and includes modules for real-time execution, FPGA, relay cards, analogue I/O, digital I/O and CANopen. To check and configure the system, the Veristand software, by National Instruments, is used. In addition, the existing test executive (built in LabVIEW) was modified for integration with VeriStand.
In the Continuous Integration flow, Jenkins was used to build the software to be tested. Infotiv's solution integrated the test system into the flow through connections between Jenkins, the test executive and Veristand. The flow could therefore be expanded to automatically start test suites and report results after changes were made to the software to be tested. New software was built and tested every night in order to report results to the development team the following morning.
The system, together with around 350 automated test cases, has significantly reduced the time and effort required to test software deployments. The software quality has also been improved as problems have been identified earlier in the development process. The architecture of the test system is designed to be adapted to future products and variants.
As the customer was very pleased with Infotiv’s delivery, another test system has been ordered. Consultancy services relating to further development and testing were also purchased in connection with the two deliveries.