Creating Maintainable Automated Tests

Creating Maintainable Automated Tests

3 July 2024 Stephan Petzl Leave a comment QA

Automating a large number of tests can be a daunting task, especially when it comes to maintaining them over time. Here we will provide some key strategies and best practices for creating maintainable, reliable, and self-documenting UI automation tests. These insights are derived from expert recommendations and practical examples, focusing on improving test automation workflows.

Key Strategies for Maintainable Automated Tests

To ensure your automated tests remain manageable and effective, consider the following strategies:

1. Remove Sleeps and Replace with Polling

Using sleep commands can lead to brittle tests that fail due to timing issues. Instead, implement polling mechanisms that repeatedly check for a condition until it is met. This approach makes your tests more robust and less prone to random failures.

2. Add Logging and Comments

Incorporate comprehensive logging and comments within your test scripts. Detailed logs and comments help in understanding the test flow and make debugging easier when tests fail.

3. Move Code to a Driver or Abstraction Layer

Abstracting test logic into a driver or a separate layer helps in isolating the test code from the actual implementation. This separation makes it easier to update tests when the application under test changes.

4. Use Startup/Cleanup Methods and Configuration Classes

Centralize setup and teardown activities in startup/cleanup methods and configuration classes. This approach ensures that common setup tasks are not duplicated across multiple tests.

5. Move Element Initialization to a Page Class

Organize your element locators and interactions within page classes. The Page Object Model (POM) pattern helps in maintaining code by centralizing element definitions and interactions in one place.

6. Create Helper Functions in Page Classes

Develop helper functions for common activities within your page classes. These reusable functions simplify test scripts and reduce code duplication.

7. Use Data to Drive the Tests

Implement data-driven testing by separating test data from the test scripts. This approach allows you to run the same test with different data sets, improving test coverage and maintainability.

Applying These Principles in Practice

For a practical example, consider a scenario where you need to automate tests for a Silverlight application using Telerik Test Studio:

  • Centralize Element Definitions: Instead of duplicating element definitions across multiple tests, create a shared elements page that all tests can reference. This reduces redundancy and simplifies maintenance.
  • Abstract Common Actions: Move common actions, such as navigating through a directory browser dialog, into helper functions. This makes your tests more modular and easier to update.
  • Use Configuration for Environment-Specific Settings: Store environment-specific settings, such as file paths and URLs, in configuration files. This approach ensures that tests can run on different machines without modification.

Leveraging No-Code Tools for Test Automation

Automating tests can be simplified further by using no-code test automation tools like Repeato. Repeato is designed to help you create, run, and maintain automated tests for iOS and Android applications quickly and efficiently.

With Repeato, you can:

  • Create Tests with Ease: Repeato’s no-code interface allows you to design tests without writing complex scripts, making it accessible for both technical and non-technical users.
  • Run Tests Efficiently: Repeato’s use of computer vision and AI ensures that tests are executed accurately and swiftly, reducing the time required for test execution.
  • Maintain Tests Easily: Updating and maintaining tests is straightforward with Repeato, thanks to its intuitive interface and robust test management features.

To learn more about how Repeato can streamline your test automation process, visit our getting started guide.

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