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Top 100 Automation Interview Questions and Answers

Top 100 Automation Interview Questions and Answers

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1. What is automation testing?

Answer:
Automation testing involves using software tools to execute predefined test cases without human intervention. It ensures consistent test execution, quicker feedback, and increases test coverage. Automation is beneficial for repetitive and regression tests.


2. Name a popular tool used for automation testing.

Answer:
Selenium is a widely-used open-source tool for automating web browsers. It supports multiple programming languages like Java, C#, and Python.
Reference: SeleniumHQ


3. What is a framework in automation?

Answer:
A framework dictates the architecture and best practices for setting up an automation environment. Examples include Data-Driven, Keyword-Driven, and Page Object Model (POM).


4. Provide a simple Selenium code snippet to open Google in Chrome.

Answer:

from selenium import webdriver

driver = webdriver.Chrome()
driver.get("https://www.google.com")
driver.close()

This code initializes a Chrome browser, navigates to Google, and then closes the browser.


5. How do you handle dynamic elements in automation?

Answer:
For dynamic elements, Selenium provides Explicit and Implicit waits. You can also use locators like XPath with contains(), starts-with() functions or CSS selectors.
Reference: Selenium Waits


6. What’s the difference between Assert and Verify in Selenium?

Answer:
Assert stops test execution if the check fails, while Verify continues testing even after a failure. Both are used for validation but have different failure handling.


7. What is the Page Object Model (POM)?

Answer:
POM is a design pattern where web pages are represented as classes, and interactions are encapsulated as methods. This promotes code reusability and clearer test structure.
Reference: POM


8. Provide a code snippet to handle dropdowns in Selenium.

Answer:

from selenium.webdriver.support.ui import Select

dropdown = Select(driver.find_element_by_id("dropdown_id"))
dropdown.select_by_visible_text("Option")

This code initializes a dropdown element and selects an option based on visible text.


9. How do you handle pop-up windows in Selenium?

Answer:
Use the switch_to.window() method. For instance, driver.switch_to.window(driver.window_handles[-1]) switches control to the latest opened window.


10. Define Continuous Integration (CI) in automation context.

Answer:
CI involves automatically integrating and testing code changes from multiple contributors frequently, usually several times a day. Tools like Jenkins are popular for CI.
Reference: Jenkins


11. What is a headless browser? Name one.

Answer:
A headless browser performs web browsing without a GUI. It’s faster than traditional browsing. PhantomJS and Chrome in headless mode are examples.


12. What are locators in Selenium? Name a few.

Answer:
Locators help identify elements on the web page. Common Selenium locators include: ID, Name, ClassName, XPath, CSS Selector, LinkText, and PartialLinkText.


13. How do you simulate mouse actions in Selenium?

Answer:
Use the ActionChains class. For instance, ActionChains(driver).move_to_element(element).click(element).perform() simulates mouse hover and click.


14. Provide a code snippet to handle alerts in Selenium.

Answer:

alert = driver.switch_to.alert
alert_text = alert.text
alert.accept()  # To click 'OK'

This code switches to the alert, retrieves its text, and clicks ‘OK’.


15. What’s the difference between driver.close() and driver.quit()?

Answer:
driver.close() closes the current browser window, while driver.quit() closes all browser windows and ends the WebDriver session.


16. How do you handle frames in Selenium?

Answer:
Use switch_to.frame(). Example: driver.switch_to.frame("frameName") switches to a frame using its name.


17. What is the Robot Framework?

Answer:
Robot Framework is a generic open-source automation framework. It uses keyword-driven testing and is extensible through Python and Java.
Reference: Robot Framework


18. How do you handle cookies in Selenium?

Answer:
Use driver.get_cookies() to retrieve all cookies, driver.add_cookie(cookie_dict) to add a cookie, and driver.delete_cookie("cookieName") to delete a specific cookie.


19. How do you perform drag and drop in Selenium?

Answer:
Use ActionChains. For instance:

from selenium.webdriver import ActionChains

ActionChains(driver).drag_and_drop(element1, element2).perform()

This drags element1 and drops it on element2.


