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Severity and Priority of Defects.

Severity and Priority of Defects.

There are two important things related to defects of software testing :
  • Severity
  • Priority


Severity is the extent to which the defect can affect the software or application. Severity defines the impact of defect on the system or software. Example: When user clicks on a remote link and the page of application crashes. Being it the remote link on the application the Priority of the defect will be low however the severity will be high.

Severity is of following types:

Critical: The defects or bugs that can result in termination of the complete software or one or more components of software are categorised as of Critical Severity the failed function is unusable and there are no alternative methods to do that work.

Major: The defects or bugs that results in stoppage of complete system or one or more module of software. The failed function is unusable but there are alternative ways to do that work.

Moderate: The defect or bug doesn’t stop or terminate any functionality but caus causes the software to produce incorrect or inconsistent output.

Minor: The defects that causes no termination or stoppage of the system. The desired outputs can be obtained by another available function.

Cosmetic: Cosmetic defect is related to the changes related to look and feel of the application.


Priority defines the sequence in which the defect should be resolved by the developing team. The priority of the defects is set by tester to developer having the time frame to fix the bug. The priority of the defect is set on the basis of customer requirement.

Priority can be of the following types:

Low: The priority of the defect is set as low when the defect is an irritant and can be fixed later after more serious defects.

Medium: The priority of defect is set as medium when the defect can be fixed in normal course of development.

High: The priority of defect is set as high when the defect is affecting the software or product severely. The system is unusable without the defect is fixed by dev team.

Interview Question related to Severity and Priority:

High Priority and High Severity: Defect which occurs on basic functionality of the software and is not allowing the user to use the system or software.(Example: a website having details or students, when the user saves a record it doesn’t allows the user to save the new record.)

High Priority and Low Severity: The spelling errors on the cover page or main page of a website or application.

High Severity and Low Priority: Defect which occurs on the functionality of the software which doesn’t have any work around and is not allowing user to use the system on click of a remote link.

Low Priority and Low Severity: Any cosmetic defect on a paragraph or in report not on cover page or heading.