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Test Systems Overview

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You are here: Testing > Testing Services >Test Systems Overview

The Open Group's family of test suites is essential for proper development and maintenance of standards-based products, ensuring conformance of products to industry-standard APIs, application portability and interoperability. This leaflet describes currently available products, supporting services and The Open Group's on-going development program.


  • The Open Group provides the industry's most complete set of API conformance test suites, widely respected and regularly used by major IT suppliers.
  • For buyers: adequate conformance testing leads to reduced integration costs and protection of investments in applications, software and people.
  • For software developers: conformance testing of platforms and middleware greatly reduces the cost of developing and maintaining multi-platform application software.
  • For suppliers: In-depth testing increases customer satisfaction and keeps development and support costs in check. API conformance is highly measurable and suppliers who claim it must be able to substantiate that claim. Many major IT procurements now require guarantees of conformance such as the The Open Group brand and this is critically dependent on adequate testing. It is essential to be ready for this by incorporating appropriate testing regimes into the product release cycle at the earliest possible stage.


  • Conformance testing as part of routine development enables product vendors to respond to key market opportunities where conformance certification is a mandatory requirement.
  • The Open Group test suites are recognised for The Open Brand and by the European Conformance Testing Services (CTS) program. They are also designed to meet NIST acceptance criteria for use in US procurements.
  • Key X/Open , POSIX, ISO and NIST specifications are covered by the same test suites.
  • In-depth testing by test suites identifies defects at the earliest possible point in the development cycle, saving cost in development and quality assurance and minimising time-to-market.
  • The Open Group's common reporting and management framework - the Test Environment Toolkit (TET) - provides for consistency and extensibility.
  • Test suites are very costly in time and effort to produce and to maintain. The Open Group's shared development approach eliminates duplication of effort, ensures that these costs remain manageable and allows scarce resources to be better focused on delivering value to the end customer.

How The Open Group delivers

  • The Open Group develops a growing family test suites and offers an e-mail based support and maintenance service with regular updates.
  • The Open Group test suites are developed in strict alignment with XPG specifications. This alignment is continuously maintained and reinforced.
  • An open development process allows participation in the critical aspects of test suite development through its "Test Development Groups" (TDGs), drawing upon existing experience and providing early access to new test suites.
  • Vendors may license the test suites for in-house use. (Licensees may also apply for recognised test laboratory status in connection with the brand.)
  • The Open Group-recognised Test Centres offer added-value services such as enhanced support to licensees of the suites and a testing service for non-licensees.
  • A continuous requirements gathering exercise, based on input from the The Open Group membership, is designed to ensure on-going expansion of the test suite family in line with specification availability and related industry requirements.

Why The Open Group?

  • The Open Group is an independent, international and vendor-neutral consortium of buyers and suppliers of information technology, dedicated to making open systems a practical reality.
  • The key elements of The Open Group's offering comprise user-driven requirements gathering, open specification development, test suite development and a product brand program.
  • Test suites are developed and maintained in close correlation with the relevant specifications. As The Open Group maintains many of the key industry-wide specifications it is uniquely positioned to offer this service.
  • As each test suite is in constant use by leading suppliers to prepare their products for brand registration, The Open Group receives a great deal of feedback that contributes to on-going enhancements.
  • The Open Group is one of the few organisations in a position to champion the cause of open systems testing. The Open Group has no other agenda than to make open systems work.

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