Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Oracle Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Elizabeth White, AppDynamics Blog, Liz McMillan, William Schmarzo

Related Topics: Java, Weblogic, AJAX & REA, Oracle, HP

Java: Article

An Introduction to Abbot

A Friendly JUnit Extension for GUI Testing

Graphical user interface (GUI) testing is a potentially problematic area because constructing effective test cases is more difficult than the corresponding application logic. The roadblocks to effective functional GUI testing are:

  • Traditional test coverage criteria like "80% coverage of the lines of code" may not be sufficient to trap all the user interaction scenarios.
  • End users often use a different user task interaction model than the one conceived by the development team.

    Functional GUI testing needs to deal with GUI events as well as the effects of the underlying application logic that results in changes to the data and presentation.

    The common methods for functional GUI testing are the "record and execute" script technique and writing test programs for different scenarios. In the "record and execute," the test designer interacts with the GUI and all the events are recorded in a script. The script can later be replayed to re-create user interactions for a particular scenario. In the test programs, the test designer tries to understand and write tests for the various GUI decision points.

    This article discusses how Abbot can be used to quickly and effectively come up with a comprehensive GUI test framework for Swing GUI applications. Abbot (http://abbot.sourceforge.net/) is a JUnit extension for Swing GUI testing. It provides an interesting framework that can be used for test case generation as well as "record and execute" scripting.

    Introduction to Abbot
    Abbot builds upon the java.awt.Robot class to provide an automated event generation and validation framework for Swing GUI components. The framework can be used to create, record, and execute scripts and programmatic test cases in Java. Abbot also has a script editor called Costello that facilitates the creation of scripts in XML. The framework can also be well integrated to run with JUnit.

    To illustrate the use of Abbot to create a GUI test infrastructure, this article will make use of the following two scenarios.

    1.   GUI already exists: The GUI has been coded and the application needs to be tested, but no unit tests are available. This scenario will primarily make use of the "record and execute" style and then focus on how test suites can be created and run with JUnit.

    2.   GUI has not been coded: The GUI has been designed on paper; however, no working code exists. This scenario will primarily focus on creating test cases in Java. This method will create a homogeneous suite of tests both for the back-end application code and the GUI.

    The two scenarios focus on the end-point cases in functional GUI testing. The principles mentioned can be mixed and matched to suit the needs of the project. To get started with Abbot, download the JAR files and place them in the lib directory of the project.

    Scenario One: GUI Already Exists
    In this scenario, most of the GUI has already been coded. Automated testing is not available and the testing is mainly being done by hand. The goal is to come up with a test suite in the shortest time possible so that the quality metrics for the project can be met effectively.

    The script editor Costello will be used to develop a battery of tests. Costello provides the "record and execute" functionality that will allow us to record different user interaction scenarios with the GUI and test those scenarios efficiently. The scripts that record the user interactions are saved as XML. The salient features of the scripts that help in rapidly creating a functional test framework are:

  • Focuses on test creation: The XML-based scripts can be written rapidly (directly or by using Costello) and are dynamically interpreted by Abbot. There's no need to write new code and compile test cases.
  • Focuses on validating GUI decision points: Abbot allows the test creators to add assertions to check for values resulting from user interactions. The assert tag is used to check for valid results from a user interaction before the script proceeds. This feature is very useful, as it helps pinpoint the step in which the GUI fails and aids in regression testing.
  • Provides infrastructure to create robust scripts: Some GUI "record and execute" tools produce very fragile scripts. These tools not only store the events but also the GUI component position information, such as coordinates, to identify them. These scripts are very fragile because any change in positional attributes (changes in layout or running the script on a different platform) breaks the scripts. Abbot uses a number of attributes to dynamically identify the component without depending on any positional attributes. These attributes in aggregate form a component reference, which can be used within the script even before the component itself necessarily exists.
  • Provides a high-level abstraction over the Java Robot class: Abbot builds on top of the Java Robot class by providing a layer of abstraction. The abstraction layer allows end users to create test cases that can capture high-level semantics like the OK button, Select CO from the list of states, etc. This makes the scripts easy to understand and enhances them in the future.

    An example of a test script in XML is provided in Listing 1.

