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A Method Using Eeproms To Broaden Automated Test Coverage

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000014401D
Original Publication Date: 2000-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-19
Document File: 2 page(s) / 39K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

A method is disclosed that uses electrically erasable programmable read-only memories (eeproms) to broaden automated test coverage. Automated testing has long been used to increase the efficiency of testing hardware. Today, automated testing is being employed in the testing of software. For example, power can be automatically applied and removed repeatedly. This will cause a system to go through its boot sequence repeatedly and the results can be recorded for future analysis. Additionally, electronic signals can be applied automatically and results noted. System software tests may require changes in hardware configuration to test all software paths. But, making configuration changes is frequently a labor intensive task usually resulting in less paths and configurations being tested. What is needed is an automatic method for changing hardware status and configuration and providing simulated conditions and artificial stimuli. Many computer systems contain eeproms that contain data including such information as part number, serial number, version levels, mappings, etc. and the software being tested obviously has access to these eeproms.

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A Method Using Eeproms To Broaden Automated Test Coverage

A method is disclosed that uses electrically erasable programmable read-only
memories (eeproms) to broaden automated test coverage.

Automated testing has long been used to increase the efficiency of testing
hardware. Today, automated testing is being employed in the testing of
software. For example, power can be automatically applied and removed
repeatedly. This will cause a system to go through its boot sequence
repeatedly and the results can be recorded for future analysis.
Additionally, electronic signals can be applied automatically and results
noted.

System software tests may require changes in hardware configuration to test
all software paths. But, making configuration changes is frequently a labor
intensive task usually resulting in less paths and configurations being
tested. What is needed is an automatic method for changing hardware status
and configuration and providing simulated conditions and artificial stimuli.

Many computer systems contain eeproms that contain data including such
information as part number, serial number, version levels, mappings, etc. and
the software being tested obviously has access to these eeproms.

During the course of testing, an automated tester can be programmed to rewrite
the eeprom data for the purpose of testing more paths in the software. The
data for the rewrites can be stored in disk files which are referenced by
commands in an automated test script or the data for the rewrites could be
stored in an eeprom module located in the tester hardware. The eeprom data
can be utilized in the following two ways:

1. Standard information such as version levels, mappings, etc. c...