Evaluating Test Automation Tools – What Should I Consider?

One of the first steps in software test automation is to evaluate test automation tools. Many organizations key considerations in evaluating test automation tools is cost. Not us. We believe that one of the most critical criteria is the ability to recognize objects. The table below is an excerpt of one evaluation we did for a desktop and web-based software application. That's right, 'for a desktop and web-based software application'. Evaluating and selecting the testing automation tool that is best for you depends on the software that is under test. Let’s talk more about evaluating test automation tools for Object Recognition for web applications...  

Agile API Test Automation

Agile and API Test Automation Today, there are almost 20,000 public API’s available covering an almost unimaginable range of functions and applications. These API’s are often the engines driving mobile apps, web app, browser apps, IoT, and embedded devices to name a few. And thus, API usage grows daily. As the adoption of API’s continues to grow exponentially, so do the risks for businesses who don’t actively test their API’s.         Traditional QA processes often overlook the API Testing component because the GUI element is often not yet ready in the Agile development sprints. Another factor is that many believe [...]

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Selenium Software Testing Services

Selenium Software Testing Services Ever increasing functionality comes at a cost of software complexity that grows over time in ways we may not expect. Test automation assists in ensuring that new, as well as the old functions, will perform as required and expected. Why Open Source? Many companies and users got their first taste of open source software though the Linux operating system. Over the years, open source code dramatically expanded to provide options for all users in almost all areas of software development and testing. There are numerous benefits to open source software beyond the “free” price. A [...]

Quality is Key at SofTec Asia Conference

At the beginning of August, Our CEO Philip Lew spoke at the Softec Asia 2017 conference in Kuala Lumpar, Malaysia. With the theme "Testing As A Service," speakers tackled the topic with knowledge in all aspects of improving software quality. Here is a visual look at what some of the speakers focused on in their presentations.

Softec Asia 2017 theme Testing as a Service.

Cloud communications software provider Mitel benefits from testing expertise

Cloud communications software provider Mitel was experiencing various difficulties with new software releases due to lack of sufficient testers on staff. XBOSoft was hired to provide the needed manpower. Over time, XBOSoft's range of services has expanded, with ever greater satisfaction on the part of the customer.

Testing Accounting Software – Account Reconciliation

XBOSoft Testing Accounting Software - Account ReconciliationThe complexity of account reconciliation software places special demands on the testers of account reconciliation software. The primary challenge: There are two types of accounts to be reconciled, each with its own unique characteristics.

Selenium Software Automation Testing Tool

Selenium Software Testing Services Ever increasing functionality comes at a cost of software complexity that grows over time in ways we may not expect. Test automation assists in ensuring that new, as well as the old functions, will perform as required and expected. Why Open Source? Many companies and users got their first taste of open source software though the Linux operating system. Over the years, open source code dramatically expanded to provide options for all users in almost all areas of software development and testing. There are numerous benefits to open source software beyond the “free” price. A [...]

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Selenium Software Testing Services

Selenium Software Testing Services Ever increasing functionality comes at a cost of software complexity that grows over time in ways we may not expect. Test automation assists in ensuring that new, as well as the old functions, will perform as required and expected. Why Open Source? Many companies and users got their first taste of open source software though the Linux operating system. Over the years, open source code dramatically expanded to provide options for all users in almost all areas of software development and testing. There are numerous benefits to open source software beyond the “free” price. A [...]

Automation Tools a Must to Keep Pace

Agile demands continuous testing over the spectrum of the development process. Testing by people alone, no matter how skilled they are, doesn’t move quickly enough or kick the tires often enough to produce excellence software. Solving Automation Issues with Selenium

Solving Selenium Common Issues – Tips and Tricks

Solving Selenium Common Issues - Tips and Tricks At XBOSoft, we create an optimized automation framework for each client using Selenium. Over the years, we’ve discovered that while Selenium may have a very active support community, that does not guarantee finding a solution will be easy. One of the most common issues we’ve run into is object recognition. This white paper includes: Why we use Selenium, and what benefits it offers How to recognize its weaknesses and examples of using XPath axes to locate elements in Selenium WebDriver How using XPath axes makes for better automated testing Identifying XPath’s weaknesses, [...]

