A Layman’s Guide to TestLink Test Management Tool – TestLink Tutorial #1

This is a complete guide to start using the most popular open source test management tool – TestLink.

Learn how to quickly set up and start using TestLink Test Management Tool with these in-depth TestLink Tutorials.

Editors’ Note – If you are still using MS Excel spreadsheets for tracking test cases and execution, this is the best time for you to switch to a Test Management tool. And for that reason we have selected the long-time popular open source test management tool. Try it!

We have divided this TestLink Tutorials series in 3 parts:

Here is the list of all the tutorials in this series:

TestLink Tutorial #1) TestLink introduction, installation and creating Test Plan and Test Cases
TestLink Tutorial #2) Requirements management, Test execution and generating test reports
TestLink Tutorial #3) Updating test case execution status remotely i.e. through Selenium WebDriver code using TestLink API (Advanced concepts)
TestLink Tutorial #4) Test Metrics, Keyword Management, Custom Fields and Test Report Charts

TestLink Tutorials

Let’s start with 1st part in this series.

What is covered in Tutorial #1:

  • Introduction to TestLink
  • Benefits
  • TestLink Installation
  • Creating Test Project
  • Creating Test Plan
  • Creating Build
  • Creating Test Suite
  • Creating Test Case
  • Assigning Test Case to Test plan
  • Conclusion

Introduction to TestLink

This is most widely used web based open source test management tool. It integrates both requirements specification and Test specification together. User can create test projects and document test cases using this tool. We can create account for multiple users/testers and assign different user roles. Admin user can manage test cases assignment task.

It supports both manual and automated execution of Test cases. With this tool the testers can generate Test Report and Test Plan Documents within a minute. It supports generation of Test reports in MS Word, Excel and HTML formats.

TestLink also support integration with many popular Defect Tracking systems like Mantis, BugZilla, Jira, Youtrack and TRAC. We can link a specific bug ticket with test cases. It also support and maintain multiple Test projects. Since it is a web based tool, multiple users can access its functionality at the same time with their credentials and assigned roles.

Benefits of TestLink

  • Supports Multiple Projects.
  • Easy Test Cases import or export.
  • Easy to integrate with many defect management tools.
  • Automated Test cases execution through XML-RPC.
  • Easy to filter test cases with keywords, version and Testcase ID.
  • Can provide credentials to multiple users and assign roles to them.
  • Easy to assign test cases to multiple users.
  • Easy to generate Test plan and Test reports in various formats.

TestLink Installation

Important Note: If you want to try your hand at TestLink demo before installing or using it for your project, head to below demo page. All features are available in this online latest demo version:

=>Go to TestLink Online Demo here.
Login name: admin
Password: admin

TestLink demo


  1. Apache Web server
  2. PHP
  3. MySQL

Note: If you have System Admin assigned for your project you can ask sysadmin to install this for your project and skip directly to “Creating a Test Project” step. (If you have time to do these installations I will suggest try your hand at it. This will add to your experience. :) )

To install TestLink, You need to install Apache web server, PHP and MySQL server. If your system or server already has Apache, PHP and MySQL installed then you can directly install this tool as mentioned in “Installation of TestLink” section below.

Otherwise, follow below steps one by one to install Apache, PHP, and MySQL first.

Installation of Apache:

This section contains steps to be followed to install Apache web server.

Step – 1
Download Apache from here.

Step – 2
Extract the Zip file to C:/

Step- 3
Copy C:\Apache24\bin path and append this with path environment variable.

Step – 4
Open Command Prompt. (Run as administrator)
cd to C:/Apache24/bin and run the following commands one by one
httpd -k install
httpd -k start

Installation of PHP

This section contains steps to be followed to install PHP and configuring PHP with Apache.

Step – 1
Download php from this page (thread is safe).
Extract this to C:\php

Step – 2
Rename php.ini-development to php.ini

Step -3
Add C:\php\ to path environment variable.

