Web apps are not always limited to operating only online. They occasionally need to use the desktop to perform tasks like downloads and uploads. It can be challenging to automate certain workflows in Selenium. Desktop windows are not covered by Selenium because it only automates browsers. A little AutoIt is required if you want to automate Selenium workflows that switch between the desktop and the browser.
What is AutoIt
A freeware programming language modelled after BASIC called AutoIt v3 is intended for general scripting and automating the Windows GUI. Task automation is achieved using a combination of simulated keystrokes, mouse movements, and window/control manipulation, which is not possible or reliable with other languages (e.g. VBScript and SendKeys). Additionally, AutoIt is incredibly compact, self-contained, and works right out of the box on any version of Windows without the need for obtrusive “runtimes”!
AutoIt is a simple automation tool, similar to Selenium, however, it is used for desktop automation rather than web automation. It is a strong tool that can automate not only desktop windows, buttons, and forms but also mouse movements and keystrokes. Similar to Selenium IDE, it also provides you with a recording feature that produces the scripts for you to use the same script in your test. Check out a good online Selenium certification course to learn more about AutoIT.
Easy to learn: It is simple to learn and use because it is just another scripting language. You can find all the functions and techniques you can use in AutoIt under the help menu, which includes thorough explanations and examples.
Simulates keystrokes: Wherever keystrokes are necessary for your test, such as when entering data into dialog boxes or entering passwords into pop-up windows, you can use this to simulate them. Selenium cannot do this.
Simulate mouse motions: Similar to keystrokes, there may be circumstances in which you must simulate mouse movements, and in those circumstances, doing so is the simplest course of action.
The ability to compile scripts into standalone executables: It implies that you can run your scripts without an IDE, and you can easily convert your automation scripts into .exe files which can be run on their own.
Windows Management: It allows you to essentially do everything you want with windows, including move, hide, show, resize, activate, and close them. Title, window text, size, position, class, and even internal Win32 API handles can all be used to identify a window.
Windows Controls: Without the worry of keystrokes getting lost, you may directly access and interact with edit boxes, check boxes, list boxes, combo boxes, buttons, and status bars. even interact with controls in inactive windows!
Extensive community-based support forums and a thorough help file: Any Windows operation you can think of will be available in the help file. The big user base is there to assist you if you run into any problems or become stuck somewhere.
In other words, AutoIt can handle any windows, mouse, and keystroke emulation that Selenium cannot. Utilising the script created by the AutoIt tool in Selenium is all that is required.
How to Download AutoIt Version 3?
- Go to the download page on the AutoIt website. It will show the most recent version. Click on the AutoIt download that is listed as the top one.
- A pop-up box will appear; select the “Save File” button.
- Double-clicking the.exe file when the download is finished will prompt you to accept the terms and conditions. Select “I Agree” from the menu.
- Complete the process and click on the ‘Finish’ button at the end of the installation.
- Go to your program menu and look at the AutoIt folder. If you have a 32-bit system.
- If you have a 64-bit system and during installation, you have chosen the default x86 configuration.
Recording of AutoIt script
It is possible that you discover that AutoIt has a recording tool that aids in the creation of scripts automatically. However, to do that, we must use its AutoIt Script Editor addon. Although a script editor is installed alongside AutoIt, it has extremely few features.
How to Install the AutoIt Script Editor
- Go to the download page on the AutoIt website. It will show the most recent version. Click on the AutoIt Script Editor second download to get started.
- Click the “SciTE4AutoIt3.exe” link at the top of the newly opened page to begin the installation procedure.
AutoIt file upload in Selenium
The procedure of uploading a file involves four steps:
- Find the Windows control in the first step.
- Create an AutoIt script using identified windows control.
- Assemble the .au3 script and convert it into a .exe file.
- Call the .exe file into the Selenium test case.
Auto IT is an important tool used in Selenium Webdriver so it is an advantage for you if you understand the concept. You can learn more about AutoIT by checking the online Selenium training platform available.