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Managing Agile Risk with AQAA in Atlanta

Last week, I presented at the Atlanta Quality Assurance AssociationAQAA — on “Managing Agile Software Projects Under Uncertainty.” In the beginning of the talk, we covered the reasons for agile project failure and took a vote as to why people thought or had the experience of failure in agile. The results were quite interesting... understanding why software projects succeed or fail

Avoiding the Pitfalls of Automated Performance and Load Testing

Only when apps and sites run slowly or freeze do we really notice the importance of how well they function. Applications and networks that support these services are under extreme pressure to perform flawlessly.

Getting Started With TestComplete

I’ve been working with TestComplete for several years now, on various projects. Many times, I’m tasked with bringing new testers up to speed on this automation tool. Here are a few tips for getting started with TestComplete that I've given to our new folks for reference. 

TestComplete is a very powerful tool for a wide range of application types and technologies, including Windows, .NET, WPF, Visual C++, Visual Basic, Delphi, C++ Builder, Java and Web applications and services. When getting started, here are some things to keep in mind.

Test Automation Coverage Myths

When you think of automation test coverage, what do you mean? Many prospective clients we talk to want to have 80% of tests automated or even more. When they throw out a number like that (to me, what seems arbitrary), we always ask where they got that target? More often than not, they have reasons from a business perspective, meaning they want to get stuff done faster, but no quantitative background behind these percentage goals. But if they were to achieve that magic number, it would just make them feel good inside that they have that level of coverage that helps them sleep at night. I get that. Given that, my team and I had a discussion on automation test coverage and how to determine the optimal coverage. Not surprisingly, we all had different ideas on automation test coverage is. I've listed out a few of them:
  • Functional coverage: Has each function in the program been automated?
  • Statement coverage: Has each line of the source code been executed? 
  • Condition coverage: Has each evaluation point (such as a true/false decision, or options 1-10, etc.) been executed? 

Test Automation Framework Requirements

Clients often ask why a test automation framework is so crucial. We often draw the analogy that when you build a house, you need to first do the framing. But not just any framework will do – in order for your test automation to be effective for you the framework itself needs to be designed for you.

Test Automation Frameworks – Do’s and Don’ts

We're still answering questions from our April webinar on test automation! For our last question regarding Test Automation Frameworks --  "What are do's or don'ts one should know before working on a test automation frameworks" -- we went to some of our test automation engineers and they had these comments:

Develop a thorough understanding of the software to be tested.

  1. Type of project C/S, B/S, mobile, etc - The type of app heavily influences what architecture and tools you use.
  2. Business logic of the software. Without knowing how to test the software manually and the logic behind it, its difficult to set up test automation. . .

Test Automation in Agile – Can It Be Done?

Another question from our recent webinar with @QA_nna regarding Test Automation in Agile, "Isn't it also true that automation engineers and Scripters, even ones who are well versed in testing, are often constrained in how much they can test by the amount of time it takes to actually build the automation and meet the aggressive timelines often seen in most Agile teams, and thus limiting how deep such testing actually is possible at a given moment?". We've examined your comment in several aspects.

  • True that there are always time constraints as in any project. But the time is especially constrained at the end of a sprint,

Learning Test Automation

We're often asked by our clients, for learning test automation, what kinds of skills are needed and do you have to be a developer to do test automation? 

In our webinar last week, we had several unanswered questions. One question related to learning test automation if you are not a developer? We'll try our best to answer here.

We have many on our staff who didn't start out as test automation specialists but found their way toward learning test automation through a round about way. Let's look at the skills or characteristics needed for test automation:

Agile Test Automation – Where in the Agile Lifecycle?

In yesterday's webinar, there were several questions that we were unable to handle during the webinar and we'll tackle each of them in the next few weeks. One question related to agile test automation: "In an agile lifecycle what should be the main focus of the automation to be effective?".