    With this background about the features of the script, it's time to look into how to use the script editor to create the test cases. The sample GUI shown in Figure 1 is an example from the Java Swing tutorial available at java.sun.com.

    The GUI is a Celsius-to-Fahrenheit converter that takes in a numeric value and on the button click displays the converted result in Fahrenheit. To test this GUI, we can write some simple GUI tests to verify the results on the input of a positive number, a negative number, and a nonnumeric input.

  • More Stories By Satadip Dutta

    Satadip Dutta is a software architect at Hewlett-Packard (http://devresource.hp.com) and has been programming in Java since 1997. His areas of interest include distributed software architecture, Web services, and user interface design. Satadip holds an MS in Computer Science from Virginia Tech.

    Comments (7) View Comments

    Share your thoughts on this story.

    Add your comment
    You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

    In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


    Most Recent Comments
    Ashwath 01/18/05 02:34:16 AM EST

    I tried to run the code that u haven for 'GUI already exista' scenario. But it doen't work.. give me some eg.s

    tlroche 08/22/03 10:05:14 PM EDT

    "Abbot for SWT" (project name=abbotforswt) is an Eclipse plugin
    which seeks to extend Abbot ... for SWT (but you guessed :-) It is
    currently available only from the IIOSB (a "walled garden" version of
    SourceForge inaccessible outside IBM) @

    https://w3.opensource.ibm.com/projects/abbotforswt/

    (IIOSB residence is intended to be temporary. We are currently in IBM
    Open Source Steering Committee pre-review, and therefore hope to
    contribute our extensions back to Abbot sometime this millenium :-)
    For more detail, including

    * how abbotforswt extends j.a.Robot and Abbot

    * abbotforswt vs blackbox tools (e.g. RobotJ/XDE Tester)

    * related Eclipse 3.0 plan items

    see the (currently rather crude) abbotforswt homepage

    To demonstrate abbotforswt's feasibility, we have taken scenario 2
    from the JDJ article above, recoded its SUT (a dialog) in SWT, and
    designed and implemented an API targeting SWT equivalent to Abbot's
    existing API targeting AWT/Swing. For more details, see our release
    notes.

    Sound interesting? Try it out! However, first:

    <required type="legalese">

    If you are an IBMer and have NOT already completed your "OSPG
    training," please read the Open Source Participation Guidelines
    before you check out any code.

    </required>

    You have 2 installation options. Instructions are for Eclipse/
    WebSphere Studio users:

    0 Install the release zip. Goto our release page

    read the "IMPORTANT NOTICE", then follow the instructions in the
    release notes

    Note that you need not register for IIOSB to get the release, but we
    hope you will, because you're a fine human being. (Apologies for
    speciesism to all the fine non-human programmers out there :-)

    1 Install from CVS. This is a good first step toward becoming an
    abbotforswt contributor!

    - Run your development workbench (devbench) with either Target
    Platform pointing to a WSAD build (which is how I tested), or just
    import org.apache.xerces (should work, but not tested).

    - Create a new CVS repository location with

    host=cvs.opensource.ibm.com
    repository path=/cvs/abbotforswt
    user=anonymous
    no password
    connection type=pserver

    and check out HEAD/abbotforswt.

    - Browse to our release notes

    search or scroll to "run the demo"

    - Skip to step 4

    The demo can then be run in each of 3 ways, all of which are
    documented in the release notes:

    * using Test Collector in a launched WebSphere Studio build

    * using pde.junit to launch an Eclipse or WS build

    * using Eclipse's JUnit to launch just the UI

    tlroche 08/22/03 09:55:08 PM EDT

    "Abbot for SWT" (project name=abbotforswt) is an Eclipse plugin which seeks to extend Abbot ... for SWT (but you guessed :-) It is currently available only from the IIOSB (a "walled garden" version of SourceForge inaccessible outside IBM) @

    https://w3.opensource.ibm.com/projects/abbotforswt/

    (IIOSB residence is intended to be temporary. We are currently in IBM Open Source Steering Committee pre-review, and therefore hope to contribute our extensions back to Abbot sometime this millenium :-) For more detail, including

