Learning Basics of Rational Robot – IBM Test automation tool

This is a guest article from J.B.Rajkumar. Author is having good experience on automation tools and is currently working with a top MNC.

Learning Basics of  Rational Robot (7.0)

1. Features of Rational Robot

Rational Robot is an automated functional, regression testing tool for automating Windows, Java, IE and ERP applications under windows platform.  Rational Robot provides test cases for common objects such as menus, lists, bitmaps and specialized test cases for objects specific to the development environment. It integrates with tools like Rational Test Manager, Rational ClearQuest and Requisite Pro in the Rational Unified Processor for Defect Tracking, Change Management and Requirement Traceability. It also supports UI technologies like Java, the Web, all VS.NET controls, Oracle Forms, Borland Delphi and Sybase Power Builder applications.

2. Rational Administrator

It is a tool for managing associations between Rational artifacts such as Test Datastores, Requisite Pro projects and Rose models.

3. Recording Options

Using Object-oriented technology, Robot identifies an object by its name property not by its location coordinates. There are two different options

4. SQABasic language

SQABasic is similar to Microsoft Visual Basic. All the scripts will be in scriptname.rec format.  When you playback the script, Robot automatically compiles and runs the script, which repeats your actions and executes the verification points.

5    Shell Scripts

It is a master script that calls other automated scripts and plays them back in sequence. “call script  test1” is a command to call script named test1. Combined into a single shell script, scripts can run in unattended mode and perform comprehensive test coverage.  It centralizes test results into one test log.

6    Low-level Recording

Turn “Low-Level Recording On”  in Robot during recording, mouse and keyboard actions are automatically stored in an external file.

7    Verification Points

Verification points verify that a certain action has taken place, or verify the state of an object. There are 11 Verification points in Robot

When you are creating verification points, there will be two options – Wait State and Expected Results.

Wait states are useful when AUT requires an unknown amount of time to complete a task. Using a wait state keeps the verification point form failing if the task is not completed immediately or if the data is not accessible immediately.

Expected Results – Click Pass or Fail in the Verification Point Name dialog box.

8    Variable Window

During debugging, if you want to examine variable and constant values, you can variables window. View->Variables.

9.    Object Mapping

If AUT contains a custom object or any object that Robot does not recognize, you

can create a custom object mapping before start recording.  By adding the object’s

class to the list of classes that Robot recognizes, and then associating the class to a

standard object type. Robot saves this custom class/object type mapping in the

project and uses it to identify the custom object during playback.

10    Debug Tools

Animate(F11) – Animation mode allows you to see each line of script as it executes.

Step Over(F10) – Use to execute a single command line within a script

Step Into(F8) – Use to being single step execution

Step Out(F7) – Use to step out of the called script and return to the calling script.

Go Until Cursor(F6) – Use to play back the active GUI script, stopping at the text cursor location.

11    Library Files and Header Files

Header files have .sbh extensions and contain the procedure declarations and global variables referred to in your script files.  There are two types of library files. Those with .sbl extensions can’t have verification points. Those with .rec extensions are stored in the project and can have verification points. Both Header and library are in \SQABAS32 in the project directory.

12    Image Masks used for dynamic objects

Image masks are used to hide an area of the screen. When you play back a script that contains an Image VP and a mask, Robot ignores the masked area when comparing actual results to the recorded baseline.

13    Data Pool

A Datapool is a test dataset that supplies data variables in a test script during playback.  Using data pools allows you to run multiple iterations of a script using different data each time.  It can be created and managed using Test Manager for data driven tests.

 14. Important Web Site for Rational Robot trial version download and Rational Robot tutorial:


Hope this is a good start for those who want to learn Rational Robot.  If you have any questions please feel free to comment below.