Why Test Software?

If we do not test software we quickly create annoyed customers. Years of experience tells us that every line of software code can result in a bug. Java programmers tend to create unit tests for their software. An excellent practice but one which is often forgotten when testing front end functionality. Functional testing is left to expensive subject matter experts, often removed from the software development teams area of responsibility.  Working with colleagues migrating an Oracle Forms application to Oracle APEX we created low level tests for PL/SQL procedures and functions to ensure the PL/SQL code moved from the client to server. Lots on PL/SQL testing in various Oracle Blogs – I like to use SQL Developer...

Steven Feuerstein on Oracle PL/SQL: Recommendations for unit …

Mar 11, 2015 After investigating what’s there for PL/SQL testing, we took the idea to test it
with a dynamic language and developed our own tool. The new ..
So we have tests for server side code executed as PL/SQLin the Oracle database but what about testing the business functionality in the new Oracle APEX front end screens?
Selenium.org is where most Oracle APEX articles point you towards. Several platforms such as Apex ATAF and Ghost Inspector appear when you search for Selenium for Web based applications.  I am a fan of Opensource ‘free’ software but there comes a time on a commercial project when you need support, which must be paid for. Thus the decision to investigate using Ghost Inspector to test the new application web front end written in Oracle APEX. The fact that it is an APEX application is incidental, but a good Use Case.

Ghost Inspector

Ghost Inspector came about to improve on the laborious task of testing websites whereby a developer hand codes tests for a website and then a tester would download and install Selenium and record and execute the tests. Ghost Inspector enables a developer or tester to simply install a Chrome plugin, create a Ghost Inspector account and start to record flows around a website. These recorded flows are replayed and scheduled to repeat as and when required. Any change in behaviour between a recording and a replay is reported as a ‘Fail’ and is then investigated. As the website evolves the tests are rerecorded, a neat feature being that the tests can be modularised so that they do not need to be completely rerecorded.

Here is an example video of a test recording and a brief run through of the Ghost Inspector site – its all cloud based..

It is very easy to create a collection of test scripts and set them to run each night. The results are shared via email and are ready for review in the morning.  The free version of Ghost Inspector allows 100 test runs per month, probably not enough for a serious project. The next level is $79 per month for 10,000 test runs (as of April 2017).
A couple of other videos released by the Ghost Inspector team:


To summarise, if you need to test web based new softwqre applications you are creating it is certainly worth investigating Ghost Inspector. Yes, I am sure there are plenty of others but you can spend a lot of time on research..