    * how abbotforswt extends j.a.Robot and Abbot

    * abbotforswt vs blackbox tools (e.g. RobotJ/XDE Tester)

    * related Eclipse 3.0 plan items

    see the (currently rather crude) abbotforswt homepage

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/~abbotforswt/

    To demonstrate abbotforswt's feasibility, we have taken scenario 2 from the JDJ article above, recoded its SUT (a dialog) in SWT, and designed and implemented an API targeting SWT equivalent to Abbot's existing API targeting AWT/Swing. For more details, see our release notes @

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/shownotes.php?release_id=597

    Sound interesting? Try it out! However, first:

    If you are an IBMer and have NOT already completed your "OSPG training," please read the Open Source Participation Guidelines

    http://ltc.linux.ibm.com/open_source/ospg.html

    before you check out any code.

    You have 2 installation options. Instructions are for Eclipse/ WebSphere Studio users:

    0 Install the release zip. Goto our release page

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/showfiles.php?group_id=1023

    read the "IMPORTANT NOTICE", then follow the instructions in the release notes

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/shownotes.php?release_id=597

    Note that you need not register for IIOSB to get the release, but we hope you will, because you're a fine human being. (Apologies for speciesism to all the fine non-human programmers

    http://www.newtechusa.com/PPI/pressroom.asp#higher

    out there :-)

    1 Install from CVS. This is a good first step toward becoming an abbotforswt contributor!

    - Run your development workbench (devbench) with either Target Platform pointing to a WSAD build (which is how I tested), or just import org.apache.xerces (should work, but not tested).

    - Create a new CVS repository location with

    host=cvs.opensource.ibm.com
    repository path=/cvs/abbotforswt
    user=anonymous
    no password
    connection type=pserver

    and check out HEAD/abbotforswt.

    - Browse to our release notes

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/shownotes.php?release_id=597

    search or scroll to "run the demo"

    - Skip to step 4

    The demo can then be run in each of 3 ways, all of which are documented in the release notes:

    * using Test Collector in a launched WebSphere Studio build

    * using pde.junit to launch an Eclipse or WS build

    * using Eclipse's JUnit to launch just the UI

    tlroche 08/22/03 09:51:39 PM EDT

    "Abbot for SWT" (project name=abbotforswt) is an Eclipse plugin which seeks to extend Abbot ... for SWT (but you guessed :-) It is currently available only from the IIOSB (a "walled garden" version of SourceForge inaccessible outside IBM) @

    https://w3.opensource.ibm.com/projects/abbotforswt/

    (IIOSB residence is intended to be temporary. We are currently in IBM Open Source Steering Committee pre-review, and therefore hope to contribute our extensions back to Abbot sometime this millenium :-) For more detail, including

    * how abbotforswt extends j.a.Robot and Abbot

    * abbotforswt vs blackbox tools (e.g. RobotJ/XDE Tester)

    * related Eclipse 3.0 plan items

    see the (currently rather crude) abbotforswt homepage

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/~abbotforswt/

    To demonstrate abbotforswt's feasibility, we have taken scenario 2 from the JDJ article above, recoded its SUT (a dialog) in SWT, and designed and implemented an API targeting SWT equivalent to Abbot's existing API targeting AWT/Swing. For more details, see our release notes @

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/shownotes.php?release_id=597

    Sound interesting? Try it out! However, first:

    If you are an IBMer and have NOT already completed your "OSPG training," please read the Open Source Participation Guidelines

    http://ltc.linux.ibm.com/open_source/ospg.html

    before you check out any code.

    You have 2 installation options. Instructions are for Eclipse/ WebSphere Studio users:

    0 Install the release zip. Goto our release page

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/showfiles.php?group_id=1023

    read the "IMPORTANT NOTICE", then follow the instructions in the release notes

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/shownotes.php?release_id=597

    Note that you need not register for IIOSB to get the release, but we hope you will, because you're a fine human being. (Apologies for speciesism to all the fine non-human programmers

    http://www.newtechusa.com/PPI/pressroom.asp#higher

    out there :-)

    1 Install from CVS. This is a good first step toward becoming an abbotforswt contributor!

    - Run your development workbench (devbench) with either Target Platform pointing to a WSAD build (which is how I tested), or just import org.apache.xerces (should work, but not tested).

