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GUI Testing is the process of ensuring that the application’s graphical user interface works as expected. It entails inspecting application elements like buttons, icons, checkboxes, color, menus, and windows, among other things. The visual dynamics of a web application are critical in determining whether or not a user would accept it.

  • It is performed to verify the functionality of GUI as per the specifications given by the user.
  • It helps to evaluate the controls like menus, buttons, icons, lists, text boxes, layouts, color, font, etc.
  • It can be performed manually or automatically.
  • It helps to verify that different icons and elements adhere to the design criteria.
  • It helps to increase the product’s quality and dependability.

The following components should be checked while GUI testing:

  • Navigations.
  • Screen validations.
  • Font and alignment of text.
  • Progress bars.
  • Required fields.
  • Date and numeric fields.
  • Error messages.

Need to Automate GUI Testing

  • Rerun regression tests: In case of UI changes, regression tests need to be executed again. Automating the process to update the test cases and rerun them reduces the total work and effort.
  • Increase test coverage: Automating GUI testing helps to increase test coverage significantly.
  • Faster execution: Test execution is faster in the case of automated UI testing as compared to manual testing.
  • Not prone to human error: Automated UI testing is not prone to human error like manual testing.
  • Time and cost-effective: Automated GUI testing is time and cost-effective as the same tests can be reused.

Approaches for GUI Testing

There are 3 approaches for GUI Testing:

  1. Manual testing: In manual testing, a human tester will use his knowledge to test the functions of the application and check whether the graphical components conform to the documented requirements.
  2. Record-and-Playback testing: This is done using automation tools. In this type of testing the automation tools records, all the interaction with the application, and then these recorded steps are reproduced, executed, and compared with the expected behaviour. 
  3. Model-Based testing: In this type of testing the focus is on building the graphical models of the system as per the system behaviour. These models help the tester to understand the system in a better way and generate highly efficient test cases. It works as follows:
    • Build a model for the system.
    • Determine the system inputs.
    • Verify the expected output.
    • Execute tests.
    • Check and validate system output with expected output.

Challenges of GUI Testing

  • Challenging in case of upgrades: GUI testing is challenging to do when the user interface is updated frequently, new features are added.
  • Time-consuming: GUI testing is time-consuming activity when the tester is not utilizing the correct tool for executing tests.
  • Difficult to update test scripts: When the developer makes changes to the user interface in that case it is difficult to update test scripts.
  • Fixing problem is difficult: Fixing problems during testing becomes difficult as when executing extensive GUI tests, testers invest a lot of time in developing scripts.
  • Delay in the delivery process: In case of UI changes, the tests also change thus delaying the delivery of the software product.
  • Handling multiple errors: Handling multiple errors becomes a tedious job in large projects with complex scenarios.
  • Image comparison: While UI testing on a website it is very critical to handle pixel variations in size, color, and other formats should be done carefully.
  • ROI calculation difficult: In UI testing, when there are changes in UI, the test scripts should also be changed. This makes it difficult to calculate the ROI while continuously performing the UI tests.

Best Practices for GUI Testing

Below are some of the best practices for GUI testing:

  • Choose the right UI automation tool: It is important to choose the right automation tool that easily integrates into your workflow and that also provides options to record and playback the modules.
  • Choose common UI elements: It is preferred that the developer chooses common UI elements so that it becomes easier for testers to understand them quickly.
  • Prefer codeless automation testing tools: It is preferred that codeless UI automation tools are selected as it eases the process of script maintenance and saves time and cost.
  • Do not rely only on UI test Automation: It is considered a best practice that using higher-level tests like UI test automation should be only the third defence shield for detecting all the issues that were not detected on the first two levels.
  • Do not run all tests across all target browsers: Running all tests across all browsers is redundant and unnecessary. Browser-compatibility testing can be conducted by a limited test suite that has tests that interact with all web elements and perform all main workflows at least once.

This article focuses on discussing the top 10 GUI testing tools. The following are some of the GUI testing tools:

  1. Eggplant
  2. AutoIT
  3. CubicTest
  4. Katalon Studio
  5. TestComplete
  6. RAPISE by Inflectra
  7. Ranorex Studio
  8. Squish
  9. FitNesse
  10. RIATest

Let’s start discussing these tools in detail.