Step -4
Edit php.ini and add/edit the following lines,
display_errors =On
log_erros = On
doc_root = C:/Apache24/htdocs
extension_dir = “C:/php/ext”

Step – 5
Edit httpd.conf and add/edit the following lines,
LoadModule php5_module “C:/php/php5apache2_4.dll”
AddType application/x-httpd-php .php .html .php4 .php5

At the end of httpd.conf file add,
PHPIniDir “C:/php”

Step – 6
Create a file named phpinfo.php inside C:/Apache24/htdocs & add the following line inside the file.
<?php phpinfo();?>

Step – 7
Copy php-mysql.dll in C:/php/ext and put it inside C:/Windows/System32

Step – 8
Restart Apache.

Installation of MySQL

This section contains steps to be followed to install MySQL.

Step – 1
Download MySQL from this page and install it.

Step – 2
Create a Database named “testlink” in your MySQL server.

Step -3
In php.ini uncomment MySQL extension.
And set date time zone as “PRC”.

Installation of TestLink

This section contains steps to be followed to install TestLink in Apache web server.

Step – 1
Download TestLink from this page.

Step – 2
Extract the package, rename it to “testlink” and put it inside “C:/Apache24/htdocs

Step – 3
Edit config.inc.php and edit the following lines,
$tlCfg->log_path = ‘C:/Apache24/htdocs/testlink/logs/’;
$tlCfg->config_check_warning_mode = ‘SILENT’;
$g_repositoryPath = ‘C:/Apache24/htdocs/testlink/upload_area’;

Save the changes, and open http://localhost:80/testlink from the browser.
Click “next” button until installation completed.

Step – 4
Now you can log in to TestLink By accessing http://localhost:80/testlink.
Username: admin
Password: admin

Note: If you want screenshots for these installation steps please check this installation guide

Creating a Test Project

Test Project is a project created for a specific product/project. It contains Test plans, Test suites, Test cases and Builds. We can maintain multiple projects in TestLink.

This section clearly explains how to create a Test project:

Step-1: Creating a new Test Project requires “admin” rights. (So login with admin user)

Step-2: When logging for first time, it will directly navigate to Test project creation page. Otherwise select “Test Project Management” link on main page and click on “Create” button.

Step-3: Test Project section will be opened. Click on “Create” button.

Step-4: Enter Test Project name, description and all the required fields and click on “Create” button.

[Click to enlarge image]


TestLink 1

Test project should be created successfully.

Creating Test plan

Test plan document contains complete information like scope of testing, milestones, test suites and test cases. Once you’ve created a Test Project, Next step is creating a Test plan.

This section clearly explains creating Test plan:

Step-1: Click on “Test Plan Management” link on the desktop page.

Step-2: Click on “Create” button on the test plan management page.

Step-3: Enter all the required details in the page.

TestLink 2

Step-4: Click on “Create” button. It should be saved.

Build Creation

Build is a specific release of software.

This section clearly explains how to create a build:

Step-1: Click on “Builds/Releases” as shown in figure.

Step-2: Click on “create” button.

Step-3: Enter the details about the build as shown in below figure and click on “Create” button.

TestLink 3

Build should be created and saved.

Creating Testsuite

Testsuite is a collection of test cases that may be validating/testing same component. This section clearly explains how to create a testsuite. Follow the below steps one by one to create a Testsuite.

Step-1: Click on “Test specification” link on the Desktop. It should navigate to the Test specification page of the Project.

Step-2: Click on the settings icon TestLink 4 on the right side panel. It will display a series of Test suite operations.

Step-3: Click on create button for the Test suite.

TestLink 5

Step-4: Test suite specification page should be opened. Fill the details related to Test suite and click “Create Test suite” button.

TestLink 6

Test suite will be created and appear on the left side, folder tree structure.

Creating a Testcase

Testcase contains a sequence of test steps to test a specific scenario, with expected result. This section explains how to create a testcase along with test steps. Follow the below steps one by one to create Test cases.

Step-1: Click on the Test suite folder on the left side tree structure

TestLink 7

Step-2: Click on the settings icon TestLink 4 in the right side panel. List of Test case operations will be displayed on the right side panel.

TestLink 8

Step-3: Click on Test case “Create” button. It will open Test case specification page.

Step-4: Enter details in the Test case specification page.

TestLink 9

Step-5: After entering the details, click on “Create” button. It will save the test case.

Step-6: Now click on the “Create steps” button in test case. It will show test case step editor.

Step-7: Start adding the Test steps as shown in the picture.

