Please post your Web Driver questions in official Web Driver forum

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

STF (SeleniumTestsFramework) on maven repository

Since the commencement of STF it required installation of STF jar locally. This was a tedious process since for each new update of STF, the jar file should be installed locally. But not any more :-)

I am happy to announce the release of STF to maven repository. To be able use STF you would need to add following dependency to you pom file - 


that's all, and maven will download STF for you.

You can also download Sample Selenium Project which uses and illustrates STF features.

In case you are a Selenium Beginners, then you should first begin with Selenium Training Videos

Have a question on STF? Is there a feature missing? don't forget to post on Testing Forum :-) 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Do you need BDD style of system tests ?

BDD was largely introduced as a bridge between domain experts who are usually not technical users and Engineers who are supposedly no domain experts. BDD gives an ability to domain experts to describe application feature in Given, When, Then style and these are then turned in to real application feature by Engineers. All stakeholders have common reference of understanding.
But it does not stop there, there was great value (and probably there is ) seen in writing system tests which follow BDD style. JBehave, Cucumber-JVM come on mind quickly. These APIs also help bridge the gap between technical and not technical user, but the questions we need to ask is -
  • Would you be able to get product specialist write the feature files? If not then you would have two sources of information one written by product specialist (probably in JIRA or another tool) and another feature file written by developer or test engineer
  • Will product specialists ever execute the test?
  • Do you want to introduce an extra layer of steps when you might be the only one working and verifying the tests?
BDD Scenario from Dan North  - 
+Scenario 1: Account is in credit+
Given the account is in credit
And the card is valid
And the dispenser contains cash
When the customer requests cash
Then ensure the account is debited
And ensure cash is dispensed
And ensure the card is returned

Modification from James Basch -
+Scenario 1: Account is in credit+
Given the account is in credit
And the card is valid
And the dispenser contains cash
When the customer requests cash
Then check that the account is debited
And check that cash is dispensed
And check that the card is returned
And check that nothing happens that should n’t happen and everything else happens that should happen for all variations of this scenario and all possible states of the ATM and all possible states of the customer’s account and all possible states of the rest of the database and all possible states of the system as a whole, and anything happening in the cloud that should not matter but might matter.
  • Are you ready to deal with the complexity of information flow when you have to maintain the state from step to step ?
And how do you solve the communication problem if you don't use cucumber? Talk to your stack holders, no amount tools can replace face to face communication. BDD is no guarantee of not doing things wrong and decision is yours.
When I was writing cucumber tests then they became source of truth for manual testing team to assume application works well and in case test fail I would have to fix them. I am not sure if cucumber solves any problem when used in this manner.

Thursday, May 28, 2015


Back to Appium Tutorial Index
Update chrome driver binaries -
At times chrome browser on real device may not work and can be fixed by updating chrome driver binaries which are downloaded by appium. download latest chrome driver binaries from -
And replace them in your appium download location, The location looks as following on my Ubuntu - /home/tarun/node-v0.12.2-linux-x64/lib/node_modules/appium/build/chromedriver/linux
Using Chrome browser on non rooted devices -
If you have a non rooted device then chrome would work for only version higher than 33, so if you using a version of chrome lower than 33.0 then upgrade it to higher version. This may be far easier than rooting the device :-) Moreover since chrome browser update automatically on Android hence you would like to test on latest version of chrome browser.
Killing a running instance of adb -

If you come across following error when executing tests -
org.openqa.selenium.SessionNotCreatedException: A new session could not be created. (Original error: Command failed: /bin/sh -c /home/tarun/Documents/mine/lib/android-sdk-linux/platform-tools/adb -s adb server is out of date.  killing... wait-for-device ADB server didn't ACK * could not start server *)
then you may already have adb server up and running and you would have kill it. kill adb from command line as following -
killall -9 adb

How do I find the device version and name -
Couple of examples on other sites set VERSION and deviceName capabilities for android but appium seem to ignore it for android. Any way, these capabilities may be used by Appium in future and can be set as - 

capabilities.setCapability(CapabilityType.VERSION, “4.4”);
If your device is running 4.4.2 then VERSION is 4.4, if your device is running 5.1.1 then version is 5.1 and so on
With appium version 1.3.7 following message is logged in appium server which indicates that VERSION capability is anyway ignored by appium -

info: [debug] The following desired capabilities were provided, but not recognized by appium. They will be passed on to any other services running on this server. : version
The deviceName capability can be set as - 

capabilities.setCapability(“deviceName”, “111bd508″);
The device name is found using adb command as - 
adb devices -l

