It’s crucial that software development teams use the latest, best-of-breed testing tools to gain reliability and efficiency during their web application testing process, especially as applications become more complex.
Testing tools foster collaboration and can help simplify the software analysis process and results. They also can improve test execution overall. This blog will spotlight some of the most versatile tools categorized by the type of testing they are used in, and the benefits a tester can derive from them.
Tools for monitoring network traffic
Fiddler. Fiddler is an HTTP tool that testers can use to monitor, calculate and reuse HTTP requests. It helps by monitoring HTTP traffic to help testers modify and debug applications more efficiently.
Testers can see network requests and responses from each user and apply filters on the network traffic to troubleshoot it on any browser, including IE, Chrome, Safari, Firefox, etc. The below snippet shows how Fiddler can be used.1
- Charles Proxy. Charles Proxy is a cross-platform HTTP proxy that helps track the HTTP and SSL/HTTPs influx between the developer’s computer and the internet. It uses requisitions, responses and HTTP headers containing cookies and caching to do so. It is similar to Fiddler but has some more complex features. Charles Proxy uses a throttle preset to set the Internet bandwidth to conduct performance tests.
Tools for API testing
- Postman is a Google Chrome plug-in tool utilized primarily for API testing services. This tool is used by both development and Test Automation teams. In API, the user lacks GUI, so testing is performed at the message layer.
Users can create a collection of Representational State Transfer (REST) calls and save each call as part of a collection for execution. REST uses four main HTTP methods—GET request (to retrieve resource), POST request (to create resource), PUT request (to update resource) and DELETE request (to delete resource). The testers make use of this tool to test or automate RESTful services.
The below snippet shows the Postman tool.2
Tools for markup validation
4. The W3C Markup Validation Service. This is a free online service that testers can use to validate HTML/XHTML. The W3C Markup Validation Service enables users to validate the markup of web documents in HTML, SMIL, XHTML, etc.
These markups are crucial to ensure high standards for web pages. So, validating the web documents helps drastically improve document quality saving both time and money.
The below snippet depicts the W3C Markup Validation Service.3
Web browser/extension tools
- Check My Links. This is a useful extension in Chrome which primarily functions by crawling through all the links available on a webpage and checks each one of them. Check My Links identifies and highlights the links that are broken or invalid by redirecting and giving warnings. It can quickly dive into multiple pages and give a statistical report about the links.
In the below snippet, the links on the webpage are marked with different colors depending on the outcome.4
The below snippet depicts the Firebug tool.5
- EditThisCookie. In some web application testing, testers are required to validate the cookies. EditThisCookie is an extension tool available for multiple browsers that enables users to add, delete, edit, search, protect, and block cookies. This add-on can enable users to edit text files without having to refresh the page.
The below snippet shows the EditThisCookie tool.6
- Togglecase URL Encoder/Decoder. During web and mobile application testing, there are instances when testers get server responses in an encoded format. This can become difficult to comprehend and require a decoder. In some cases, the encoder is required to pass the string. To meet both needs, a free online service like togglecase is available, as depicted in the below snippets. 7
Tools for GUI Verification
- Color Picker. Color Picker is an easy-to-use browser extension that enables users to check the color of elements on a webpage in RGB/Hex code format, which helps in UI validation while web application testing. The user starts the color picker and puts the mouse anywhere on the webpage. It immediately identifies the color of that pixel in RGB/Hex code format and provides the output as seen in the below screenshot.8
- MeasureIt. A browser extension that offers a ruler to measure the size of an element in UI, MeasureIt validates size horizontally and vertically in pixels. Also, it enables the calculation of the space between the two points. Users start the application and draw a ruler over the webpage, thus providing the size on the ruler in pixels, as shown in the below snippet.9
These tools help improve efficiency of web application testing by reducing the effort during rigorous testing schedules, enabling the tester to perform some tasks that aren’t otherwise possible, and improving the accuracy of the testing process and outcomes.
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