TestLink 10

Step-8: Click “Save” button to add further steps, or click “Save & exit” button to save step and exit from the editor.

Finally, test case we just created will look like this: [Click to enlarge image]

TestLink 11

Assigning Testcase to Test Plan

To Execute a Test case, it should be assigned to a Test plan. This section describes how to assign a testcase to a Test Plan. Follow the below mentioned steps to assign a test case to a Test Plan.

Step-1: Click on the settings icon  on the test case panel. It will display list of operations.

Step-2: Click on “Add to TestPlans” button.

TestLink 12

Step-3: Click on the check box of test plan, to which you want to assign the test case. And then click on “Add” button.

TestLink 13

Test case will be successfully added to the Test Plan.

That’s all for today.

Recap of what we learned in this tutorial:

  • TestLink provides various functionality integrated such as documenting and executing test cases, Test report and Test plan generation.
  • Multiple users with multiple roles can be defined in TestLink.
  • It is a web based test management tool, so everyone in the organization can browse test cases if they have valid login credentials.
  • Test reports can be easily generated in HTML, MS DOC or Excel format.
  • We can export all the test suites & Test cases and can import it to some other projects. This is very useful if we want to reuse existing test cases for next project versions.

Due to these useful features TestLink is widely used and it has been the most popular open source test management tool since long.

About author: Thanks to Anitha Eswari for helping us to craft these useful tutorials. She is currently working as a senior test engineer having sound knowledge on manual and automation testing and various test management tools.

What Next?

In 2nd and 3rd parts of this series we will see how to manage requirements, map test cases to requirements, execute test cases manually, link defects, and generate test reports. In advanced part we will see how to use Selenium WebDriver to update test cases automatically using TestLink API and save time and money which are important factors for the success of any project. :)

As usual, we are here to help you. Let us know your queries in comments below.


#1 Prashant Sharma

superb step by step guide. looks very easy to use tool. we will switch to this as we are using spreadsheets for tracking test cases as well as defects :(

#2 Siddhant Raut

thank you for helping us to improve our productivity with this Testlink…

#3 Suvarna

Very good sharing
Thank you so much


Excellent !!!! thanks for sharing

#5 Mayur Mehta

Very useful tool and as usual very well Explain.

#6 Mijjo

Can you please tell me the location of “config.inc.php”

#7 Anitha Eswari

@Mijjo – You can find “config.inc.php” file inside Extracted Testlink Folder.

#8 Swetha

Thanks Anitha for this very informative article…I will be looking forward for the next tutorials on this series..

#9 Khader Khan

Excellent Step by step instructions. Thanks Anitha proved “Information is Wealth”

#10 swati

@ Vijay

Do we require design documents for the preparation of test cases?

#11 Tanaya

I’m using test link for first time using this tutorial. Thanks. Keep up the good you are doing.

#12 Anija

Actually, we started using test link. But its manually, we are entering the test cases. We installed the test link, in a VMmachine. When we create a test case, or try to do something, it will be down. Shall I know the minimum memory/ requirements for running the test link in a VMmachine

#13 Parul

Hi Anitha,

I am not able to get this button “Add to TestPlans” in test case panel , on demo link. Can you pls put more light on this?


#14 Dilip

how can i navigate to 2nd tutorial of test link…i do not see any link

#15 Farzaneh

Thanks, this tools is so useful.

#16 Dilip Pal

how can i navigate to 3rd tutorial of test link…i do not see any link

#17 Jai

Step – 1
Download php from this page (thread is safe).
Extract this to C:\php..

During step 1 execution (php download), am facing The page cannot be found issue.. Please help me out..

#18 nnguyen

it is a sketchy article.

#19 Anitha Eswari

@Jai: Use this link to download PHP


download thread safe one..

#20 Roopesh

Excellent Information ,Thanks for Sharing ….

#21 gaurav khurana

Good to know such open source tools and thank you for all the details shared

#22 Rahul

You can also use some third party like XAMPP.
It provides the complete bundle of mysql, php and apache and is comparatively easier to install. It will save a lot of your time. Being said that, process given here is thorough, and is the way you should do it. But if by any means you are not able to, you can use XAMPP.

#23 Nitish

Thank you for provide good information but i am new in selenium so Can you start new tutorial for selenium.

