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Monday, May 27, 2024

Overview of Selenium and Its Architecture

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In the present application development scenario, it is almost impossible to imagine a test bench without the inclusion of proper automation testing practices. This is because the complex nature of modern app architecture is almost impossible to test without advanced testing practices. On the other hand, manual test benches can massively limit the testing capabilities of the developers and slow down the application quality verification process. Experts believe that with the proper implementation of automated testing practices, the developers can not only verify the individual performance of every element but also their combined performance. This is a very critical factor when the developers are working on applications that go through a frequent updating process. Selenium is one of the most popular names in the market of test automation.

So, with this article, we will try to elaborate on the world of Selenium automation testing. We will also take a detailed look at all the testing tools and architectures that are related to Selenium. Finally, we will conclude our discussion with some of the best tools and platforms that can help developers to perform efficient automated Selenium-based test cases. We will begin our detailed overview with a basic understanding of test automation and the Selenium test suite. 

Understanding The Ethics of Automated Testing

To understand the influence of Selenium in the world of test automation, it is very important to develop a basic idea of automated testing practices. In simple terms, we can define this process as the effort to eliminate the need to have an in-house testing team of human developers. This is because in such test cases, the system will use various test files consisting of multiple parameters and datasets that can help it to act like a normal user. In such a scenario, the system will interact with the application and based on these interactions, generate a test report. This test report will show the user interactivity and stability of the application to justify whether it is ready to be released to the open world. The developers can also change their parameters to make the test cases customized according to their requirements.

It is also possible to easily store and reuse automated test code in future app development projects. However, in the context of test automation, we must mention that this advanced testing practice comes with a massive disadvantage. This is because while implementing automation testing, the developers have to initially invest a lot of money. These investments will cover all the expenses that the company has to bear for implementing tools, libraries, and plugins that are essential for the proper functioning of the test bench. So we highly recommend that application development companies have a proper idea about their business perspectives and possible returns on investment. This set of data will help them understand whether they’re ready to make the transition into test automation.

Developing the basic Idea of Selenium

Now that we have finished discussing the basics of test automation, it is time to understand the Selenium test suite. The first myth that needs to be busted regarding Selenium is that it is not a standalone tool. Instead, it is a test suite consisting of multiple tools that can help the developers at different stages of the automated testing process. Selenium was initially introduced in the year 2004 and it has recently gone through four major updates. All these updates added various new tools to this suit for implementing its simplicity and usefulness of it. A very interesting fact about Selenium is that it was initially known as a JavaScript test runner due to its dependency on this well-known programming language.

Since its initial introduction, Selenium has managed to maintain one of the top positions in the application development industry for over 10 years. Moreover, during the initial years of test automation, Selenium had a monopoly in the market. However similar to automated testing, Selenium also has a massive disadvantage. This is because the developers can use this test suite for only initiating automated testing on web apps. This can massively isolate the development practices of a company as there are multiple different types of applications like native apps, hybrid apps, and cross-platform applications.

Now let us take a detailed look at some of the components of a Selenium test suite that play a vital role in the Selenium architecture:

  • The most important component of the Selenium test suite is the Selenium WebDriver. This is because it is not only responsible for initiating the test cases but also for redirecting them to the target elements of the web application. The Selenium WebDriver has gone through various updates since its initial introduction. It is also a superior version of the previously present Selenium remote controller. This is because it can natively communicate with all the elements of the web application.
  • The Selenium client API plays an effective role in improving the simplicity of the test case development process. This is because, with these tools, the developers can create automation test cases in their preferred languages like Ruby, Python, and Java. So before the inclusion of this tool, the developers had to go through a learning curve to write the test cases in the native Selenese language.
  • Selenium Grid helps the developers to conduct the test cases in a parallel format which helps to execute multiple test configurations at the same time. It is a very effective feature when the developers are working on complex applications consisting of thousands of different elements.
  • Finally, the Selenium integrated development environment helps the developers to efficiently create the automation test cases. This is because with this tool the developers have to use the web application like a normal user for the test case generation process. Based on the interactions, the system will continue to generate the test cases in real-time. Since these test files are generated based on real user interactions, they are highly accurate in judging the performance of the application.

Benefits of Selenium-Based Test Automation

To properly understand the influence of Selenium in the modern test automation industry, it is very important to have a general idea about all the benefits of using Selenium-based automation testing. Based on our research and understanding, some of the major advantages of this process are as follows:

  • Selenium is based on an open-source architecture, the developers do not have to invest any money for accessing all the features available with this test automation suite. So it is a very appealing option for all the new developers and small companies that cannot afford to invest in the business right away.
  • Selenium also has a massive community of tech lovers who are always working hard to improve the testing experience with this automation test suite. This community also helps newcomers whenever they are stuck with any test case using Selenium. So this welcoming nature of Selenium makes it best suited for developers who are starting to make the transition.
  • Since Selenium is one of the oldest players in the market, it has one of the widest support for multiple browsers and operating systems. So it means that while using Selenium-based automation testing, the developers will not face any compatibility issues that can reduce their test coverage.
  • It is also possible to integrate various third-party libraries and dependencies with Selenium to further improve the efficiency and dependability of the automation test cases. Moreover, with these features, the developers can also improve the overall quality of the application that is undergoing the development process.
  • While using Selenium-based automation testing, the developers can use advanced testing practices like agile methodologies. With these practices, app-developing companies can improve the coordination between the application development, testing, and even the business teams of the company. This is a very efficient practice that helps to massively reduce the overall testing cycle. This is because with this process the development and testing process can be conducted side-by-side. 

Integration of Platforms and Tools with Selenium Based Test Automation

As we already discussed earlier, test automation can be complex and confusing for new developers. However, there are hundreds of tools easily available in the market that can help to simplify this process. For instance, the developers can use cloud platforms to eliminate the hassle and expense of having an onsite physical device lab. These labs are often impossible to maintain for individual creators and small companies as they lack the resources. On the other hand, cloud platforms help developers to achieve similar testing results while initiating and conducting all the test cases over the Internet. We can improve our knowledge about the influence of cloud platforms on the modern app development market by bringing LamdaTest as a reference:

To introduce LambdaTest to the new automation testers, we can see that it is a modern platform to efficiently conduct cross-browser testing on all web apps. Considering the state of the market, we can safely say that cross-browser testing is a necessary practice that helps to ensure that you provide the best services to your customers. This is because, with proper cross-browser test cases, the developers can ensure the application maintains its stability irrespective of random shifts in browser version, operating system edition, or device hardware specifications. This platform also has various advanced features like parallel test execution to improve the efficiency of the testing process.

LambdaTest can also import the test cases from not only Selenium but also other popular automation frameworks like Cypress and playwright. It is worth informing the readers that while working with Selenium test cases, the developers can efficiently execute them on more than 3000 different browser editions side-by-side. Moreover, the integration of real devices with existing thousands of simulation softwares helps to massively improve the accuracy and dependability of the test results. LambdaTest is also efficient for using Selenium-based automation testing on local web apps for internal company operations.

The Conclusion

The primary motive of this article was to spread general awareness regarding Selenium and its code-testing architecture. This is very important knowledge that can help the developers not only customize their test benches but also to utilize their full potential. Because we are slowly moving towards a testing industry that will be completely dominated by test automation, this is very critical information. We also recommend that automation testers keep their knowledge updated regarding all the automation testing practices. In this segment, app-developing companies can also take exponential steps to spread all the relevant information regarding Selenium and automation testing in general. Lastly, the developers must choose the perfect automation tool that can complement their development requirements and preferences. 

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