20. Define test automation pyramid.

Answer:
The automation pyramid represents different levels of testing automation: Unit tests

at the base (most frequent), Service tests in the middle, and UI tests at the top (least frequent).


21. What are flaky tests?

Answer:
Flaky tests are inconsistent tests that may pass or fail without any code changes. They can be due to timing issues, external dependencies, or other unpredictable factors.


22. What’s data-driven testing?

Answer:
Data-driven testing involves executing the same test scenario with multiple sets of data. Frameworks fetch data from different sources, like Excel or databases, to execute tests repeatedly.


23. What is Selenium Grid?

Answer:
Selenium Grid allows parallel execution of tests on different machines against different browsers. It ensures cross-browser and cross-platform testing efficiency.
Reference: Selenium Grid


24. How do you deal with dynamic web elements?

Answer:
Use dynamic locators like XPath or CSS with functions like contains(), starts-with(), or regular expressions. Additionally, apply waits to handle elements that load at different times.


25. Provide a code snippet for Explicit Wait in Selenium.

Answer:

from selenium.webdriver.common.by import By
from selenium.webdriver.support.ui import WebDriverWait
from selenium.webdriver.support import expected_conditions as EC

element = WebDriverWait(driver, 10).until(
    EC.presence_of_element_located((By.ID, "ElementID"))
)

This waits up to 10 seconds for an element to be present.


26. How do you handle browser sessions in automation?

Answer:
Browser sessions can be managed using WebDriver’s session handling capabilities. driver.get_cookies() retrieves cookies, allowing testers to save and load sessions for subsequent tests.


27. How is cloud-based automation different?

Answer:
Cloud-based automation, like SauceLabs or BrowserStack, allows testing on various devices, OS, and browsers without maintaining an in-house infrastructure. It offers scalability and remote access.
Reference: BrowserStack


28. What is behavior-driven development (BDD) in automation?

Answer:
BDD emphasizes collaboration between developers, QA, and non-technical participants. Tools like Cucumber express tests in natural language, bridging the gap between business and technical teams.


29. How do you handle file uploads in Selenium?

Answer:
Use the send_keys method on the file input element to send the path of the file to be uploaded. Avoid using robot or autoIT classes, as they are less reliable.


30. What is a stub and mock in testing?

Answer:
Stubs and mocks are used for simulating components/modules in unit testing. Stubs provide canned responses, while mocks can verify if they’re called correctly.


31. How do you perform scrolling in a webpage using Selenium?

Answer:
Use JavaScript execution. For instance, driver.execute_script("window.scrollBy(0,500)") scrolls vertically by 500 pixels.


32. What’s the role of an automation framework?

Answer:
An automation framework provides structure, best practices, and guidelines to produce effective test results. It aids in script maintenance, reusability, and reduces code redundancy.


33. How do you validate if an element is displayed on a webpage?

Answer:
Use the is_displayed() method on the web element. For instance, element.is_displayed() returns True if the element is visible.


34. How do you retrieve an attribute value from a web element?

Answer:
Use the get_attribute("attributeName") method. For instance, element.get_attribute("href") fetches the href attribute value.


35. What are the types of waits in Selenium?

Answer:
There are two main types: Implicit Wait (waits a set time for elements) and Explicit Wait (waits until a specific condition occurs or a maximum time elapses).


36. What is cross-browser testing?

Answer:
Cross-browser testing ensures that software works consistently across different web browsers, addressing variations in rendering and functionality.


37. How do you handle Ajax calls in Selenium?

Answer:
Ajax calls can be handled using Explicit Waits with conditions like expected_conditions.element_to_be_clickable() to ensure elements are loaded post-Ajax call.


38. Why is reporting essential in automation?

Answer:
Reporting provides a summary of test execution, highlighting pass, fail, and skip statuses. It aids in quick feedback, debugging, and ensures stakeholders are informed about test health.


39. How do you extract text from a web element?

Answer:
Use the text attribute. For instance, element.text retrieves the visible text of the element.


40. What challenges arise with mobile app automation?

Answer:
Challenges include diverse device/OS combinations, screen sizes, handling interruptions (calls, notifications), different app states, and network variations.



