Simplified Test Automation Framework with Geb & Spock

Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability.
--Edsger W.Dijkstra

Simplified Test Automation with Geb

This post is about the Geb & Spock (Groovy) automation framework which makes test automation extremely simple and powerful. It helps in jump starting the test automation with all the cutting edge automation features ready ...

On using GEB & SPOCK framework, since beginning we are substantially far ahead compared to typical Selenium Webdriver Frameworks implemented in Java  which has some major issues and dilemmas as discussed below in detail:

Using JAVA for TEST Automation….
1).Java is verbose and very sophisticated and heavy language for the need of test automation .In short it is an overkill to use java for test automation.
2).But Java is Powerful!!!
 On the other hand Java is extremely robust and powerful with tons of features like OOPS, which cannot be used/ implemented holistically in scripting languages.

3).Unmatched Open Source Support: Java is being the most popular web language, has the virtually unlimited support for third party open source tools/utilities and APIs which we may lose if we step away from Java…

So there is a dilemma, we want to leave Java being overkill for test automation but at the same time it is full of features and with unmatched open source support.

So is there a way, we can use Java without actually using Java ???

Answer is Yes, Use Groovy.

  •        An agile and dynamic language for the Java Virtual Machine
  • ·         Makes modern programming features available to java developers with low learning   curve
  •          Provides the ability to statically type check and statically compile your code for    robustness and performance
  •          Share base syntax, type system, packages hierarchy with Java
  •          Every Gradle build file is a groovy script

 GEB Automation Framework:
Geb uses WebDriver to test web applications using either real browsers or the HtmlUnit library. What sets Geb apart from the competition is the jQuery-like syntax for querying your HTML pages and its built-in support for the Page Object pattern.
So the answer we found after long research across multiple tools/technologies is GEB.
GEB does all the heavy lifting under the hood and eases and improves the productivity of an automation developer many folds..!!!


  • ·         Power Of WebDriver
  • ·         Elegance of jQuery Selection
  • ·         Robustness of Page Object Modelling
  • ·         Expressiveness of Groovy


A typical GEB automation script...

The simple, elegant & intuitive scripting as above, makes test automation really easy ,fast and above all effective which further makes test automation maintenance simpler to update as required with minimal technical complexity which is really an aid as the test automation grows in terms of size and complexity over the period of time.

 SPOCK : The combination of  Groovy and GEB is really simple and elegant but the real power comes when it is combined with SPOCK which is an Groovy Unit testing framework (inspired from Junit) which adds lot of much required features in test automation ,out of the box without compromising the overall simplicity and design of Groovy and GEB framework.
There are couple of strong features which comes from SPOCK but it is not a comprehensive list:
1).Data Driven Testing utilising external data sources including text, CSV, excel & databases.
2) .Comprehensive Extensible Multi-level status reporting in HTML,XML and plain text formats
3).Detailed Logs and stack traces for quick root cause analysis in Debugging
4).Power Assertions
5).Screenshot Capturing & Screen scraping for capturing DOM structures for later analysis.

Selenium Webdriver: Under the hood GEB uses powerful selenium webdriver APIs which does not need any introduction in the test automation world .In fact it has become the de facto standard across industry. GEB uses the all the power  inherit in the selenium webdriver API without exposing the complexity to the end User.

Cross Browser Support: The framework has been designed to specially encounter the most pressing problem in test automation-Cross browser Support. It supports execution on all the standard prevailing browser including IE, Firefox and Chrome and more. It also supports headless browser execution for quick turnaround for build verifications and smoke test suites.

Seamless Integration With CI(Jenkins): It has been designed to support CI execution which has been tested and proven with large scale test automation with Jenkins which is the standard CI tool for the industry.  In the same way it can be integrated with other CI tools as it supports extensively multiple build tools including Maven & Gradle which helps to provide plug and play solutions for most CI test environments.


Cloud Based Test Execution With Browser Stack & Sauce Labs: It has been completely integrated with BrowserStack & saucelabs, which can be utilized over the air for quick build verifications or large automation suite in any desired environment having support for Cross Platform and cross browsers including Windows, MAC, Linux with IE, Firefox and Chrome browsers.

 Maven:  Apache Maven is a software project management and comprehension tool. Based on the concept of a project object model (POM), Maven can manage a project's build, reporting and documentation from a central piece of information.
This Framework supports complete automation building, dependency management and project creation using Maven which can also be utilized for smooth CI as well as local execution setups across multiple systems.

Gradle :  is a project automation tool that builds upon the concepts of Apache Ant and Apache Maven and introduces a Groovy-based domain-specific language (DSL) instead of the more traditional XML form of declaring the project configuration. Gradle takes the build automation capability to next level from the Ant & Maven with the grace and easiness of Groovy.
This framework works with Gradle completely and can be integrated with variety of tools further using Gradle seamlessly and quickly.

Conclusion: Synergy which comes with integration of all these tools & components, significantly helps to jump start the test automation in most of the settings right away which in turn accelerate the overall testing process.


Popular posts from this blog

Testing Webservice with SoapUI Having Windows Authentication

Data Driven Testing Using Selenium -WebDriver in Python

How to Re-run Failed Scenarios in Cucumber