Should testing be done only after the build and execution phases are complete?
In traditional testing methodology testing is always done after the build and execution phases.
But that's a wrong way of thinking because the earlier we catch a defect, the more cost effective it is. For instance, fixing a defect in maintenance is ten times more costly than fixing it during execution.
In the requirement phase we can verify if the requirements are met according to the customer needs. During design we can check whether the design document covers all the requirements. In this stage we can also generate rough functional data. We can also review the design document from the architecture and the correctness perspectives. In the build and execution phase we can execute unit test cases and generate structural and functional data. And finally comes the testing phase done in the traditional way. i.e., run the system test cases and see if the system works according to the requirements. During installation we need to see if the system is compatible with the software. Finally, during the maintenance phase when any fixes are made we can retest the fixes and follow the regression testing.
Therefore, Testing should occur in conjunction with each phase of the software development.