41. What is a test suite in automation?

Answer:
A test suite is a collection of test cases, test scenarios, or both, that are intended to be executed together. It helps in organizing and managing tests, especially in regression testing.


42. How do you manage test data in automation?

Answer:
Test data is managed using data-driven frameworks by fetching data from external sources like Excel, CSV, databases, or XML. Properly structured test data ensures repeatability and scalability.


43. What is parallel execution in test automation?

Answer:
Parallel execution involves running multiple tests simultaneously on different environments. It reduces test execution time and provides quick feedback, especially useful for large test suites.


44. How do you ensure an automation script is reliable and robust?

Answer:
Ensuring scripts handle unexpected events, use appropriate wait strategies, have proper exception handling, and are modular helps in making them reliable and robust.


45. How do you handle captchas in automation?

Answer:
Captchas are anti-automation by design. Generally, they’re disabled in test environments. Alternatively, manual intervention or API endpoints can be used to bypass them.


46. What’s the difference between black box and white box testing in automation?

Answer:
Black box testing focuses on functionality without considering internal structures. White box tests internal structures, logic, and algorithms. Automation can be applied to both based on available knowledge.


47. How do you debug failing automation tests?

Answer:
Reviewing logs, analyzing screenshots or videos of test runs, isolating the failing step, and running the test in local environments are common debugging steps.


48. How can automation support Agile or Scrum methodologies?

Answer:
Automation provides quick feedback, ensuring that new code changes don’t introduce regressions. This supports Agile’s frequent releases and aligns with Scrum sprints.


49. What is API testing and how is it different from UI testing?

Answer:
API testing focuses on the application’s backend, verifying data exchange, response time, and HTTP statuses. UI testing focuses on user interfaces. API tests don’t involve UI interactions, making them faster.


50. Provide a code snippet for handling browser authentication in Selenium.

Answer:

driver.get("http://username:password@website.com")

This bypasses basic browser-based authentication by embedding credentials in the URL.


51. How do you handle browser cookies in Selenium?

Answer:
Selenium provides methods like add_cookie(), get_cookie(), and delete_cookie() to manage cookies, aiding in session handling or testing cookie-related functionality.


52. What is the role of test runners in automation?

Answer:
Test runners manage test execution, providing options like which tests to run, in what order, and generating reports. Popular runners include JUnit and TestNG.


53. Why is version control important in test automation?

Answer:
Version control, like Git, tracks code changes, facilitates collaboration, manages code history, and aids in integrating changes without conflicts.


54. How do you handle dynamic web tables in Selenium?

Answer:
Dynamic tables are handled using loop structures to iterate through rows and columns. XPath or CSS selectors can help in identifying and interacting with specific cells.


55. What is keyword-driven testing?

Answer:
Keyword-driven testing abstracts test scripts, representing actions with keywords. Test data and instructions are separated, allowing non-programmers to write tests by combining keywords.


56. How do you handle multiple windows in Selenium?

Answer:
Use driver.window_handles to manage window handles. switch_to.window(handle) method shifts control between windows. It’s crucial for scenarios involving pop-ups or multi-window interactions.


57. What is continuous testing?

Answer:
Continuous testing involves executing automated tests as part of the software delivery pipeline, ensuring every change meets quality standards before release. It supports continuous integration and continuous deployment (CI/CD).


58. How do you decide what to automate and what not to?

Answer:
Prioritize repetitive tasks, high-risk areas, large data sets, and regression tests. Avoid automating rapidly changing UIs, one-time tasks, or areas where human judgment is essential.


59. What is Selenium WebDriver?

Answer:
Selenium WebDriver is a tool for automating browser actions. It provides a consistent API across browsers and supports multiple programming languages.
Reference: Selenium WebDriver


60. How do you ensure that your automation tests are maintainable?

Answer:
Following best practices, using frameworks, maintaining modularity, adding relevant comments, and regular code reviews help ensure automation tests are maintainable and scalable.