1. Eggplant

Test Plant’s Eggplant is a graphical user interface test automation tool. It’s a tool that’s been granted permission to be used. Eggplant may be coupled with the microfocus quality center, Jenkins, and IBM rotating quality management to carry out the end-to-end testing process. It will use a two-system approach, with the controller computer hosting scripts and the SUT (system under test) running on the VNC server. TestPlant’s eggPlant Functional Testing tool is an automated app testing and debugging tool. Users can create automated functionality tests and debugging protocols that focus on the performance of the app’s GUI rather than manually checking the functionality of built applications.

Key Features:

  • It works with Windows, Linux, and Mac OS systems.
  • It covers everything from cutting-edge, highly dynamic websites to ancient back-office systems, as well as point-of-sale and command-and-control systems.
  • It can test a variety of devices, including browsers, operating systems, and anything from user interfaces to APIs and databases.

2. AutoIT

AutoIt is a free and open-source automation language for Windows. In order to do user interface testing, AutoIt employs a combination of simulated keystrokes, mouse movement, and window manipulation.AutoIt is a free, open-source automation language for Windows. It’s a scripting computer language that’s similar to BASIC and is used to automate the Microsoft Windows user interface. To perform user interface testing, AutoIt employs a combination of simulated keystrokes, mouse movement, and window manipulation.AutoIt scripts can be turned into a compressed and standalone executable that can be launched on systems without the AutoIt interpreter installed. AutoIt also has an integrated development environment (IDE) based on the SciTE editor. The compiler and help text are combined, allowing developers to work in a consistent environment. 

Key Features:

  • It will run as a console application and connect to the normal streams.
  • It will give you the Add-on libraries and modules you need for your specific application.
  • It’s used to control the appearance of windows and processes.
  • It will include the data files in the compiled files, which will be extracted when the program is started.
  • It will help the COM (component object model).

3. CubicTest

CubicTest is an open-source Eclipse plugin that assists in the design and understanding of web applications, regardless of the user’s technical skills. It allows test-driven development of web applications by using GUI for model testing rather than test scripts. CubicTest case designs take the place of requirement specs and human test scripts.

Key Features:

  • It is well-known for creating web-based tests that make test execution faster and easier.
  • Another noteworthy aspect of the CubicTestplug-in is its ability to create more robust, dependable, consistent, and reusable tests for successful test execution.
  • The designated spaces for keeping track of the web page advancement and state transitions are included in the tool’s graphical user interface.
  • It supports all of the most popular web application development platforms, from classic approaches to cutting-edge technology like Ajax.

4. Katalon Studio

Katalon Studio is an all-in-one automation solution used by over 850,000 teams and enterprises to simplify Web UI, API, mobile, and desktop testing. For people with or without coding skills, flexible test creation with a dual-editor interface is available (Java and Groovy supported). Multiple location algorithms help you adapt to UI changes in real-time. Object locators with a self-healing mechanism. For faster feedback, Chrome and Firefox have headless browser execution functionality. Self-healing mechanisms, data-driven testing, and the page-object model design pattern can all help you save time on maintenance. After each run, generate reports with eye-catching graphics and real-time notifications (Slack, Git& Microsoft Teams).

Key Features:

  • Test artifacts such as test cases, test suites, test objects, reports, and other test artifacts have a pre-defined structure that helps testers save time while designing and managing them.
  • Custom keywords allow for the flexible incorporation of extra keywords in order to effectively test the AUT for the category and involute testing.
  • Web, Mobile, and API testing are all supported.
  • With test suite aggregation, you’ll be able to run numerous test suites at once.
  • With console mode execution, it’s easy to extend the existing CI flow. Using the ‘Generate Command Line for Console Mode’ option, you may conveniently execute the command line.

5. TestComplete

TestComplete is a GUI test automation tool that tests every desktop, web, and mobile application openly integrates within the SDLC ecosystem, is used by both technical and non-technical users. Delivers the quality of your application with incredible scale and efficiency.SmartBear Software’s TestComplete is a fully comprehensive automated testing platform. TestComplete allows testers to write automated tests for Microsoft Windows, Web, Android, and iOS applications. With keyword-driven activities, tests can be recorded, written, or manually constructed and used for automated playback and error recording.

Key Features:

  • Use record & playback, or script in your preferred modern language to create code or codeless tests (including JavaScript, Python, and VBScript).
  • Complex objects are identified with superior object identification utilizing machine learning and AI.
  • Enterprise software such as SAP, Oracle EBS, and Salesforce include support for testing.
  • For continuous testing and delivery, run functional UI tests in parallel in the cloud or on your local PC.
  • Integrates tightly with your ecosystem’s technologies, including CI/CD, test management, issue tracking, and version control, to provide a full testing lifecycle.

