166: Running Tests in Parallel in the Cloud with Nikolay Advolodkin

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Is your automation test suite taking hours to run? Are you having issues with debugging and analyzing automated test failures? In this episode we’ll Test Talk with Nikolay Advolodkin, the founder of UltimateQA about the pros and cons of a few test cloud providers as well and some other test automation awesomeness.

About Nikolay Advolodkin

Nikolay Advolodkin Headshot

Nikolay Advolodkin is a prolific Automation Test & Quality Assurance Engineer. Currently, he is the CEO and Software Testing Instructor at UltimateQA.com. He has been voted as one of 33 Test Automation Leaders to follow in 2017 by TechBeacon.com. He is also the #1 Selenium Webdriver instructor in the world as rated by Udemy.com. Nikolay is a frequent Contributor for the blog, SimpleProgrammer.com and a speaker at Automation Guild 2017.When he isn’t immersed in the realm of coding and all-things QA, Nikolay Advolodkin enjoys self-improvement and aims to hone his vast skill set daily, all while teaching online students how to master automated software testing.

Quotes & Insights from this Test Talk

  • I do feel like browsers stack is a lot more buggy than SauceLabs from the time that I've used browsers stock I've had a number of different issues with them.
  • Browser Stack –their UI when you open it up is a little bit different versus Sauce Labs in browser stack. If you look at BrowserStacks UI I actually prefer a little bit more because when you look at all of their screenshots both of the tools give you automatic screenshot capabilities so every time you perform a selenium command you know driver find element or in clicking an element any kind of that stuff they automatically capture screen shot for you. In browser stack when they capture screenshots for it actually reads like plain-English where SauceLabs is harder to read.
  • I also notice as well SauceLabs is usually the innovator. They're usually ahead of the game trying to create some new feature and then Browsers Stack usually comes a little bit behind.
  • So I guess to me in terms of using a service like SauceLabs versus testing locally I think there's some advantages and disadvantages to both. Overall I think for me I do prefer using a cloud service but then you also kind of have to weigh because they do get a little bit pricey. So you kind of have to weigh the advantages and disadvantages. Let me talk about the advantages first so the advantages of all the cloud services are really awesome and Sauce labs, for example, does a really good job of implementing all of them. First, you get automatic video recording. So what that means is whenever you instantiate your remote web driver and then you hook it up to the SauceLabs hub as soon as your test starts running you get an automatic video record and you don't have to do anything you don't have to turn on anything you don't have to add any actual lines of code or just the video starts working for you. And then they capture the video for every single test and they store all the videos for you. And then there's like a history in archives of all of your results and then you can go back in time and then view the videos you know whenever stuff fails it's really useful to help you debug especially with functional GUI tests. And both of the services offer that.
  • So if you have the need to test against multiple devices these cloud services make it so easy. Because think about it if you need to run against some of the top browsers right chrome maybe Safari maybe Firefox if you want it to run that locally. That means you have to install all of those browsers on your on your device on your hardware locally to be able to run it. And that could be a pain. And then of course if you're trying to run it in parallel that means you need to maintain that many virtual machines. You need to maintain that many browsers on every single one you need to maintain the appropriate versions. It becomes a huge mess and these cloud services like Sauce labs they make it so easy for you because all you have to do is pass in a couple of capabilities.
  • What's the one piece of actionable advice that I can give to all of you guys. At least in my point of view, I think the thing that has helped me the most in my career and has given me the most bang for my buck was to never stop learning. Regardless of what it is, whatever field you're in, I think it's really important to always take a little bit of time out of your day to learn something new. Not just learning on your nine to five job, but to maybe take half an hour, maybe an hour out of your day to just improve your skills even further.


  • Nikolay's Automation Guild on Using the Page Object Pattern to Drastically Stabilize Your Automation

Connect with Nikolay Advolodkin

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