Like you are provide complete tutorial for software testing and qtp etc.

#24 Vishruth

Hi Vijay,
Our team is using TestLink for Test Management and your tutorial helped us more.
-> Where can we create/upload TEST CASE SCENARIO on TestLink?

Note: On Test Report section we get option like ‘Select the top line in tree menu for all or a specific element to generate a document content.’ there we can find option ‘Test Case Scenario’, but we don’t know where do we upload/ create them,
Please help us with this.

#25 Anitha Eswari

Hello Vishruth,

Test Report section is to produce Test Reports only, TO create / upload Test Scenario, you need to go to “Test Specification” section.

Where, you can create Test suites and within that you can create testcases.

#26 Vishruth

Hello Anitha Eswari,
Thank you for your valuable reply,
I have knowledge about how to create test cases, but my question is ‘How to Create Test Scenarios?’ on TestLink.

Please help with this.

#27 Pradeep Kumar

Very good explanation , very useful for us.

#28 Somesh

I used Xampp server to install Testlink but.
I cant find lines to edit, in config file.
some how i tried to change the lines(except the middle one, which i cant find) but on opening the testlink on localhost it showed 404 error.
I have checked almost all online help. But not able to install teslink.
PLease help.

#29 somesh

I got the answer to all my problems.
Actually I was using the latest version of testlink.

Anyways, thankx to all.

#30 pbasu

Even I am not able to see ‘Add to test plan’ option.
Pl advise asap

#31 pawan singh

Hello guys. Just an alternative to installation process where in we need to install MySQL, PHP and Apache separately, I would rather suggest to install xampp which will automatically include Apache, MySQL, FileZilla, Mercury & Tomcat.

#32 ozgur ozfirat

Nice and clear also your explanations are fluent… Thanks

#33 Krishna Prasad

Some of you asked about the steps to navigate to the next topic (# 2 & 3). In the URL of the site, change the number to 2 or 3 as you want and you will be able to get there.


#34 kasturee

your presentation is very good, I am new to this field & actually gathering knowledge.

Thank you

#35 Vaishnavi T

I am using TestLink 1.9.9 version and it doesnot have my settings option .can i just know how can i generate the key??

#36 Anija

Hai sir,
I’m a manual tester, I really need help on writing testplan. If i have 20 test cases related to regression testing, all will come under one test plan?

#37 ac

sdjbvhk jk,kn ugfyu uuoo. hyuibn juui uiiol kijug.

#38 Vaseem

Hey Folks,

I have been using Testlink from 2 Years and just I have verified the above steps, but I dont think so they correct one, in the above Where is the Keyword management ? how we will use them with the Test cases? how you will identify in which Test phase we are moreover We need to generate the Test cases from Requirements,we should not jump directly to Test Specification,and we should map the each requirement with Test cases………… If any concerns catch me ||vaseemsix@gmail.com|mohammad.vaseem@goktree.com|mohammad.vaseem@ktree.com

#39 Abhyanand Mauar

Very good article and good step by step description.
Can you provide the similar type of article for JMETER.
If possible share the link wiht me on my email id.

#40 sandeep

can we integrate testlink with ontime defect tracking tool

#41 Lav

I’m new to Test link. I’m going through the installation of testlink on my PC. For the project I’m using test link I’m the QA but there is a Dev and a Manager. I would like to create a admin account for our project and share the details with them .

I’ ve some Questions :
1) If there are 3 members in our project and with diff roles (test, manager, dev). Should they set up all the installation like what i did to view the defects or how to do it?

#42 SWTester

Hi guys,

I have questions related to Test Specification Tab on Dashboard (or) Desktop (Homepage). Whatever term is used.

Step 1: I have created a project (Say Deep)
Step 2: I have created a Testplan (Say Water)
Step 3: I have createad a Build (Say Sea V1.0)
Step 4: Created a Testsuite (Say Humanbeings) under project “Deep”
Step 5: I have created two Testsuite (Say Man and Women respectively) under testsuite “Human beings”.
Question in step 5: Are these (Man & Women)called child Testsuites? (or) testsuites (Man and Women) nested under testsuites “Human beings”
Step 6: I have created 5 test cases in each test suites.

