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Selenium Tutorial For Beginners - Tutorial 5

Use Record/Playback Tools Instead of Writing Test Code

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Beginning Selenium users should make a choice between writing test scripts in a high level language (Java, Ruby, C#) and using a record/playback tool. Record/playback tools watch your use of a Web based application and writes a Selenium test script for you.

Selenium's tooling to make it easy to record and maintain test scripts is poor by design. The Selenium project leaders believe coding test scripts in a high level language is the most beneficial to a test developer: Tests are object oriented for easy maintenance. Unfortunately, many Selenium users do not have the coding skills to write tests.

The Selenium project is caught between the world of proprietary test tool vendors and the software developer community. The proprietary test tool vendors (HP, IBM, SmartBears, MicroTrend, CA, etc.) tell testers not to learn how to code. Don't worry, they promise, we will take care of the complexity and give you a simple record/playback tool. The software developer community urges austerity to build reusable, easily maintained, pattern-based test objects.

Just as IDEs include Wizards to create new applications and classes, testers have tools that make it easy to start with record/playback and move into coding. There is a tipping point in tester productivity between record/playback and coding.

The tipping point between scripting tests in a high level language and a record/playback tool

Ideally a Selenium record/playback tool offers these capabilities:
  • Functional Test Record/Playback Tool
  • Record tests in Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera
  • Data-enable tests using simple drag-and-drop features
  • Add assertions and check-points to tests visually
  • If-then, looping, and conditional test execution without scripting
  • Object Repository for sharing Web page objects between team members
  • Instant and context senstivie help and reference documentation
  • Support for Ajax and Javascript asynchronous events without additional test scripting
  • Outputs to Selenium unit tests, Selenium IDE Selenese table format formats
My open source test tool, TestMaker, delays the tipping point a little by providing the TestMaker Object Designer for record/playback and then also runs test objects written in Java, Ruby, Python, and others once those make sense. TestMaker Object Designer is a replacement for Selenium IDE. An Ajax version of Selenium IDE's functions is available in Sauce Builder.

Watch A Screencast Tutorial On TestMaker Object Designer Now

Selenium Tutorial for Beginners (c) 2012 Frank Cohen. All rights reserved.