61. How do you handle pop-ups in Selenium?

Answer:
Pop-ups are managed using switch_to.alert() in Selenium. Methods like accept(), dismiss(), and send_keys() can be used to interact with these pop-ups based on requirements.


62. What is the role of Desired Capabilities in Selenium?

Answer:
Desired Capabilities help in setting properties for WebDriver instances, like browser name, platform, or browser version, especially crucial for Selenium Grid configurations.


63. How is mobile automation different from web automation?

Answer:
Mobile automation deals with device-specific challenges like screen sizes, OS versions, interruptions (calls, messages), and gestures. Tools like Appium are used, unlike web-specific tools like Selenium.


64. Explain the importance of test environments in automation.

Answer:
Test environments replicate production settings, ensuring tests run in conditions mirroring live scenarios. Consistent test environments eliminate environment-specific discrepancies.


65. How do you handle session timeouts in automation?

Answer:
Use try-catch blocks to detect session timeout errors. In case of timeouts, automation scripts can be set to re-login or restart the session.


66. How do you use locators in Selenium?

Answer:
Locators like ID, Name, XPath, CSS Selector, and ClassName are used with methods like find_element_by_id or find_element_by_xpath to identify and interact with web elements.


67. What is a test harness in automation?

Answer:
A test harness includes the overall test environment where tests run. It encompasses test data setups, configurations, initialization, and test result reporting mechanisms.


68. How do you handle SSL certificates in Selenium?

Answer:
For handling untrusted SSL certificates, Desired Capabilities or browser options can be used. For Chrome:

chrome_options = webdriver.ChromeOptions()
chrome_options.accept_untrusted_certs = True

69. What are fixtures in automation frameworks?

Answer:
Fixtures set up prerequisites for test execution, ensuring tests run in a predefined environment. They handle tasks like test setup, teardown, and environment cleanup.


70. How do you prioritize test cases in automation?

Answer:
Prioritize based on business impact, frequency of use, complexity, and risk areas. Regression, smoke, and critical path tests often take precedence.


71. What is the role of testbed in automation?

Answer:
A testbed is the environment where tests are executed. It includes software, hardware, network configurations, and any other system setup necessary for testing.


72. How do you handle StaleElementException in Selenium?

Answer:
StaleElementException occurs when a previously located element is no longer present. To handle it, re-locate the element or use wait conditions to ensure the element’s stability.


73. How do you integrate Selenium with tools like Jenkins?

Answer:
Jenkins can run Selenium tests through build steps or post-build actions. Maven or TestNG XML files can trigger tests, and plugins like “HTML Publisher” can display reports.
Reference: Jenkins


74. How is load testing different from automation testing?

Answer:
Load testing assesses system performance under specific loads, while automation testing validates functionality. Load testing tools include JMeter or LoadRunner, whereas Selenium or Appium are used for functional automation.


75. How do you test responsive designs in automation?

Answer:
Using tools like Selenium, testers can set browser dimensions or use mobile emulations. Tools like Galen can also validate layouts across devices and resolutions.


76. How do you handle dynamic dropdowns in Selenium?

Answer:
For dynamic dropdowns, employ Explicit Waits or use methods like driver.find_elements to fetch dynamic values. Iterative loops can help select desired values.


77. What are the key challenges in test automation?

Answer:
Key challenges include maintaining scripts for changing UIs, ensuring cross-platform compatibility, managing test data, handling dynamic elements, and ensuring test environment consistency.


78. How do you automate RESTful APIs?

Answer:
Tools like Postman, RestAssured, or SoapUI can automate RESTful APIs. They validate response codes, payload, headers, and response times, ensuring APIs function correctly.


79. How do you handle iframes in Selenium?

Answer:
Use switch_to.frame method. For instance, driver.switch_to.frame("iframeName") switches control to the iframe using its name or ID.


80. How do you store test results in automation?

Answer:
Results can be stored in files (XML, CSV), databases, or displayed on dashboards. Tools like TestNG or JUnit generate reports, and CI tools like Jenkins can display results with plugins.



81. What is the difference between find_element and find_elements in Selenium?

Answer:
find_element returns the first matching web element, while find_elements returns a list of all matching web elements. The latter is useful when multiple elements match the locator.


