HP LeanFT (Lean Functional Testing) Overview – All Facts that will help you make a decision
LeanFT pronounced as ‘Lean Functional Testing’- the latest testing tool by HP, was unveiled in recently concluded HP discover 2015 held at Las Vegas.
HP LeanFT is supposed to the change the way testing is done giving more powers to a new breed of DevTesters. LeanFT is basically build for SDET (Software development engineer in Test) or DevTesters only.
So why another automation tool from HP when it has got UFT?
Were they missing something?
Were Competitors and New Tool Vendors cashing on lack of features in UFT?
We try to uncover more of LeanFT right here in this post.
The fact that HP LeanFT does not replace HP UFT and is built to create an integrated environment for Software Development answers most of the questions.
So before I start discussing about HP LeanFT, one more announcement at HP Discover which I wanted to bring attention to is about UFT 12.5 and BPT 12.5.
HP announced a major upgrade to Unified Functional Testing or UFT and HP BPT (Business process testing). HP UFT 12.5 and HP BPT 12.5 will also be launched at same time as LeanFT i.e in July 2015. HP UFT 12.5 will share the same license as HP LeanFT.
Let’s check what’s new in UFT 12.5 and then compare it with LeanFT.
HP UFT 12.5 complements LeanFT and not compete with it and a combination of both can be real solution to meeting the needs of business application agility.
UFT 12.5 with New Features and Enhancements
UFT, earlier known as QTP is an end to end business process testing tool with greater focus on graphical user interface testing (GUI testing). UFT serves to enhance the user experience by creating checkpoints and check functional aspects of the user interface of the application. The ability to test the API’s and components independently and then in an integrated environment makes it easier for Business analysts and Test automation engineers to automate the whole functionality and check for bugs.
Few Features of UFT that lets the test automation engineers automate the applications with ease and ensure quality are:
- Cross browser testing: ability to test the application in all major browsers
- Continuous Testing: with LeanFT plugin, test creation in C# or Java leads to continuous integration, continuous delivery along with continuous testing
- API and Web Service Testing : integrations with ease
- Mobile Application Testing: Integrate with HP Mobile Center and get best app quality
- Business Process Testing: Keyword driven and scriptless test automation with BPT
HP UFT 12.5 not only integrates with HP products like HP ALM, Quality center, mobile center and so on but also with Jenkins, SVN and GIT.
So what’s New in UFT 12.5 / BPT?
- Better User Interface : Keyword view enhancements and Lightweight HTML reports
- Browser testing made easy: Chrome and Firefox recording get an edge with Improved performance
- SiebelOpenUI: New object support
- BPT: Mobile support and recording of components in BTP test. Data use improvements.
- UFT Execution Engine: You don’t need the entire UFT IDE now
- Mobile Testing: Mobile test checkpoints and BPT integration for mobile
So let’s begin uncovering HP LeanFT – Lightweight, Powerful and Developer Oriented Testing Tool
In my previous post I had taken you through the journey of HP Functional Testing Tools and shown how things are moving towards Agility and DevOps.
It’s good to understand about Agility and DevOps before we move to LeanFT and why a behemoth like HP released a functional testing tool catering to these concepts.
What is Agility?
Dictionary.com defines Agility as: the power of moving quickly and easily; the ability to think and draw conclusions quickly; intellectual acuity.
So how does it relate to software testing?
The whole Agile principles in Software development started with Agile Manifesto. It states that:
Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
Working software over comprehensive documentation
Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
Responding to change over following a plan
For me, Agility brings the Dev, Ops and Test Teams together resulting in great products sticking to above principles.
What is DevOps?
Wikipedia defines DevOps perfectly. It states that: DevOps (a clipped compound of “development” and “operations”) is a software development method that stresses communication, collaboration, integration, automation, and measurement of cooperation between software developers and other information-technology (IT) professionals.
DevOps changes the complete cycle of entire Delivery timeline by bringing the Development, QA and Operations team together. This results in quicker deployment frequency, faster maintenance releases and improved reliability and security by virtue of QA teams being involved at every stage.
DevOps and Agile Development shares the same principles by granting more control to all the stakeholders and speeding up the whole process.
Why so much Attention to Agility and DevOps?
DevOps has been termed as an Evolution in making as it is not only brining the Dev and Ops team together from the siloes but the whole organization.
Traditionally, the Dev used to send the code and operations used to deploy it, simple right?
But there was always a cat and mouse game which used to go in background with hundreds of mails being exchanged.
Principles of DevOps brings the Dev and Ops at arm’s length and lets them focus on issues that really matter. Agile development puts additional pressure on Ops with more frequent deployment of code. To solve the problem, DevOps strives for cross-silo collaboration constantly, not only when things fail, which is the typical case in most agile driven organizations also.
So Operations is not treated as a separate unit but part of the whole development process.
