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  1. #1
    TG
    TG is offline
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    Why do You use SilkTest over other tools?

    What are the major reasons/capabilities that you decided and continue to use SilkTest over other competing tools?

    Did it live up to the expectations you had for it? If not, why?

  2. #2
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    Re: Why do You use SilkTest over other tools?

    Very good question...

    I didn't choose SilkTest, the company I work for chose it for me. Before employing me, they had already decided on SilkTest.

    In my previous job, I was able to evaluate different tools and choose the best suited one for the company.

    I don't mind SilkTest, however, it does have its limitations, but so do other tools. If I had the choice of choosing a tool for my company, I probably wouldn't choose SilkTest.

    ------------------
    Who Tests The Tester...
    Who Tests The Tester...

  3. #3
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    Re: Why do You use SilkTest over other tools?

    Why do I (time and time again) choose SilkTest? I'll stick to web-based testing, since that is mainly what I am doing now.

    Object Recognition:
    Recognizing objects on a page is tricky. Seems like all the tools do it slightly diffrent. Before SilkTest 5.0.3 and the use of the DOM object model, SilkTest was not very good at recognizing objects. Now however, with the DOM model, SilkTest rocks. However, this only works for Internet Explorer. On complex web applications, trying to get both browsers automated is costly, so picking one is the right choice. Since IE has over 90% of the market now (with NS between 5% and 8%), it reforces the choice to use just IE.

    I do have to say that the object reconignition that WinRunner has is pretty sweet too.

    Coding
    This is the main reason I go with SilkTest. When doing functional testing on a complex web application, you often need to have complex logic in your testcase to handle it. The 4Test launguage is a complete programming laungang. Very much like C, which provides just the basics, but allows for libraries of new functions to be created. With 4Test, almost every task I needed to get done that wasn't part of the laguage, I was able to add in by writing the code for it (in the 4Test launguage).

    I simply could not see writing functional testcases without a desent programming launguage. If WinRunner would change their launguage from TSL to something more robust, I would really consider them.

    Other
    Even though I am doing web-based testing, I still need access to Win32 applications. Often I need to telnet into the Unix box and change a file, or run a java program there. SilkTest allows me to do this quite easily.

    The *semi* object-oriented nature of the launguage also makes it nice fro creating new classes (look on this board, I have posted classed for doing ftp, XMLParsing, logging).

    Support
    For the past few years, I have been hearing people say how good the Mercury support was, and how bad the Segue support was. I think that is changing.

    Recently I have had some problems with SilkTest, which I was able to get traction on from Segue. I am also have a ton of problems with Mercury TestDirector. On the phone with them daily. However, they have no clue how to solve the issues we have and are not willing to get us a Sr. Engineer to get the problems resolved. They are pretty much taking the attide the hurt Segue "We are MERCURY, we want to care, but we really don't". This, of course, is just my opinion based on the last encounters with them.


    That said...
    Is SilkTest the best? That depends. I enjoy the full programming launguage. Others without programming experince in several launguages, it is a liablity. (since 4Test is slightly diffrent from others launguages, having a knowldge of programming really helps).

    For doing basic web sites that you do not need to program a heavy logic layer, WinRunner will easily do the job, and most people would be happier with it.

    Also, SilkTest requires a good framework which among other things, has something to aid in making data-driven testcases. If you are just starting off with SilkTest, it might be good to get a consulant in who has a good framework to implement that, or an experienced SilkTest programmer/architect.

    WinRunner already has that basic framework built in. You can pretty much start using it out of the box.

    So, it comes down to how much effort your willing to put into getting things going. SilkTest needs a framework to become trully effective, but provides the programming language to get you there. WinRunner is pretty much ready to go out of the box, but (in my opinion) is limited in the programming area (this can be good or bad, depending on your point of view).

    At my current job, we have both WinRunner and SilkTest. Why both? Before I started, this was what the managers thoughts where: Most people in QA are not programmers, or even close. WinRunner allows them to get up and going with automating testcases quickly. The testcases they do will be limited, but they can get them done with limited programming, if any. SilkTest is more powerful, if the people can program, and if they can get someone who knows the tool well.


    Hope I didn't confuse the issue too much.



    ------------------
    David Genrich
    david@e2Open.com
    david_kim@usa.net

  4. #4
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    Re: Why do You use SilkTest over other tools?

    I have to ditto the resonse above, but I'd also like to add a couple of other reasons...

    1 - Extensibility - SilkTest is very capable when it comes to working with applications that most tools won't work with. The Extension Kit allows you to extend SilkTest's ability to work with custom objects and make possbile what was previously impossible. It isn't something that one can use without help from a developer, but it answers the long standing QA question of how to make applications 'testable'. I know a company that has a UI that is all graphical and they used Segue's Extension Kit to make SilkTest able to work with their controls and have been using the same scripts for over 5 years.

    2 - Distributed testing - I have yet to use any tool that allows you to create tests that involve multiple machines being controlled from a single script so easy. Some tools take the approach of having some other tool launch the testing tool on several machines and you then have to invent your own complex scheme of how you are going to let machineA know what happened on machineB nefore a test can proceed. SilkTest has this capability and has had it since it was called QA Partner version 1.0. Most people put these types of tests under the heading of things that they aren't even going to look at automating. This is sad since it is exactly this type of test that when done manually that takes up large amounts of time and people to execute.

    No tool is perfect, but I've found that using SilkTest, I can take automation further.

    ------------------
    James Soderborg
    http://www.ameliortech.com
    jamesso@ameliortech.com

    [This message has been edited by jamesso (edited 10-04-2001).]

 

 

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