Katalon Smart Wait: Putting An End To The Selenium Timing Issue

Learn How To Put An End To The Selenium Timing Issue In This Complete Hands-On Review Of Katalon Smart Wait:

Selenium Webdriver (Selenium) is one of the most popular web testing automation frameworks in the test automation community. The tool is open-source with comprehensive capabilities for the users to explore and freely integrate with their workflow.

Selenium is a powerful tool for web testing. However, making the most of the tool is still a challenging task for those who lack sufficient programming experiences.

Using Selenium as one of the core components, Katalon Studio is a powerful test automation solution that is a lot easier to adopt, regardless of whether you have programming skills or not.

Katalon Smart Wait

In this tutorial, we will see how to apply Katalon Studio to resolve one of the most common Selenium problems.

Related reading => Katalon Studio Detailed Hands-On Tutorial

The Age-Old Selenium Timing Issue

Katalon Smart Wait - Selenium Timing Issue

If you are already familiar with Selenium, then Javascript or Ajax front end technologies are the most common practices used for developing web applications. With these techniques, the point at which the page elements are ready for interacting is typically unpredictable, even when the web page has been loaded by the browser.

Some Typical Cases Of This Scenario Include:

  • Elements have not been rendered yet.
  • Elements are overlaid by a waiting spinner.
  • Data are being processed in AJAX requests.

This is a major problem for test automation projects. It requires manual control to ensure that the program takes action. Therefore, while using Selenium as the automation framework, one may easily encounter these exceptions: NoSuchElementException, StaleElementReferenceException or ElementNotVisibleException.

In terms of workaround solutions, Selenium waits are the most popular technique that is used to mitigate or avoid the timing problem. Implicit and explicit waits are often the go-to’s for testers to make the WebDriver wait for elements to be interact-able before proceeding with the actions.

Yet, these two practices work only under certain conditions with proper execution practices. It also requires programming expertise and manual insertion of wait statements.

As a result, the solution itself leads to other timing issues and pain points as shown below:

  • Slower test creation time.
  • Worse and bigger code.
  • Unstable execution output.
  • Slower test execution time.
  • Harder to debug and figure out the root causes.
  • Harder to maintain test scripts.

This eventually causes:

  • Low team performance.
  • High maintenance cost & effort.
  • Poor application under test (AUT) quality.

Katalon Smart Wait To Handle Web Loading Issue

Katalon Smart Wait - Web Loading Issue

Katalon Studio has introduced the Smart Wait Function in its most recent version i.e. Katalon Studio 7. This new function handles the Selenium wait issue without any additional scripts. Katalon Smart Wait will automatically wait for all front-end processes of the web page to complete before taking the next step.

Smart Wait can be easily enabled for the whole project or specific test cases for reducing the time to create, debug, execute, analyze, and maintain test scripts. It is extremely useful for your test projects when the tool automatically waits for front-end processing. This eventually prevents the problem of unstable outputs from the execution process.

For Example, with overnight-batch execution, unexpected failures can stop the whole process, by causing setbacks as no one is available to hit re-run. Katalon Smart Wait will eliminate this issue and improve the stability of the execution output, and ultimately speed up the CI/CD pipeline.

As timing control codes are no longer needed, teams can focus 100% on testing scenarios and improving the test script quality. Smart Wait keeps the execution history clear, hence when you get to the analytics phase, you can detect operation insights and patterns, then reduce the cost and effort spent on maintenance.

Development and deployment of test scripts can now be scaled easily to meet the growing needs of the teams without flakiness due to timing factors.

How To Use Katalon Smart Wait?

There are two ways to use the Smart Wait feature in Katalon Studio:

#1) Apply Smart Wait To All Elements In A Project

To enable the Smart Wait function for the whole project in Katalon Studio, navigate to Project -> Settings -> Execution –> Select Enable in Default Smart Wait.

Katalon Smart Wait

#2) Apply Smart Wait To Specific Elements In A Script

It's important that you disable Default Smart Wait in Project Settings if you want to use the Smart Wait function for certain test elements only. Navigate to Project -> Settings -> Select Disable in Default Smart Wait.

Use the enableSmartWait and disableSmartWait keywords to enable and disable this function respectively.

  • enableSmartWait: To enable the Smart Wait function when it's disabled by default in project settings.
  • disableSmartWait: To disable the Smart Wait function when it's enabled.

Conclusion

It's great that Katalon has included this feature in its latest release. Katalon Smart Wait effectively solves the wait issue, ensures stable test outputs, and overall, it brings the team closer to continuous delivery while working smoothly with other unique capabilities of the Katalon framework.

Moreover, it saves a great amount of time in the setup stage. This function truly sets Katalon Studio apart from the other products in the web testing capabilities.

You can download Katalon Studio and try it out yourself.

Recommended Reading

Leave a Comment