    - Create a new CVS repository location with

    host=cvs.opensource.ibm.com
    repository path=/cvs/abbotforswt
    user=anonymous
    no password
    connection type=pserver

    and check out HEAD/abbotforswt.

    - Browse to our release notes

    http://w3.opensource.ibm.com/project/shownotes.php?release_id=597

    search or scroll to "run the demo"

    - Skip to step 4

    The demo can then be run in each of 3 ways, all of which are documented in the release notes:

    * using Test Collector in a launched WebSphere Studio build

    * using pde.junit to launch an Eclipse or WS build

    * using Eclipse's JUnit to launch just the UI

    Jeff 04/29/03 08:26:00 PM EDT

    I believe this is a forum in which comments need to be made about the article and its vaildity.

    The above messages should be in English and any concerns/comments should be made available for the benefit for all in the community

    Bhojohori Manna 04/29/03 06:00:00 AM EDT

    Chee chee, Ei rokom gala gali dile hobe.Dada koto bhalo article likheche.

    Utgandu 04/29/03 05:54:00 AM EDT

    Dada,ei jinis poisa diye keu porbe bhebechen apni?USa te theke apnio sobar moto boka patha hoye gechen .Apni ei jinista kotha theke chotha korechen?Ar apni ki GUI Master ke chenen???jobab chai,jobab dao.