For those that attended the webinar, remember that @QA_Anna had a slide on different types of automation, some of which we don't typically think of:

  • Unit testing frameworks
  • Test controllers
  • Recording and playback
  • Performance testing tools

Test Automation Types – Using Automation Effectively

Lately we’ve gotten many requests from our clients and potential clients regarding test automation. Most of them fall into a couple of bucket types so we decided to list out test automation types or ways that you can use test automation, so our clients could understand what they are and we could work with them to determine what kind of automation they need. 

Interfaces or API – This type of automation ensures that data and commands that pass between modules or components of the software are automated. It is not directly related to user stories, but any of the user stories may access or call these interfaces indirectly through its execution. So if automating this type of testing

Getting Started with Software Test Automation

We are often asked by clients in "getting started with software test automation". In doing so, we've come up with 3 rules of the road that we use in all of our test automation projects: Set expectations and goals: One of the first things that usually comes out is that the client wants 80% automation in 5 months. Of course 80% and 5 months can sometimes vary, but not by much! Firstly, we could probably get there, or close if all we did was record and playback. But then we would end up with no reusable components and scripts that break with the slightest modification to the client's software. So we first start with

Mobile Application Automated Testing – Using Appium

For mobile application testing, automated testing is somewhat behind web app automated testing. Basically, there are two ways to automate mobile application testing: 1. Use commercial automation tools, like QTP, with its plugin for mobile applications. But, these kinds of tools interact with the elements defined by them (or the plugin) rather than interacting with the native applications. For this reason, we prefer Selenium for web app automated testing. For mobile application automated testing, we also want a tool like selenium that interacts with the native application. Another reason we don’t like most commercial tools is that the automation at the UI level is too difficult to maintain, especially for agile development which often has changing requirements (features) combined with quick deployment and testing. 2. Use the ‘official’ tools from the OS provider

JSAS Test Automation

More and more companies are now using Agile as their development methodology. This requires that test cases be executed, completed in a short time, and repeated very often. To reach these objectives, automated testing is a must.

There are many ways to setup your automation testing system. The purpose of this blog is not to compare andconclude which one is the best; but mainly to show an example of creating and executing JSAS test automation, one of the automation platforms that we’ve been using lately. .

First, what’s “JSAS”?

Test Automation Using HTML5 Web Sites and Web Apps

Lately, we’ve been doing a lot of test automation for HTML5 web sites. As HTML5 games become more and more popular, automating tests for Canvas, the key feature of HTML5 that is used to develop web games in most cases, has become a hot topic in software testing field. Generally, it is very difficult but possible. The difficulty lies in problems recognizing the Canvas with some automation tools or to monitor or simulate what happens in the Canvas since the game logic is implemented by JavaScript and cannot be captured from the UI.

Using XPath Axes to Locate Elements in Selenium Webdriver

With Selenium Webdriver, you normally locate an element by id, className, tag, or CSS amongst various other methods. Even though there are many ways to locate an element, for various reasons sometimes they don’t work. In this situation, you can use XPath to locate elements. This blog shows an example of how we leverage XPath in our Selenium automated testing work to locate web elements.

Coded UI Test Automation – CUITe Plug-In

This blog shortly introduces a new plug-in tool for Coded UI. Coded UI is the automation testing tool which is included in Visio Studio 2010 and is becoming more and more popular. Coded UI has many advantages such as the integration with TFS (Team Foundation Server) and the support of Silverlight. However, there are still some limitations compared to other more mature test automation tools. One of the biggest issues is that in Coded UI, the code for defining objects is mixed in with the automation scripts which cause difficulties when it comes to maintenance. Recently, I found a new plug-in for Coded UI, CUITe

QTP Scripting – Hands On Tips For How to Clean the Browser and Minimize QTP During Execution

This blog post on QTP scripting discusses how to clean the browser and remove cookies, and how to minimize QTP during test execution so you can see the application in action. When using QTP to automate tests with a browser, we want to have a clean browser without any cookies. Rather than record the action as select tools-Internet Options, there is a much more elegant way. QTP has the delete cookie function itself.

QTP Scripting – Emulating Keyboard Actions

When we do QTP scripting, sometimes we need emulate keyboard actions such as typing letters, moving directions (Up, Down, Left,Right) and hitting some function keys such as “Enter” and F1. WSH enables us to do this. WSH is an abbreviation of Windows Script Host. It provides scripting abilities and is used for a variety of purposes, including logon scripts, administration and general automation.

