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Robot Framework vs Selenium: What are the differences?

Introduction

The Key differences between Robot Framework and Selenium are as follows:

  1. Architecture: Robot Framework is an open-source test automation framework that uses a keyword-driven approach, allowing testers to write tests in a domain-specific language (DSL) using keywords and reusable high-level test templates. Selenium, on the other hand, is a set of open-source tools and libraries used to automate web browsers for testing purposes. It provides a programming interface to control browser actions and interact with web elements directly.

  2. Language Support: Robot Framework supports its own DSL that is based on the keyword-driven testing approach. It also provides support for writing test cases in other languages such as Python, Java, and .NET by using their respective libraries. Selenium primarily supports writing test scripts in programming languages like Python, Java, C#, Ruby, and JavaScript, with each language having its own Selenium bindings.

  3. Test Data Handling: Robot Framework offers built-in support for handling test data in tabular format using plain text or CSV files. Test data can be easily managed using variables and data-driven approaches, allowing for easy test case customization and reusability. Selenium does not provide a specific mechanism for managing test data, and it relies on programming languages and external libraries for handling test data and data-driven testing.

  4. Test Execution: Robot Framework allows for test execution in various ways, including running tests sequentially, in parallel, or distributed across multiple machines. It provides command-line and IDE support for executing tests and generating test reports. Selenium relies on test scripts written in programming languages and requires a test runner to execute tests. It provides libraries and frameworks for running tests using popular unit test frameworks like JUnit and TestNG.

  5. Browser Compatibility: Robot Framework supports various web browsers through Selenium and other browser-specific libraries. It provides cross-browser testing capabilities, allowing users to execute tests on different browsers and platforms. Selenium, being a set of tools and libraries, directly interacts with web browsers and supports a wide range of browsers, including Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and Internet Explorer.

  6. Community and Ecosystem: Robot Framework has a strong and active community with a wide range of libraries, plugins, and integrations available. It has a supportive user base and provides extensive documentation and resources for learning and troubleshooting. Selenium also has a large community and ecosystem with a vast array of resources and libraries available. It is widely adopted and used by both individual testers and large organizations.

In summary, the key differences between Robot Framework and Selenium lie in their architecture, language support, test data handling, test execution capabilities, browser compatibility, and community ecosystem.

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we are having one web application developed in Reacts.js. in the application, we have only 4 to 5 pages that we need to test. I am having experience in selenium with java. Please suggets which tool I should use. and why ............................ ............................ .............................

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Prashanth Marappa
Senior Software Engineer at Mphasis · | 1 upvotes · 220.9K views
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with the help of selenium we can automate react js for functional testing

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Pros of Robot Framework
Pros of Selenium
  • 23
    Easy with CI/CD
  • 22
    Open Source
  • 21
    Simple Usage
  • 14
    Easily extendable
  • 13
    Vast Scope more than Front End
  • 12
    Fast
  • 4
    Mobile supports
  • 4
    Extensive libraries
  • 4
    Supports windows applications
  • 3
    Easy for Non-tech personal
  • 176
    Automates browsers
  • 154
    Testing
  • 101
    Essential tool for running test automation
  • 24
    Record-Playback
  • 24
    Remote Control
  • 8
    Data crawling
  • 7
    Supports end to end testing
  • 6
    Easy set up
  • 6
    Functional testing
  • 4
    The Most flexible monitoring system
  • 3
    End to End Testing
  • 3
    Easy to integrate with build tools
  • 2
    Comparing the performance selenium is faster than jasm
  • 2
    Record and playback
  • 2
    Compatible with Python
  • 2
    Easy to scale
  • 2
    Integration Tests
  • 0
    Integrated into Selenium-Jupiter framework

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Cons of Robot Framework
Cons of Selenium
  • 8
    Nested Loops
  • 1
    Devtooling is not there
  • 1
    Mostly for python
  • 0
    Extensive library support
  • 0
    Mobile supports
  • 8
    Flaky tests
  • 4
    Slow as needs to make browser (even with no gui)
  • 2
    Update browser drivers

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What is Robot Framework?

It is a generic test automation framework for acceptance testing and acceptance test-driven development. It has easy-to-use tabular test data syntax and it utilizes the keyword-driven testing approach. Its testing capabilities can be extended by test libraries implemented either with Python or Java, and users can create new higher-level keywords from existing ones using the same syntax that is used for creating test cases.

What is Selenium?

Selenium automates browsers. That's it! What you do with that power is entirely up to you. Primarily, it is for automating web applications for testing purposes, but is certainly not limited to just that. Boring web-based administration tasks can (and should!) also be automated as well.

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What companies use Robot Framework?
What companies use Selenium?
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What tools integrate with Selenium?

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What are some alternatives to Robot Framework and Selenium?
Cucumber
Cucumber is a tool that supports Behaviour-Driven Development (BDD) - a software development process that aims to enhance software quality and reduce maintenance costs.
Cypress
Cypress is a front end automated testing application created for the modern web. Cypress is built on a new architecture and runs in the same run-loop as the application being tested. As a result Cypress provides better, faster, and more reliable testing for anything that runs in a browser. Cypress works on any front-end framework or website.
TestNG
It is a testing framework designed to simplify a broad range of testing needs, it covers all categories of tests: unit, functional, end-to-end, integration, etc.Run your tests in arbitrarily big thread pools with various policies available (all methods in their own thread, one thread per test class, etc.
Gauge
Gauge is created by ThoughtWorks. Gauge let you write tests in plain-speak and refactor fearlessly. Gauge’s pluggable architecture allows you to customize your environment so you can write tests in the language and IDE of your choice.
Katalon Studio
Katalon Studio is a free and robust automation solution for API, Web and Mobile testing. It integrates all necessary components with built-in keywords and project templates into a complete automation framework. Katalon Studio is easy-to-use for new users but still offers advanced capabilities for experienced users. The solution is trusted by an active community of over 150K users from 150+ countries around the world.
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