    @ThingsExpo Stories
    Container frameworks, such as Docker, provide a variety of benefits, including density of deployment across infrastructure, convenience for application developers to push updates with low operational hand-holding, and a fairly well-defined deployment workflow that can be orchestrated. Container frameworks also enable a DevOps approach to application development by cleanly separating concerns between operations and development teams. But running multi-container, multi-server apps with containers is very hard. You have to learn five new and different technologies and best practices (libswarm, sy...
    SYS-CON Events announced today that DragonGlass, an enterprise search platform, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. After eleven years of designing and building custom applications, OpenCrowd has launched DragonGlass, a cloud-based platform that enables the development of search-based applications. These are a new breed of applications that utilize a search index as their backbone for data retrieval. They can easily adapt to new data sets and provide access to both structured and unstruc...
    Converging digital disruptions is creating a major sea change - Cisco calls this the Internet of Everything (IoE). IoE is the network connection of People, Process, Data and Things, fueled by Cloud, Mobile, Social, Analytics and Security, and it represents a $19Trillion value-at-stake over the next 10 years. In her keynote at @ThingsExpo, Manjula Talreja, VP of Cisco Consulting Services, will discuss IoE and the enormous opportunities it provides to public and private firms alike. She will share what businesses must do to thrive in the IoE economy, citing examples from several industry sector...
    With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo in Silicon Valley. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 17th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal an...
    All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo, June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be
    An entirely new security model is needed for the Internet of Things, or is it? Can we save some old and tested controls for this new and different environment? In his session at @ThingsExpo, New York's at the Javits Center, Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, reviewed hands-on lessons with IoT devices and reveal a new risk balance you might not expect. Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, has more than nineteen years' experience managing global security operations and assessments, including a decade of leading incident response and digital forensics. He is co-author of t...
    The Internet of Things is a misnomer. That implies that everything is on the Internet, and that simply should not be - especially for things that are blurring the line between medical devices that stimulate like a pacemaker and quantified self-sensors like a pedometer or pulse tracker. The mesh of things that we manage must be segmented into zones of trust for sensing data, transmitting data, receiving command and control administrative changes, and peer-to-peer mesh messaging. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ryan Bagnulo, Solution Architect / Software Engineer at SOA Software, focused on desi...
    Buzzword alert: Microservices and IoT at a DevOps conference? What could possibly go wrong? In this Power Panel at DevOps Summit, moderated by Jason Bloomberg, the leading expert on architecting agility for the enterprise and president of Intellyx, panelists will peel away the buzz and discuss the important architectural principles behind implementing IoT solutions for the enterprise. As remote IoT devices and sensors become increasingly intelligent, they become part of our distributed cloud environment, and we must architect and code accordingly. At the very least, you'll have no problem fil...
    While great strides have been made relative to the video aspects of remote collaboration, audio technology has basically stagnated. Typically all audio is mixed to a single monaural stream and emanates from a single point, such as a speakerphone or a speaker associated with a video monitor. This leads to confusion and lack of understanding among participants especially regarding who is actually speaking. Spatial teleconferencing introduces the concept of acoustic spatial separation between conference participants in three dimensional space. This has been shown to significantly improve comprehe...
    SYS-CON Events announced today that the "First Containers & Microservices Conference" will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City. The “Second Containers & Microservices Conference” will take place November 3-5, 2015, at Santa Clara Convention Center, Santa Clara, CA. Containers and microservices have become topics of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities.
    The 4th International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 17th International Cloud Expo - to be held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - announces that its Call for Papers is open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
    The Domain Name Service (DNS) is one of the most important components in networking infrastructure, enabling users and services to access applications by translating URLs (names) into IP addresses (numbers). Because every icon and URL and all embedded content on a website requires a DNS lookup loading complex sites necessitates hundreds of DNS queries. In addition, as more internet-enabled ‘Things' get connected, people will rely on DNS to name and find their fridges, toasters and toilets. According to a recent IDG Research Services Survey this rate of traffic will only grow. What's driving t...
    The Internet of Things promises to transform businesses (and lives), but navigating the business and technical path to success can be difficult to understand. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sean Lorenz, Technical Product Manager for Xively at LogMeIn, demonstrated how to approach creating broadly successful connected customer solutions using real world business transformation studies including New England BioLabs and more.
    Since 2008 and for the first time in history, more than half of humans live in urban areas, urging cities to become “smart.” Today, cities can leverage the wide availability of smartphones combined with new technologies such as Beacons or NFC to connect their urban furniture and environment to create citizen-first services that improve transportation, way-finding and information delivery. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Laetitia Gazel-Anthoine, CEO of Connecthings, will focus on successful use cases.
    Today’s enterprise is being driven by disruptive competitive and human capital requirements to provide enterprise application access through not only desktops, but also mobile devices. To retrofit existing programs across all these devices using traditional programming methods is very costly and time consuming – often prohibitively so. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO, President, and Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., discussed how you can create applications that run on all mobile devices as well as laptops and desktops using a visual drag-and-drop application – and eForms-buildi...
    Sensor-enabled things are becoming more commonplace, precursors to a larger and more complex framework that most consider the ultimate promise of the IoT: things connecting, interacting, sharing, storing, and over time perhaps learning and predicting based on habits, behaviors, location, preferences, purchases and more. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tom Wesselman, Director of Communications Ecosystem Architecture at Plantronics, will examine the still nascent IoT as it is coalescing, including what it is today, what it might ultimately be, the role of wearable tech, and technology gaps stil...
    One of the biggest impacts of the Internet of Things is and will continue to be on data; specifically data volume, management and usage. Companies are scrambling to adapt to this new and unpredictable data reality with legacy infrastructure that cannot handle the speed and volume of data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and president of Infobright, will discuss how companies need to rethink their data infrastructure to participate in the IoT, including: Data storage: Understanding the kinds of data: structured, unstructured, big/small? Analytics: What kinds and how responsiv...
    Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) are increasing at an unprecedented rate. The threat landscape of today is drastically different than just a few years ago. Attacks are much more organized and sophisticated. They are harder to detect and even harder to anticipate. In the foreseeable future it's going to get a whole lot harder. Everything you know today will change. Keeping up with this changing landscape is already a daunting task. Your organization needs to use the latest tools, methods and expertise to guard against those threats. But will that be enough? In the foreseeable future attacks w...
    17th Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterprises are using some form of XaaS – software, platform, and infrastructure as a service.
    Cloud is not a commodity. And no matter what you call it, computing doesn’t come out of the sky. It comes from physical hardware inside brick and mortar facilities connected by hundreds of miles of networking cable. And no two clouds are built the same way. SoftLayer gives you the highest performing cloud infrastructure available. One platform that takes data centers around the world that are full of the widest range of cloud computing options, and then integrates and automates everything. Join SoftLayer on June 9 at 16th Cloud Expo to learn about IBM Cloud's SoftLayer platform, explore se...