Katalon Automation Recorder (Selenium IDE Alternative): Hands-on Review Tutorial

Hands-on review Tutorial – Katalon Automation Recorder (Selenium IDE for Chrome and Firefox):

Are you worried because your automation testing work has been hampered as Selenium IDE has stopped working from Firefox 55 onwards? Well, don’t be worried as we have some good news for you.

The Katalon Studio team has recently introduced Katalon Automation Recorder that has been developed for the users who are no longer able to continue the automation testing using obsolete Selenium IDE.

It can be added as an extension in Firefox and Chrome and supported by the latest versions of these browsers (and will be supported by the upcoming versions as well). This tool is a perfect alternative for the Selenium IDE and other similar open source frameworks.

Katalon Automation Recorder tutorial

It is a very handy and powerful test steps recorder which is ported from Selenium IDE to Chrome and Firefox with major functions preserved.

Selenium IDE Vs Katalon Automation Recorder

In the below figure, you can observe that all the features that were presented in Selenium IDE are also available in this Katalon tool.

In fact, this Katalon tool has two more export languages – Robot Framework and Katalon Studio. It is also compatible with the Groovy programming language.

Katalon Automation recorder Vs Selenium IDE

This tool is a great help for the teams who have been depended heavily on Selenium IDE. It has a powerful IDE to record, debug and play tests in Chrome & Firefox browser.

Katalon Automation Recorder Installation

Below are the links to download Katalon Automation Recorder for both Chrome & Firefox:

It is very easy and quick to get this tool installed. I will show you how:

Add to Firefox

You just need to click the ‘Add to Firefox’ button as seen in the above screenshot and the Katalon Recorder will appear on your Firefox toolbar in a jiffy (it will not take more than 10 seconds to get installed).

Katalon on Firefox

And this is how it looks:

Katalon Automation Recorder 1

A quick demo

Click on the ‘New’ button and provide the test case name in the dialog box. Then, Click ‘OK’

Katalon Recorder demo test case

Click on ‘Add’ button and give the command you want to get executed:

Add button

In the Reference section as seen above, you will get the details of what the particular command does.

Similarly, give subsequent commands to complete your test case:

give commands

Once completed, click on the ‘Play’ button to execute the test case.

click on Play

As seen in the above screenshot, the steps executed successfully are turned into green and the execution info along with Test case passed/ failed status has appeared in the Console area.

Main features

#1) With this tool, you can capture the web elements and record the actions performed on the web app. It allows you to create (new test cases), edit (existing test cases) and play automated test cases. And, all this can be done very fast and easily.

#2) All the Selenese commands are supported by this tool.

#3) Existing Selenium IDE tests can be imported into Katalon Recorder (using Script mode) and can be exported to below languages & frameworks:

LanguageCorresponding Framework
GroovyKatalon Studio
JavaWebDriver + TestNG
JavaWebDriver + Junit
JavaWebDriver-backend Remote Control + Junit
Robot Framework
C#WebDriver + Nunit
RubyWebDriver + Rspec
Python2WebDriver + unittest

#4) This tool is compatible with latest versions of Firefox and Chrome browsers.

#5) It works on Selenium 3 core engine.

#6) Multiple test cases can be combined and arranged inside a test suite and can be executed as a complete test suite.

#7) Test cases can be imported into Katalon Studio – a completely free automation testing solution which is key- driven and data-driven, supports TDD/BDD Testing, API Testing, Page Object Model, test management, test case recording, advanced scripting, parallel execution, CI integrations and much more!

#8) Allows not only Katalon Studio users but also users of the obsolete Selenium IDE and other popular open source frameworks to record and playback automation tests.

Features discussed in detail

#1) Toolbar: The toolbar consists of 6 buttons namely New, Record, Play, Export, Help, and Settings:

Toolbar


  • New: Clicking on this button will allow you to add a new test case inside the test suite.
  • Record: This will let you record the test steps.
  • Play: This button is to execute the existing test case.
  • Export: Clicking on this button taken you to the script mode where you can choose the Language & Framework. By default, ‘Katalon Studio’ is selected.

Export

Here you can save the script. Clicking on Save As File button in the above screenshot will allow you to save the script as a Groovy file.

