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What is Selenium?

Selenium is a suite of software tools to automate web browsers.

  • A suite of Software Tools: means a set of one or more tools together.
  • Automate Web Browser: This means only automating web-based applications, not for window-based applications and desktop applications.

What is the Selenium Tool suite or Selenium Component?

  1. Selenium IDE: Selenium integrated Environment.
    • It is basically used for Recording and Playing.
    • It can be used only with FF Browsers. This means we can not use it with other browsers.
    • It is a FF Browsers Plugin, used to create and execute Test Cases.


    • Create Test Cases, Test Suite (We can Record Test Cases)
    • Enhance Test Cases (like add comments)
    • Execute Test Cases, Test Suite one by one.
    • Export Test Cases to any other supporting language (format) like Java, Ruby, etc.

    Note: Selenium IDE Test Cases default format is .html


    • It supports only FF Browser.
    • Only Selenese commands are used.
    • It does not support data-driven testing
    • It is not suitable for complex test case design.
  2. Selenium RC: Selenium Remote Control Server: It is also known as Selenium 1.
    • Selenium 1 = Selenium IDE + Selenium RC + Selenium Grid
    • It is a server and launches all the browsers, but one at a time.
    • It acts as an API and Library.
  3. Selenium Webdriver:
    1. The advanced version of Selenium RC is known as Selenium Webdriver.
    2. It is also called Selenium 2
    3. The limitations which are identified in Selenium RC are overcome and given added advantages.
    4. It supports various programming environments like JAVA, PHP, RUBY, etc.
    5. Using web element/ Objects/ locators/ properties web driver methods, we can create and execute Test Cases.
    6. It supports all the browsers like FF, Opera, IE, Safari & Chrome, etc.
    7. It supports various OS.
    8. We can use cross-browser testing.
    9. The default driver for selenium is FF Driver.


    1. Not necessary to start Selenium Server to run the Webdriver program.
    2. By default, it maximizes the browser and launches only the browser, not the command history browser.
    3. By default, Webdriver maintains the page load synchronization.
    4. If it is Page refresh, we need to handle it by using thread.sleep().
    5. We can use Webdriver & Selenium RC commands in a single class.
    6. Selenium Webdriver has a programming interface.

    Note: Selenium IDE has an IDE (menu, menu item available) but doesn’t have a programming interface.

    1. Programming Language knowledge is a must.
    2. It doesn’t generate detailed test reports. It generates only a summary (Pass/Fail)
  4. Selenium Grid:
    1. It doesn’t support creating Test Cases
    2. It doesn’t for Test Case design
    3. It is only for Test Execution
    4. It supports II Test Execution
    5. Maximum of 5 browsers can be launched
    6. It is used to save time.
    7. It is used to execute tests across different browsers and different OS.

    Note: Selenium Grid 2 supports Selenium RC test as well as Selenium Webdriver tests. It doesn’t support Selenium IDE.

  5. Selendroid:
    It is used to test Mobile applications on the Android platform.
    What are Testing Framework and other Tools used in Selenium Automation?

    • Testing Frameworks:
      1. JUnit Framework: It is a unit test framework. It is basically used by Developers. It doesn’t belong to Selenium Suite.
      2. TestNG Framework: It is used by Tester. It is also not a part of the Selenium Suite.
    • Tools:
      1. Eclipse:
        • It is used to create and execute Java programs.
        • To add Webdriver .Jar File
        • Install TestNG and JUnit Testing Framework.
      2. FireBug and Fire Path: Used as a plug-in with FF Browser to find out the web elements. We use inspect elements with IE.
      3. Browsers and Browser Drivers.

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