The 136th time

Experience Reports, Software Testing

There’s so much ado about Test Automation I wouldn’t want to feel left out doing it.
For years now, we’ve been made to believe that test automation is the future of testing. For instance, no ‘manual testing’ would be needed because a machine would be able to do just as well allegedly.

I often feel the trending of test automation to be a dangerous thing, but today, it helped me greatly! I’m not a technical person, nor do I have the ambition to spend my days coding. I do have been experimenting for a while with tools. A Ruby course here, some tryouts with the SamouraiWTF virtual machine and so on.

Selenium IDE is a very easy to use, easily installable add-on and incredibly useful. It’s great for throw-away scripts but bad at anything else (like every record-and-play tool). Today I used it by recording a few steps to log in to the webapp, execute a query and consult record details. From those details I triggered the functionality “Go to next record”.
I had noticed before that this functionality behaved slower than others, but testing this by “clicking and waiting” was tedious. Some tweaks to the recorded steps by adding some waiting time and copy-pasting 2 relevant steps about 200 times, I had the script I needed.

Fired up the browser, pressed F12 for the developer tools, clicked play and went for coffee. The script ran for longer than this, but the beauty of selenium is that it can run in the background. On the 136’th time, the application client ran out of memory resulted by a javascript overload.

A good find and a good use of test automation.

Remember though:
It was a human having the test idea;
It was a human who had the hunch and how to pursue it;
It was a human who created the script;
And it was a human who investigated the results.

It took a few others to interpret the error and eventually fix it.

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