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Username is not case sensitive but using different case did not work

 
Amit Ghorpade
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Today I witnessed this weird behavior for a well known application from a more well known company. It turned out that I had all the access and my account was setup perfect. The troubleshooting team saw no issues whatsoever. That said I was not able to see anything after logging in. No menus, no links,etc. The support team kept on replying that my account is fine and I maybe using wrong URL (a non production server) to login,etc. Then there was a 2 hour long trouble shooting session where my login attempts were actively monitored, sessions killed and stuff like that.
Finally the senior analyst jumped in. He suggested I use the username in all CAPS. I argued saying its logging me in and says its not case sensitive. But he wanted me to try that because nothing else was left
to try. I tried and it worked wonders.
I am still trying to figure it out
 
Pat Farrell
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Your subject line, like the cake, is a lie.

Clearly something in the system thought that the username was case sensitive. Sounds like a design/implementation flaw on their side.
 
Bear Bibeault
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Yup, sounds like something in the code is doing a non-case-sensitive comparison somewhere. Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy.
 
Amit Ghorpade
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Pat Farrell wrote:Your subject line, like the cake, is a lie.

Edited to make the subject line more meaningful, this is my best shot.

Funny thing about this application is that it says user name is not case sensitive. It allows any case for the username but does not work when it is not all CAPS, and this is the landing page after login.
I mean how did the testing miss the landing page, what can a user do if he only sees the logout button and nothing else?
This is an elephant size bug for me, okay, at least a baby elephant.
 
Jayesh A Lalwani
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Oh you don't know what can be missed in testing I am pretty sure all their usernames are test01, test02, test03
 
Pat Farrell
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Jayesh A Lalwani wrote:Oh you don't know what can be missed in testing I am pretty sure all their usernames are test01, test02, test03


Then I'd fire the QA team lead.
Not kidding.
 
Amit Ghorpade
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Jayesh A Lalwani wrote:I am pretty sure all their usernames are test01, test02, test03

Even worse 123456, 000000,etc. This is a place where case would not make any difference
 
Matthew Brown
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I hit a related (though less obvious) problem with an application last year. Everything worked fine if people logged in with their username (any case :-)). What I (and everybody who tested it) didn't predict is that some people would log in as username@domain. Because I never do, and nobody I know ever does. Why would you? What I also didn't realise was that if you did try and log in like that, you can, because of the way I was authenticating against Active Directory. But then it blew up somewhere else when it tried to carry out a lookup on the "username" that had been entered. Easily fixed, once you know about it.
 
Paul Clapham
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Matthew Brown wrote:What I (and everybody who tested it) didn't predict is that some people would log in as username@domain. Because I never do, and nobody I know ever does. Why would you?


Yeah, I've been caught in the past by testing things the normal way, the way that any reasonable person (such as me) would do it, only to find that people were doing those things in peculiar ways.
 
Matthew Brown
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Paul Clapham wrote:Yeah, I've been caught in the past by testing things the normal way, the way that any reasonable person (such as me) would do it, only to find that people were doing those things in peculiar ways.


That's a particular problem when you're testing your own work. Because you know so well how it's supposed to be used that you miss things that even a reasonable person (such as me ) would do if they were unfamiliar.

There's no real substitute for giving it to real users.
 
Jayesh A Lalwani
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This is why it's easier to develop apps that are dog-food able, which means that the developers are able to use the app themselves. They are the end users.

Unfortunately most people work in domains that are non dog foodable
 
Amit Ghorpade
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Another funny thing about this app is that it pulls user information from the active directory and populates fields on a form.
There is a field that is populated correctly but while saving the form, it shows an error. Guess what, it is not a user friendly error, its the actual error thrown by the code.
So you cannot click "Save", instead you need to click "Save and exit". Same error gets displayed but the form gets saved.
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
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