6. RAPISE By Inflectra

Rapise is a cross-browser test automation tool that doesn’t require any scripting. It has the ability to test desktop, mobile, online (with Selenium support), Java applications, and APIs (REST and SOAP). Rapise IDE makes it simple for automation engineers to design tests, make changes, detect bugs, and deploy the tests across all environments. This automation platform has powerful learning and tracking modules that can handle even the most difficult applications. Rapise comes with a testing API that provides methods for manipulating photos, spreadsheets, and basic GUI widgets, among other things. Rapise makes it quick and easy to learn by using standard JavaScript and basic libraries. It also comes with an increasing number of custom libraries for testing a variety of major applications, such as Microsoft Dynamics/CRM, SAP, and Salesforce. Rapise offers data-driven testing, which entails repeating the same test with different sets of data thousands of times. A scriptless keyword-driven framework is included in Rapise v6.

Key Features:

  • RAPISE may perform many automated tests across multiple workstations, allowing for distributed testing.
  • Record and playback test: It records the important actions needed to repeat the test and rejects the actions that aren’t required.
  • RAPISE’s Test Visualizer allows you to automatically take screenshots during test execution and playback. This enables you to quickly compare predicted and real screens during the test.
  • Scripted testing: RAPISE includes a built-in code editor that assists testers in manually writing scripts. You can either create new test scripts or edit existing ones.
  • Access to internal object methods and properties: RAPISE reads the names of numerous internal elements of.NET, Java, Visual Basic applications, Delphi, and other visible elements, as well as other visible elements.

7. Ranorex Studio

Ranorex Studio is a commercial Windows GUI test automation tool that has been used by over 4000 firms across the world to test desktop, online, and mobile applications. With a codeless click-and-go interface and helpful wizards, it’s simple for novices, but it’s powerful for automation professionals with a full IDE. Here is a list of all the technologies that are supported. In a single license, Ranorex Studio provides testers with a complete toolkit for end-to-end testing of desktop, web, and mobile apps.

Key Features:

  • Cross-platform testing is a powerful feature of Ranorex. After the test cases have been built, they can be run on a variety of mobile devices, including Android and iPhone.
  • It provides a dependable user interface object identification model that is entirely based on Ranorex XPath technology.
  • It includes a series of tools that enable users to automate UI testing by recording UI activities without having to write any code.
  • It has a spy engine that records information about each and every user interface element on the application’s screen. Its object recognition capability assists the user in identifying the application’s UI elements.

8. Squish

It is a commercial cross-platform GUI testing tool developed by Froglogic that is used to test applications using a variety of GUI technologies such as Flex, Android, JavaFX, Qt, and others. It will run on Windows, Linux, Android, iOS, and QNX, among other operating systems. We may execute the sets of scripts and analyze the whole logging and performance data using the Squish tool.

Key Features:

  • It will be used to verify and validate test results.
  • It is powerful and comes with a built-in test creation environment.
  • Squish had the ability to record and replay.
  • It will facilitate behavior-driven programming and be compatible with the Gherkin language.
  • It is used to map and identify the things which assist us to develop reliable and resilient test scripts.
  • Advanced verification options for elements and groups of controls will be available.

9. FitNesse

FitNesse is a software testing solution that combines a web server, a wiki, and an automated testing tool. It is based on Ward Cunningham’s Framework for Integrated Test and is intended to enable acceptance testing rather than unit testing by allowing for a full and accessible description of system functionality.

Key Features:

  • FitNesse is an open-source Collaborative Acceptance Testing framework. Capable of interacting with an app on one or more devices.
  • It is a lightweight tool that assists in determining what software should do and what it actually does. It can run on a PC or a server and comes with everything you need.

10. RIATest

It’s another graphical user interface (GUI) testing tool for Adobe Flex applications, and it supports Flex 2, Flex 3, Flex 4, and AIR apps. It’s a licensed utility that allows you to modify error handling, throw an exception, or log an error. It will highlight the syntax, making our test scripts easier to create and understand.

Key Features:

  • RIATest is a graphical user interface (GUI) test automation tool for Flex, HTML, JavaScript, jQuery, and Windows 8 apps.
  • To swiftly identify bugs, RIATest has been incorporated into the continuous integration system.
  • Aids in the creation of a comprehensible test script by utilizing the component inspector to identify GUI elements.
  • It’s a paid utility that lets you personalize how you handle errors by reporting them or throwing exceptions.


Last Updated : 11 Oct, 2023
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