Quick Tip: Selenium – select / deselect a value from a dropdown

The What

Having an HTML dropdown on a web page, i would like to select, via Selenium, an element from it, or deselect the selected one.

An example of an HTML representation of a dropdown can be found below – it displays a list of winter months:

<select id="winter">
 <option value="Dec">December</option>
 <option value="Jan">January</option>
 <option value="Feb">February</option>
 </select>

This element would look something like:

dropdown

The task is to easily select / deselect an element from the dropdwon.

The How

Continue reading Quick Tip: Selenium – select / deselect a value from a dropdown

A few developer principles that testers should follow

I’m thinking you should, in no particular order…

  1. Start from the basic . When learning a new language, start from the beginning. Understand the elementary notions of it. Make sure you know what the language represents, what it is used for, how to write it properly. Read the tutorials, try out the examples.
  2. Be lazy. Don’t reinvent the wheel. If you need some code that someone has already developed, use it. Use existing libraries where possible.
  3. Modularize, don’t copy paste. When you know you have bits of code that will repeat themselves, extract them in a separate method and call that method wherever the code is needed.
  4. Think and plan before you write your tests. Take time to analyze the requirements, to discuss the implementation with the developers, in order to identify the broadest and most relevant set of test cases. Take notes. Visualize how regular users will interact with the site. Make sketches. Jumping into testing just to finish it will make you skip some obvious scenarios.
  5. Name things properly. Whenever you pick a name for a method, attribute or test scenario, make it relevant to what it is supposed to do. Describe it as much as possible. Use a decent amount of letters (not 2-3 and not 100).
  6. Ask questions. Whenever something is not clear, or when you just need a confirmation of how well you understand the requirements, ask the people around you for information. No matter how basic or stupid the question might sound, it’s the start of a conversation which benefits all the people included in it.
  7. Separate concerns. Don’t put all the code in one class. Analyze what you must write. What part is the setup, what part is the verification? Usually tests should largely focus on the actual testing, not the setup, so maybe extract that part into a separate class/unit, so that you minimize how large a test it. Also, you can put in all validations in a separate place. In this case, when you read the test, you should have – a line of code which calls the setup; the test logic; one line of code that performs the validation (if possible).

Continue reading A few developer principles that testers should follow

Quick Tip: IntelliJ – easily updating method calls when method signature changes

The What

I wrote a Java method, whose signature contains a number of parameters. This method is called by many other methods (i use the method in my tests). After a while i realize one of the parameters is not needed anymore. I want to change the method signature and to update all its’ references throughout my code.

The How

Continue reading Quick Tip: IntelliJ – easily updating method calls when method signature changes

Selenium tests, the Object Oriented Way

Some while ago i published an article in a local magazine on the topic of writing Selenium tests in an Object Oriented fashion.  As i believe this is a very useful way of reducing the number of asserts tests can include, and to expand to a bigger audience, here is a different approach to writing Selenium tests.

This approach is recommended when you have, for example, a big module whose properties you must compare to the expected ones, after performing an action or when it comes to testing the translation of the page. Continue reading Selenium tests, the Object Oriented Way

Improving your code by using IntelliJ’s Inspections feature

Writing proper code in your IDE is made easier when using IntelliJ, due to its’ code analysis features. One option to perform a comprehensive coding issue search is to use the Inspect Code feature IntelliJ provides. From the class you want to check for issues, right click (inside the class, in the editor) and choose Analyze –> Inspect Code. Continue reading Improving your code by using IntelliJ’s Inspections feature

Page navigation with Selenium

While running tests with Selenium, you might want to navigate between the pages that are opening, without knowing or caring about the URL that is assigned to them. You would like to use the browser’s back and forward functionality, to just go back one page from the current one, or forward to the next page. You might also want to refresh the current page, without performing a driver.get(“someURL”). Continue reading Page navigation with Selenium

Working with cookies in Selenium

What are cookies

Cookies are text files stored on your computer, that contain information sites need to remember of your visit on them, like some of your preferences that the sites will persist while browsing their pages (for example: the language you are viewing the site in, the username you logged in with, the contents of your shopping cart, and so on). Cookies are used by your browser at the time you access the site. Each cookie has a name and a value, but also a scope, determined by the domain and path properties of the cookie (these are used to determine the site they belong to). A website can only set cookies valid on its’ domain and subdomains, not domains that do not belong to it. An expiry date can also be assigned to the cookie.
There are several types of cookies: session cookies are assigned to a website and are only valid while the site is being accessed. After leaving the site or closing the browser, these objects are deleted. Also, persistent cookies are used, those cookies that have an expiration date and that are valid beyond closing the browser.

Cookie objects supported by WebDriver

In the org.openqa.selenium module from the selenium-api library, you will find a class that emulates cookie objects, named of course, Cookie. A Cookie object can at most have the following attributes, as defined in this class: name; value; path; domain; expiry; isSecure. A Cookie object must have at least two attributes, namely name and value.
The Cookie object offers several constructors to build your cookie object, having the need to pass in the following parameters:

  • Minimal constructor with parameters: name, value. Example of creating such a Cookie object:
    Cookie cookie = new Cookie("testCookie", "testValue");
    
  • name, value, path
  • name, value, path, expiry
  • name, value, path, expiry, domain
  • name, value, path, expiry, domain, isSecure

Working with cookies in WebDriver

All methods related to cookies in WebDriver are accessible from the Options interface. First you must declare a variable for the webdriver, for example:

private WebDriver driver;

Then, you can use the cookie methods as described below:

  • Get all cookies: After opening a page whose cookies you want to find, use:
    driver.manage().getCookies();

    You can save these values in a set, to use them later on:

    Set<Cookie> cookies = driver.manage().getCookies();
  • Get a certain cookie: When you know the name of the cookie whose properties you want to get, you can use:
    driver.manage().getCookieNamed("cookieName");

    Storing the properties of this cookie is done by assigning the result of the above method to a Cookie object:

    Cookie theCookie = driver.manage().getCookieNamed("cookieName");
    
  • Deleting all the cookies on a page is done easily, by using:
    driver.manage().deleteAllCookies();
  • Deleting only a particular cookie, whose name you know, is done by using:
       driver.manage().deleteCookieNamed("cookieName");
  • Adding a new cookie: To add a new cookie to the browser, first you must create a Cookie object with all its’ needed properties. Afterwards, just use the following method:
    driver.manage().addCookie(cookieName);

    After adding the cookie, for it to be applied to the page you opened, a page refresh must be done right after adding it.

    Tip: In case you are not sure how to add the ‘domain’ property to a cookie, but you know what page it must be active on, you can: initially open that page; delete the cookie from the page, if it exists; create the Cookie object without setting the ‘domain’ property; add the cookie to the already opened page; refresh the page. The domain will be added automatically.

  • Editing cookies: You cannot directly edit the properties of a cookie. Instead, what you can do is: delete the existing cookie from the browser; create a new Cookie variable to reflect the new values you want for its’ properties ; add the new cookie to the browser; refresh the page.
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