Thursday, July 19, 2007

A Newsgroup Question about eValid, Watir, and Selenium

Recently one of the newsgroups that we monitor regularly posted the following question:
    I can't understand why anyone would buy a web-based test-tool when there are solid open-source alternatives, like Watir and Selenium. How would you differentiate your closed-source tool to these?

eValid's Response
eValid is a fundamentally different architecture from Watir and Selenium and therefore offers much different capabilities.

  • The Watir Web Application Testing in Ruby application drives an IE browser from Ruby scripting, an approach that imposes a range of limitations, (which the Watir site admits): no support for Applets, Flash, and ActiveX components; no support for JScript generated popups; and no recording capability, etc.
  • Selenium uses JScript and Iframes to embed playback action in a browser, an approach that precludes browser-internal object interactions and prevents any "direct to the browser face" interactions. Applets, Flash, and ActiveX can't be handled. There are additional access, security, and synchronization limitations, as described in the Against Javascript writeup.

  • eValid is an IE-equivalent browser built using components and libraries from the Windows software development environment that provide direct low-overhead access to every browser capability.

  • Because eValid *IS* a browser it has the capability to handle crucial activities such as: opaque object (Applets, Flash, ActiveX) support; playback synchronization; adaptive playback; dynamic DOM validation; event synchronization; activity timing; application-mode operation; etc. All of these activities are integrated seamlessly in a GUI-driven system that records test scripts, plays them back, and analyzes, validates, and times test events.

  • eValid use does not involve step-by-step "training" during script creation, script playback (in single or multiple-browser mode), or basic results analysis. The batch mode interface lets eValid act as the engine in regression test activities and server loading or as a Rich Internet Application (RIA) monitoring agent that reliably runs 1,000's of playbacks per hour.

  • eValid is a commercial product that is fully supported, has maintenance subscriptions, and has a significant installed base of users. In continuous development for 5+ years (the current release is Version 8), eValid is a mature and stable product. The ongoing development activity ensures that eValid can meet the challenge of testing and analyzing new kinds of web-browser enabled applications.

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