Question related to Test Specification:

In testspecification i see only the Testsuite (Humanbeings, Man & Women) for all the testplans. What is the purpose of testspecification & how can it be used efficiently?

Scenario: I have created more testplans (Fire, Land, Sky) under the same project and i want to have the same test suites (Human beings but now name changed as Humanbeings 1, Humanbeings 2 and Humanbeings 3 ) then the same test suites (Man & Women) with the same TCs under the newly created testpalns.
Question: How do i change the name of the Testsuites in new testplans?
My findings during the name change: During name change of test suite under one testplan i see that all the testsuite in other testplans are changed (Because i think everything is linked). Some testplans were created from old testplans & some were not created from old testplans (i.e. independent of the already created testplan)

P.S.: If i have created a lot of confusion kindly metion where the confusion is. Then i can improve my explanation.

#43 SWTester

Hi guys,

In test execution of a test case there are three possible results that can be choosen namely Passed, Failed and Blocked.

Question: Can i have one more status as NA? i guess it can be coded in the tool but i am not a programmer. Can anyone tell me where i can add this module?

What is the actual meaning of status “Blocked”?

#44 SWTester

Hi guys,


Comments #42 & #43 are from me.
I am using TestLink 1.9.14

#45 SWTester

Hi Guys,

Do we always see all the created testcases of particular project under “Test specification”?

I have created 6 sample TC’s under the project “i am not sure” which is allocated as 3 TCs each in each testsuite.
I assigned 6 TCs to “example testplan #1” and 3 TCs to “example testplan #2”.
Under the “Current Test Plan” i selected “example testplan #2” (i.e. this testplan is active now which has just 3 TCs). Now i navigate to test specification and i see all the created TCs under that project but not just the assigned TCs to that testplan.
Is this how the functionality of “Test specification” constructed in TestLink?

#46 Mamatha


“TestLink Online Demo here” is not working pls help.


#47 Mamatha


anyone using Tarantula Test Management tool? How it is?


#48 Narasimha


I want to buy this tool What we need

DB: ???
Web server : ??

#49 Anand Awate

Superb article

#50 Praveen Ambi


I am using the bugtracker.net for defect management/tracking. how to integrate this bugtracker.net with test link tool as this is not present in the issue tracker management feature….. kindly help..

Thanks in advance

#51 SP

Hello All,

Can anyone recommend an open source test management tool?

Thanks in advance

#52 Marcos Ribeiro

Great Job! Thanks!
Now going to the second part!

#53 Muthuprasanna VG

While giving httpd -k start
there occurs error
AH00558: httpd: Could not reliably determine the server’s fully qualified domain name, using fe80::604d:30d3:ff33:d29d. Set the server name directive globally to suppress the message
(OS 10048) Only one usage of each socket address (protocol/ network address/port)
is normally permitted.

#54 swapnil

It’s very useful ……good job


#55 laxmi

I used Xampp server to install Testlink but.
I cant find lines to edit, in config file.
some how i tried to change the lines(except the middle one, which i cant find) but on opening the testlink on localhost it showed 404 error.
I have checked almost all online help. But not able to install teslink.
PLease help.

#56 Balaji

I am using 1.9.14 version & ms office 2016. I have manually created some test cases and exported them as xml. When I try to open the xml in excel 2016, i am getting the following error -“The specified xml source does not refer to a schema. Excel will create a schema based on the xml source data”. If click ok button to proceed further and add some test cases and export the data as xml, again I am getting error as “Cannot save or export xml data.The XML maps in this worksheet are not exportable”. I don’t know whether this is an issue with this version or excel.

Please help.


#57 Golden

Good one

#58 T.S. Anil Kumar

I am using windows 7 pro for installing & configuring the testsoftware but and I have installed xampp 3.2.1.
after after completing the apache when I restart the service its not working giving the error, can you pls guide me how to go about it. ( AH00526: Syntax error on line 561 of c:/xampp/apache/conf/httpd.conf: invalid command ‘application’ , perhaps misspelled or defined by a module not included in the server configuration)

#59 Smit Belani

Hi while installing apache i faced the error vcruntime140.dll missing.. after getting solution from google i tried install/uninstall with Microsoft window redistributable but still i am unable to install.pls help me get out of it

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