82. How can you fetch the current URL using Selenium?

Answer:
Use the current_url attribute of the WebDriver instance. For instance, currentURL = driver.current_url retrieves the URL of the page currently being accessed.


83. What are hybrid frameworks in automation?

Answer:
Hybrid frameworks combine features of multiple frameworks (like Data-Driven and Keyword-Driven) to leverage benefits of both, ensuring flexibility and scalability in automation.


84. How can you maximize or minimize a browser window in Selenium?

Answer:
Use driver.maximize_window() to maximize and driver.minimize_window() to minimize. These methods adjust the browser window’s size as needed.


85. What is the role of annotations in automation frameworks?

Answer:
Annotations, like @Test or @BeforeSuite, define the role and order of method execution in frameworks such as TestNG or JUnit, guiding the test flow and setup/teardown procedures.


86. What is Selenium’s default timeout for wait?

Answer:
Selenium’s default timeout for Implicit Wait is 0 seconds. However, for Explicit Waits, the timeout is defined by the user when creating the WebDriverWait instance.


87. How can you fetch the title of a web page using Selenium?

Answer:
Use the title attribute of the WebDriver instance. For instance, pageTitle = driver.title retrieves the title of the current web page.


88. How do you handle a scenario where an element is not clickable at its point in Selenium?

Answer:
Possible solutions include:

  1. Using JavaScript to click the element.
  2. Employing ActionChains to move to the element and click.
  3. Waiting for overlays to disappear before clicking.

89. How can you simulate keyboard inputs in Selenium?

Answer:
The send_keys method allows simulation of keyboard inputs. For special keys like ENTER or TAB, you can use from selenium.webdriver.common.keys import Keys and element.send_keys(Keys.ENTER).


90. What is TestNG and how is it beneficial for automation?

Answer:
TestNG is a testing framework inspired by JUnit. It provides features like annotations, parallel test execution, and parameterized testing, enhancing the automation suite’s structure and readability.


91. How can you capture a screenshot in Selenium?

Answer:
Use the get_screenshot_as_file method. For instance, driver.get_screenshot_as_file('screenshot.png') captures the current screen and saves it as ‘screenshot.png’.


92. How do you deal with AJAX calls in Selenium?

Answer:
AJAX calls can be dealt with using Explicit Waits. WebDriverWait combined with expected conditions like element_to_be_clickable can ensure that elements load after the AJAX call completes.


93. How do you deal with multi-language websites in automation?

Answer:
Use locators that are language-independent, like IDs or specific CSS selectors. Alternatively, handle language changes through configurations or by fetching the current language from the website’s settings.


94. How can you fetch HTML source of a web element?

Answer:
Use the get_attribute method with ‘outerHTML’. For instance, elementHTML = element.get_attribute('outerHTML') retrieves the element’s HTML source.


95. What is the purpose of using test listeners?

Answer:
Test listeners monitor the execution of tests and provide hooks for specific events, like test success or failure. They help in custom actions like logging, taking screenshots, or reporting.


96. How do you identify elements using XPath in Selenium?

Answer:
XPath is a language for navigating XML documents. In Selenium, it’s used to locate web elements using XML paths. Example: element = driver.find_element_by_xpath("//tagname[@attribute='value']").


97. How do you handle authentication pop-ups in Selenium?

Answer:
Use the Alert class in Selenium. For instance, alert = driver.switch_to.alert and then alert.authenticate('username', 'password') to handle basic authentication pop-ups.


98. What is the significance of using Maven with Selenium?

Answer:
Maven, a build and project management tool, automates the project’s build lifecycle. With Selenium, it helps manage dependencies, run tests in a structured manner, and integrates with CI/CD pipelines.


99. How do you validate dropdown values in Selenium?

Answer:
Using the Select class, fetch all options with all_selected_options. Iterate through the list of options to validate dropdown values based on test requirements.


100. What’s the difference between isEnabled and isSelected in Selenium?

Answer:
isEnabled checks if a web element is enabled or not, suitable for buttons or input fields. isSelected checks if elements like checkboxes or radio buttons are selected.