Software Test Automation with QTP – Programming with VBScript

When we do software test automation, one of the most common tools we use is Quick Test Professional (QTP). VBScript (VBS) is the default programming language for QTP. For a junior tester, recording, modifying and playing a script is enough for a beginner. But such methods have limitations since many test cases need more logic and conditional interaction. Going beyond script recording requires using VBS. VBS not only provides script robustness, but also allows you to build a flexible automation framework. In this blog, I’ll write a brief script to show some basic principles when using VBS for QTP.

Performance Testing and Test Automation Best Practices Webinar

On August 8 2012, together with BlackLine Systems, we held a webinar on Performance Testing and Test Automation Best Practices entitled: How to Achieve and Maintain High Quality SaaS Software in the Cloud Donna McCollum from Blackline Systems and Philip Lew from XBOSoft discussed lessons learned and best practices on how to set up test automation and performance testing for cloud software that is delivered with a SaaS model. If you'd like to keep updated on upcoming webinars on performance testing or test automation or other QA related topics please follow us on twitter: Follow @XBOSoft

How to make Test Automation work in Agile Development

Today we had another webinar in the series of webinars we do together with our friends at Go2Group on Agile QA. Today we discussed best practices on setting up test automation in an agile development environment. The webinar was moderated by Jan Princen and speakers were Mike Maheu and Alan Trefzger. But since Alan had some issues dialing in, it was just Mike and Jan this time. We had a full house and the audience asked some great questions. Thanks! Enjoy and hope to see you there next time! Jan

Software Test Automation – What Percentage Should be Automated?

From February to April 2012 we conducted a survey on the state of testing in Scrum development teams. The results will be published soon. One of the questions we asked, and I already want to share with you, was what percentage of the respondents' test cases / test scenario's are covered by automated tests. Only 28% of the respondents automate more than 50% of their cases. Of course each project has their own peculiarities but in the Agile teams we work with we usually aim to automate more than 50% of the test cases in order for regression testing not [...]

Mobile Test Automation – When Not to Automate

Mobile applications continue to multiply as every week thousands of mobile applications are uploaded onto the Internet for end users who download to various types of mobile devices and operating systems. We want to try to save time and effort and automate where we can but as with any test automation, the first consideration is what should and what should not be automated, or can/cannot be automated. What parts should remain for manual testing? Automation should be used judiciously in the right places. Here are a few places that are best left to manual testing. Where to Use Manual Testing [...]

How To Show Silktest Automation Results in Real Time

The SilkTest® built-in result or logging system can’t show results in real time, so you have to use the API combined with some database operations. We can use these methods to write all the execution results into a remote database during script execution; then write some ASP pages to retrieve the data from the database; then deploy the pages to an application server like IIS and finally post the site publicly. Then, your client can log into the ASP site and read the automation status and results at any time.

Five Tips in Using Visual Studio Coded UI

With Microsoft's Visual Studio having an integrated development and test environment, we've been working with several customers using Coded UI for test automation. Coded UI is a new capability of Visual Studio 2010 which provides a way to create fully automated tests to validate the functionality and behavior of your application’s user interface. The following are some benefits from using Coded UI: Support for Microsoft technologies (e.g. Dot net): With the application developed by Microsoft technology, the objects contained in the application can be easily recognized by Coded UI and the properties of objects are visible. Friendly UI for automation testers to create scripts: Not only because it is based on C# and Visual Studio IDE, but also it delivers an additional GUI to help testers modify the existing scripts (this feature is in service pack 2). Easily integrated into TFS server and controlled by Test Manager. By using Test Manager, testers can decide when the automation scripts to be executed and which machine (physical/virtual) to execute them on. The automation scripts will be executed automatically based on the schedule and then the results will be reported. However there are some limitations in Coded UI. For example, it does not support Flash and Flex technology and currently only supports IE and Firefox browsers. Based on my experience, I’ve listed out 5 tips in implementing Coded UI for test automation to help you save some time and get on the fast track...

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