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Getting started with the Automated Test Framework

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Getting started with the Automated Test Framework

Learn the basic concepts of the Automated Test Framework (ATF) then build and run your first test.


When you create an automated test, you create a record in the Tests table. Each test record contains a related list of steps and each step defines an action for the test to execute (for example, Open a form for a new record on the incident table).

When you run a test, the framework creates a Test Results record that you can inspect to learn what happened.

Step types

An automated test can perform many of the same operations users normally perform manually through the web browser. Some examples of these form steps include the following:
  • Open a form
  • Set Field Value
  • Assert Value
  • Field Validation (for example, check if a field is mandatory, read-only, and so forth)
  • Submit a form

These test steps apply to list and form views; they do not apply to custom pages.

Automated tests can also execute server-side steps independently of a browser. Some examples of server steps include the following:
  • Impersonate a user
  • Insert a record
  • Run a server-side script

In addition to the out-of-the-box test steps, users with the atf_test_admin role can create custom server-side step types with the Step Configurations module.

Basic functionality

With the Automated Test Framework you can do the following:
  • Create and run tests
  • Edit existing tests to add or delete steps or to change the order in which the test executes steps
  • Create and run a suite of tests that execute a batch of tests in a specified order
  • View detailed records, including screenshots, of the actions the system took for each test step and the results of those steps
  • Pass values from one step to another. For example, you can take the document ID created when you submit a form for a new record, then open a form using that document ID.
  • Change administration settings to affect how the Automated Test Framework works

Getting Started

We suggest you start by creating and running a few simple tests, and then move on to more complex testing scenarios. For instructions, see Build and run your first automated test.