Issues such as application stability, continuous monitoring, and creation of backups can be addressed immediately with this collaboration. Also Operations gets a better understanding of how the application actually works before it actually deploys it in production.
To achieve low lead times, Automation of build, deployment and testing is must and that’s what brings us to LeanFT.
LeanFT: Lean Functional Testing – ‘Shifting Left’ as HP Calls it.
Lean functional Testing by HP is a powerful developer-oriented testing tool build specifically for Agile and DevOps environment. It enables the core principles of continuous delivery, continuous integration and continuous delivery.
Best suited for Developers and DevTesters, it’s a boon for Agile and DevOps centric teams.
LeanFT continuous ahead with UFT concepts and adopts Test objects and descriptions using Object identification mechanisms of UFT.
LeanFT: Features, Technology support and how it works
LeanFT supports a wide range of AUT (Application under Test) technologies. It gives more power to the developers especially and is a great step towards agility and creating a DevTesters.
- You can now develop tests in Visual Studio using C#. Comes as a plugin to Visual studio.
- You can now develop test in Eclipse using Java. Comes as a plugin to Eclipse.
- Open source TDD and BDD frameworks like Cucumber, NUnit and JUnit can now be integrated.
- Support for Source control and Version control tools like GIT, SubVersion.
- Supports Jenkins Integration
- Concept of Application Models enables modeling of AUT and its objects
- AUT technologies support for Windows Standard, Web, .NET Windows forms, WPF, Mobile and Insight Image Recognition
With LeanFT, creating a test project/script is simple few step process:
- You create a testing project in choice of your IDE: Visual Studio or Eclipse.
- The projects is created with LeanFT libraries referenced and also testing framework libraries if installed.
- You them implement the test, add additional classes and build the project
- Using the internal Test Explorer you can run the tests to see the results
- You can now check the source in SCM and execute the tests in either CI system or ALM
How is it HP LeanFT different from Unified Functional Testing (UFT)?
(Source: saas.hp.com – HP LeanFT Overview)
UFT and LeanFT are more similar than different with same Test Objects concept of UFT. LeanFT also adopts and enhances UFT tools like SPY and Object Repositories.
- LeanFT does not give you Record and Playback feature like UFT. It’s scripting only in LeanFT.
- Visual API testing/ Web service testing will still require you to use UFT
- Business process testing(BPT) integration is only with UFT
- UFT supports 20+ platforms for legacy, desktop and mainframe etc while LeanFT supports the AUT’s listed above.
Which one to go for: HP UFT 12.5 or LeanFT?
HP UFT and LeanFT can be mixed and matched based on your company’s needs. So a combination of both can be what will actually lead to agility. But HP has given a set of options for users who are looking to start using LeanFT.
1. Good news is that the Existing UFT Customers get LeanFT for Free.
2. But in case you want to go Agile but do not want to spend on the full license fee of UFT, HP allows you to take LeanFT only with Runtime Engine. Runtime Engine enables you to distribute and execute UFT test scripts across different computers or virtual machines without the need for a full UFT license or installation.
3. Finally, small Dev/ test teams also have the option of just going for LeanFT for CI/CD
Converting scripts from UFT to LeanFT
That’s one thing which businesses might be thinking about when LeanFT was launched.
Do we have to migrate all our scripts to LeanFT now?
Will HP end support to UFT?
HP is not ending support to UFT.
As already stated, LeanFT is not a replacement but a companion of UFT. With release of UFT 12.5 it is set to become even better.
Answer to Migrating from HP UFT to LeanFT is both Yes and No for me.
UFT objects repository is already compatible with LeanFT, but that will still involve lots of manual intervention/rewriting to convert script to choice of your language C# (for Visual studio) and Java (For Eclipse).
So if you are planning to use your existing UFT scripts to be used by Developers / DevTesters in LeanFT creating a more integrate environment. Answer is YES.
This will help you adopt to LeanFT features quicker and make things quicker leading to agility.
But in case you do not plan to get your scripts executed by Dev team than it does not make sense to convert them.
A Quick search resulted in 2 companies offering the Migration solution from UFT to LeanFT:
- Gallop Solutions : A US based testing firm, they are an HP partner and also present at HP Discover where they released their migration tool – QuickLean
- Testing Performance: UK based firm with their tool xMigrate.
Not much detail is available about both of them. Will cover once they are fully released.
Concluding thoughts on LeanFT
With UFT 12.5, a new version of BPT and LeanFT, HP is trying to address everybody involved in SDLC. Those who are not happy with lack of support in Selenium will be happy to switch to UFT+LeanFT combination.
With no more of VBScript involved , it might be a steep learning curve for Testers who are accustomed to it, but Java and C# are better alternatives and will lead to more collaboration between Dev and Test Teams leading to CI, CD and CT.
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