Save script as Groovy file

You can also observe here that corresponding to the commands you gave on the front end, you have got the code generated here:

code generated

This is similar to the ‘Source’ section which we had in Selenium IDE.

You can switch to different Languages & Frameworks below:

switch to different Languages & Frameworks

Changing the Language & Framework will automatically change your code in the script accordingly:

change your code

  • Help: This will take you to the Katalon Automation Recorder User Guide page where various features are explained in detailed.
  • Settings: This will take you to the port and configuration setting.

#2) Test Case Explorer:

Test Case Explorer

Test case explorer contains test suites.  In a test suite, you can have multiple test cases.

Right-clicking on Test case gives you three options – ‘Add New Test Case’, ‘Remove Test Case’, and ‘Rename Test Case’.

Test case

Right-clicking on Test Suite gives you six options – ‘Open Test Suites’, ‘Add New Test Suite’, ‘Save Test Suite As’, ‘Close Test Suite’, ‘Add New Test Case’, and ‘Rename Test Suite’.

#3) Test Case Window:

Test Case Window

This area allows you to add, delete, edit and execute test steps. Each test step contains Command, Target, and Value.  You can also drag and drop to change the order of test steps.

#4) Console & Reference:

Reference

Console

Limitations

Along with all the above-discussed pros, there are certain cons as well which I observed in the tool.

For example:

  • There are certain commands which are experimental as of now. For example, ‘sendKeys’ command is experimental. In the future, this might get replaced with typeKeys command. So, we will have to update our test scripts accordingly in future in case we are using any experimental commands.
  • The option to specify base URL is also not presented anywhere on the tool. This was a useful option in Selenium IDE allowing test cases to be run across different domains.
  • In Firefox, I found the ‘Settings’ button missing on the toolbar of Katalon Recorder:

Settings button missing

There are only 5 buttons present here as compared to 6 buttons in Chrome.

  • There are certain other bugs as well which are presented in the tool. Visit Katalon Automation Recorder Bugs and Suggestions section to check more on existing issues & their suggested resolutions.

Explore more about this tool:

Check here a quick getting started guide to Katalon Automation Recorder.

Takeaways

  • This tool can be installed very easily and quickly.
  • This tool is absolutely free.
  • Easy to use. The Reference section is very helpful as it tells you in detail about how each command works and when it should be used.
  • Multiple languages & frameworks support make this tool more useful.
  • Almost all the features that were present in Selenium IDE are preserved in this tool.
  • In fact, I could see few new commands added which were not available in Selenium IDE. This makes Automation Recorder even more powerful.
  • This tool is a benefit for the testing teams which relied heavily on Selenium IDE for their automation testing work.
  • Found this better than other substitutes for Selenium IDE. For example, unlike Kantu for Chrome, Katalon Recorder supports all the commands that were there in Selenium IDE.
  • Compatible with latest Firefox and Chrome browsers and will be supported in upcoming versions as well.
  • A few small bugs exist in the tool. However, these bugs they stand nowhere at front of the great features, ease of use & the capabilities offered by this tool.

Overall, Katalon Automation Recorder is a great tool for automation testing and a perfect substitute for Selenium IDE. Try this free tool and let us know your queries here.




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7 comments ↓

#1 Selenium IDE fan

Great news! I’ve been waiting for this stuff so long, thanks.

#2 Vajid Mulla

thanks, excited to try this out !!

#3 Sudhir

Perfect option for IDE.

#4 PRAJAKTA

Hey Vijay,
Thanks for the article.It was very helpful.

#5 Devi M

Sir , Actually i don’t have coding knowledge…but am trying to learn some IT related work..to get into the IT field. Which one i have to learn first..i don’t which is the root, which one to choose.

#6 Peter Parker

@Devi – learn Java first. Take a Java class. It is best to have an understanding of a well-used programming language before embarking on a career in automated software testing.

Once you understand the Java basics, then try Katalon. You will see it simplifies test creation, but you still need those Java fundamentals to truly understand how the testing works (under the covers) and to feel confident fixing any breakages.

Enjoy your new career and never stop learning.

#7 Christina M.

Great extension!
Yes, I’m missing the option to specify base URL too.
But it’s great enough. Couldn’t expect more.

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