List of devices attached 
emulator-5554          device product:sdk_phone_x86_64 model:Android_SDK_built_for_x86_64 device:generic_x86_64
Herein emulator-5554 is the deviceName

The deviceName capability is currently ignored for Android. Reference 

Executing appium tests on mobile web

Back to Appium Tutorial Index

Having set up appium, lets run our first tests. But before that start the appium and android device /  emulator as following -

navigate to appium installation, which is following on my Ubuntu -
and start appium
Open another command prompt and execute -
adb devices
and you should see list of devices attached as -
List of devices attached
emulator-5554    device
If you see any error message then re-verify all the steps mentioned earlier to make sure none of the step is missed

Sample JUnit project to run tests on android emulator
  • Clone the following appium project -
  • Import project in IDEA (or your favorite IDE) and Open AndroidEmulatorWebTest class -

  • Right click on method testMobileWebOnEmulator and click Run. This would execute test on android emulator -

Sample JUnit project to run tests on android emulator

Use the same project but AndroidDeviceWebTest class to run test on mobile device. Of course you need to have device setup as explained in previous steps

Set up an android device to run appium tests

Back to Appium Tutorial Index

While emulators are cheap solutions to run automated tests on mobile device. They can not emulate behavior of real user. if your requirement is to run tests on a mobile chrome browser then you are better off using android device since chrome browser can not be installed on emulator.

Following configurations are required to be able to run tests on mobile device -

  • Download appropriate version of chrome browser on your device
  • Enable to Developer Mode on device. For ex, to enable developer mode on moto-4.4.4 do following -

Tap  moto-g-apps
Tap Settings
Tap  About phone
Tap the Build number field 7 times
You will begin seeing a message as you approach the 7 touches
Tap the back arrow once complete, and Developer options will now appear under Settings. Once the developer options are enabled under settings in Moto G, it will be there permanently. Hence it is not necessary to repeat these procedures again.You can also disable the developers options if you want.  
Once you tap developer options under settings, you can drag it to left to disable the options.
  • Disable/uncheck “Verify Apps” settings, else it can prevent some of Appium’s helper apps from launching and doing their job correctly. To disable “Verify Apps” settings select  HOME > Security – PERSONAL > and uncheck the Verify app checkbox

To connect device to adb -

Under Developer Option select “USB Debugging checkbox”
Note: When you connect a device running Android 4.2.2 or higher to your computer, the system shows a dialog asking whether to accept an RSA key that allows debugging through this computer. This security mechanism protects user devices because it ensures that USB debugging and other adb commands cannot be executed unless you're able to unlock the device and acknowledge the dialog. This requires that you have adb version 1.0.31 (available with SDK Platform-tools r16.0.1 and higher) in order to debug on a device running Android 4.2.2 or higher. (if you don’t see this option and after enabling “USB debugging”, and command “adb devices” list your device(s) then check or uncheck “USB debugging” a few time, this how it worked for me :-))
When plugged in over USB, you can verify that your device is connected by executing adb devices from your SDK platform-tools/ directory. If connected, you'll see the device name listed as a "device."

Appium and Android setup

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Android Requirements
  • Android SDK API >= 17 (Additional features require 18/19)
  • Appium supports Android on OS X, Linux and Windows. Follow these directions for setting up your environment properly for testing on different OSes:
Android setup does not differ greatly on different operating system. Let’s look at detailed setup instructions for Ubuntu  -

Install node.js (v0.10 or greater)

Since appium server is written in node.js, first node.js need to be installed. Following this appium can be installed from npm -

Setup with Ubuntu: curl -sL | sudo bash -
Then install with Ubuntu: sudo apt-get install -y nodejs

DON’T install node js using above method, it would result in following error when starting appium -
error: Appium will not work if used or installed with sudo. Please rerun/install as a non-root user. If you had to install Appium using `sudo npm install -g appium`, the solution is to reinstall Node using a method (Homebrew, for example) that doesn't require sudo to install global npm packages.

