Building a GUI test automation framework: An Introduction

In my internet travels I have not come across any good guides on how to go about building a test framework with tools such as TestPartner, WinRunner, Rational Robot or TestComplete.

To try and fill this gap I am going to start a new series of posts on how to build a GUI automation stack. As much as possible this will be generic, and not focus on any one tool, but provide general guidelines that you can use on any of the tools that are available.

Why do I need a GUI test framework, doesn’t the tool just work out of the box?

Well yes they do work out of the box, but if you want to use them for any serious enterprise level testing effort, you will need to invest some time up front to make life easier in the long run.

In this series of posts I want to provide some of that guidance by essentially providing a high level road map of the path steps you need to take. Then you can either take those steps yourselves, of hire me, or someone else to take those steps for you.

This series of posts will cover the following:

  • Design goals for a GUI testing framework
  • Mapping the GUI
  • Lifecycle of an Automated test
  • Handling errors and writing results
  • Controlling the browser with the IE object model
  • Improving test perfomance

Plus anything else I think of along the way … or anyone wants to ask about, just send a mail or leave a comment.

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