Alpha software is computer software in the early testing phase. It has basic functions enough to be used, but it is often buggy and lacks features that will be integrated into the final version. Alpha software is often used for internal testing.
Internal (Alpha) testing - The stage of testing the program as a whole by testers, usually not developers of the software product, but, as a rule, within the organization or the community developing the product. Also, it can be the stage of adding new functionality, whereby programs can only be used to familiarize themselves with future opportunities.
Most often, alpha testing is carried out at an early stage of software development, but in some cases, it can be used for a finished product as an internal acceptance test. Sometimes alpha testing is performed under a debugger or using an integrated development environment that helps to quickly identify the errors found. The detected bugs can be reported to testers for additional investigation in an environment similar to the one in which the program will be used.
Typically, alpha testing ends with freezing properties and goes into beta testing.
Beta testing - The stage of active public testing and debugging of the program that passed the alpha testing (if any). Programs of this level can be used by other developers of software for compatibility testing. Nevertheless, the programs of this stage can still contain a large number of errors.
Sometimes beta testing is performed in order to get feedback about the product from its future users.
Often for free and open source software, the alpha testing phase is characterized by the functional content of the code, and beta testing is the error correction stage. At the same time, as a rule, at each stage of development, intermediate results of work are available to end users.