Selenium has become the most sought after test automation tool in the world and more and more developers and test managers are preferring it over other test automation tools. Selenium has many advantages over other tools and some of them are as follows.
- Selenium is a free and open source software. This feature reduces the expenditure for testing as no license fee need be paid.
- Selenium can run on different platforms including Windows and Linux. This feature helps those who are well versed with different platforms to work with selenium.
- Selenium is compatible with different browsers including Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Chrome etc. Hence people who are familiar with different browsers can work with selenium.
- Selenium supports multiple programming languages like java, C#, Python, Ruby and PHP. This feature helps the professionals who are familiar with different programming languages to work easily with selenium.
- Selenium is very user-friendly.
Selenium is actually a test automation suite which has several components. Major among these components are Selenium IDE, RC, and Webdriver. This article deals with the differences between these components.
Introduction to Selenium IDE
Selenium IDE is a complete Integrated Development Environment for executing tests. It is implemented as a firefox add-on and has recording and editing facilities. Besides, it allows debugging too.
At the same time, it has several limitations also.
- The scripts should be recorded in firefox only.
- Reporting feature is very poor in Selenium IDE and does not match the standards of the usual reports to test managers or test leaders etc.
- Selenium IDE does not support Parallel execution of tests which is one of the main advantages of test automation.
- It also does not support Remote execution
Introduction to Selenium RC (Remote Control)
Those who are behind Selenium are aware of these drawbacks and hence they have come up with a newer version, Selenium RC. Actually, this is not a new tool or an extension but a library containing different interfaces, classes, and packages. Selenium RC has the following advantages.
- Unlike IDE, it supports different browsers including firefox, internet explorer, chrome etc.
- Integration with TestNG makes Selenium RC more powerful.
- When integrated with TestNG, the reporting features are excellent.
- Multiple and parallel execution is also possible with TestNG
As Selenium RC has many advantages over Selenium IDE, it also has its disadvantages
- It has to communicate with the server each time it runs a test. It communicates with the server and the server, in turn, communicates with the browser.
- It does not support mobile based applications
Introduction about Selenium Webdriver
Selenium webdriver is the latest addition to Selenium suite and it also is known as Selenium 2.0. It has all the features of Selenium RC and has many other features which are designed to cover up the disadvantages of Selenium RC.
- As there is no server involved it has enhanced the performance. The test scripts written will communicate directly with the browser.
- It supports mobile automation also.
These points will be taught in detail in selenium webdriver tutorial and selenium RC tutorial.