To fix it -

  • Download latest nodejs linux binaries (or windows, mac if you are not on linux) form
  • Extract into a folder that doesn't need sudo rights to access, for example your home folder.
tar -xvf <downloaded_binary_tar.gz>
{extracted file looks as following in my home directory -
  • Add the following line to your ~/.bashrc file.
export PATH=$PATH:<full_path_of_the_extracted_node_folder>/bin

appium is installed in bin folder and updating path would let you execute appium from command line as described later -
refresh bashrc so you don’t have to logout and login -
source ~/.bashrc
  • Open a now terminal and execute
npm install -g appium
    {appium installation looks as following on my ubuntu -
  • Now start appium as -
cd /home/tarun/node-v0.12.2-linux-x64/bin
If everything goes right then you would have appium server up and running as following  
info: Welcome to Appium v1.3.7 (REV 72fbfaa116d3d9f6a862600ee99cf02f6d0e2182)
info: Appium REST http interface listener started on
info: Console LogLevel: debug

Install Android SDK

  • Install android sdk from -

Unpack the .zip file you've downloaded. The SDK files are downloaded separately to a user-specified directory

By default, Android SDK does not include everything required to start development. The SDK separates tools, platforms, and other components into packages that can be downloaded as needed using the Android SDK Manager. Hence we must first download a few packages and add to Android SDK.
  • Downloading additional packages and latest SDK tools. launch the Android SDK Manager.
Open a terminal and navigate to the tools/ directory in the location where the Android SDK was installed, then execute android sdk.
For ex it looks as following on my ubuntu -
cd /Documents/mine/lib/android-sdk-linux/tools$
./android &

  • As a minimum when setting up the Android SDK, you should download the latest tools and Android platform:
    1. Open the Tools directory and select:
      • Android SDK Tools
      • Android SDK Platform-tools
      • Android SDK Build-tools (highest version)
    1. Open the first Android X.X folder (the latest version) and select:
      • SDK Platform
      • A system image for the emulator, such as ARM EABI v7a System Image
  1. AndroidTools.png
3. Get the support library for additional APIs
The Android Support Library provides an extended set of APIs that are compatible with most versions of Android.
Open the Extras directory and select:
    • Android Support Repository
    • Android Support Library
  • AndroidTools.png
  • Once you've selected all the desired packages, continue to install:

  1. Click Install X packages.
  2. In the next window, double-click each package name on the left to accept the license agreement for each.
  3. Click Install.

The download progress is shown at the bottom of the SDK Manager window. Do not exit the SDK Manager or it will cancel the download.

Creating new emulator
Android emulator can be created from command line or using AVD (Android Virtual Device manager). AVD can be launched from Android SDK Manager as following -
Android SDK Manager > Tools > Manage AVDs  - launches Android Virtual Device (AVD) manager
You can create a new device or select any of the existing Device Definitions, for example select Nexus 5 by Google and click Create AVD button

Select Target, CPU/ABI, Skin and click ok to set up new virtual device. When you click Ok then device would be listed under “Android Virtual Devices” tab -

Select device > click Start button and Launch the device. This would launch Android emulator -

NOTE: if Android emulator opens a blank screen then select Emulation Options > Use Host GPU and start emulator again. This would also increase the emulator performance drastically.

Setup ANDROID_HOME variable

Finally, set $ANDROID_HOME to be your Android SDK path. This looks as following on my ubuntu -
  • export ANDROID_HOME=/home/tarun/Documents/mine/lib/android-sdk-linux
  • export PATH=$PATH:/home/tarun/Documents/mine/lib/android-sdk-linux/tools
  • and then execute source ~/.bashrc
Install Android Debug Bridge (adb) -
Execute following command to install adb -
sudo apt-get install android-tools-adb
Android Debug Bridge (adb) is a command line tool that lets you communicate with an emulator or android device. It is a client-server program and includes three components:
  • A client, which runs on development machine. You can invoke a client from a shell by issuing an adb command. Other Android tools such as the ADT plugin and DDMS also create adb clients. For example if you want to see list of emulator/devices running then execute following command -
adb devices
  • A server, which runs as a background process on development machine. The server manages communication between the client and the adb daemon running on an emulator or device.
  • A daemon, which runs as a background process on each emulator or device instance.
You can find the adb tool in <sdk>/platform-tools/ directory. It is available on following directory on my linux - /home/tarun/Documents/mine/lib/android-sdk-linux/platform-tools
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