Desktop Testing Tutorial

What You Will Learn

  • How to create a repository, test project and test module
  • How to open a desktop application using start program action
  • How to capture the GUI controls of a desktop app using Interface Viewer
  • How to quickly write your first test by simply drag-dropping interface elements on to the test module
  • How to execute the test and review the test result

Create your own repository

  1. Open TestArchitect IDE
  2. Right click on the root node and select New Repository Connection
  3. Type in MyDesktopTest as the new name for your repository


By default, a Repository Server instance will be installed on your local machine when you install TestArchitect. Therefore, localhost:53400 is always there for you to select. However, if you set up a remote Repository Server that can be shared with your team on a different machine, enter that machine's IP and the appropriate port into the Server field, e.g.

  1. Log into the newly created repository

Now you have a brand new repository of your own. To learn more about TestArchitect repositories, check out this article.

Create your first test project

  1. Right click on the MyDesktopTest repository and select New Project
  2. Fill in the name of your project, e.g. FirstDesktopProject
  3. Fill in the 3-char abbreviation for your project, e.g. DES
  4. Click Create

This project will be the central database to store all of your test assets later on.

Create a test module

  1. With TestArchitect IDE opened, log into the MyDesktopTest repository that you've created
  2. Expand the FirstDesktopProject project
  3. Right click on the Tests node > Select New Test Module > Name your test module as MyFirstTest

MyFirstTest test module will be our main test module of interest from now on.

Start the sample desktop app

  1. Open the MyFirstTest test module you have just created
  2. Use the start program action to open the Car Rental desktop app like below


The Car Rental desktop app (Java-based) is shipped together with TestArchitect. It usually locates at: C:\Program Files (x86)\LogiGear\TestArchitect\samples\CarRental\CarRental.exe or C:\Program Files\LogiGear\TestArchitect\samples\CarRental\CarRental.exe.

  1. Press F9 or click the Execute button on the Execute dialog to run the test module
  2. You'll see that the Car Rental program, specifically its Login dialog will popup

That's good! Now you can keep this Car Rental app running and return to TestArchitect IDE.

Capture the GUI controls

To start automating the GUI of Car Rental, you must first tell TestArchitect how to find those GUI controls on the screen. To do so, follow the steps below:

  1. Create a new interface entity and name it as LoginScreen like below
  1. Once the new interface entity is created, open the Interface Viewer tool from the toolbar
  2. Click the Hand toolbar button on Interface Viewer then click on the User name textbox to inspect its properties
  3. Double click on the User name node to capture it
  1. After you click the Save button on Viewer's toolbar, the locator for this User name textbox will be stored in the LoginScreen interface entity as below
  1. Feel free to save this LoginScreen interface entity by pressing Ctrl+S
  2. Repeat step 3, 4 and 5 for the Password textbox and the Login button
  3. At this point, you should have 3 interface elements captured and stored in LoginScreen interface entity as below
  1. Check in the entity into Repository Server by pressing F11


This check-in step is very important! Please make sure you check in the entity before proceeding to the next section.

Now you have created your first interface entity.

Write a test

We'll now create a test for the Login dialog of Car Rental desktop app. The goal of this test is to verify that a user with a wrong username/password pair cannot log into the system.

  1. After you check in the LoginScreen interface entity into Repository Server, you'll see the interface elements (UI controls) you previously captured on Explorer tree
  2. Make sure that MyFirstTest test module is currently open
  3. Drag and drop the user name interface element on to Column A of the spreadsheet
  4. TestArchitect automatically recommends that the most commonly used action for this textbox control is enter
  5. Select enter action then type invalid into the value argument
  1. Do the same for the password interface element
  2. Now drag and drop the login interface element on to Column A of the spreadsheet and select click action

All precondition steps are in place. Now we need to add a checkpoint or assertion to verify the expected behavior.

Create a checkpoint (assertion)

  1. Although we haven't added any checkpoint (assertion) yet, let's run the test to see what happens
  1. As you might notice, the Car Rental app displays an error message saying Invalid Username or Password and an OK button. This is an expected behavior

  2. To make sure that Car Rental always displays this correct message, we must capture the GUI controls on this dialog using Interface Viewer

    3.1. Create a new interface entity and name it MessageDialog

    3.2. Open Viewer and capture the GUI controls on the Message dialog (the error message and OK button)

    3.3. Save the interface entity MessageDialog


    3.4. Check in by pressing F11

  3. Go back to MyFirstTest test module, and do the following:

    4.1. Drag-drop the error-message (TAClass=label) into Column A of the spreadsheet

    4.2. Select check control property action

    4.3. Type caption into the property argument

    4.4. Type Invalid Username or Password. into the expected argument.

  1. Drag-drop the OK button from Explorer tree to Column A of the spreadsheet and select check control exists action
  2. At this point, you'll have a test module similar to the script below
start program C:\Program Files\LogiGear\TestArchitect\samples\CarRental\CarRental.exe
  window control value  
enter LoginScreen user name invalid  
enter LoginScreen password invalid  
  window control    
click LoginScreen login    
  window control property expected
check control property MessageDialog invalid username or password caption Invalid Username or Password.
  window control    
check control exists MessageDialog ok    

Now we've added the checkpoints and made the test more meaningful. Let's run the test.

Execute the test

  1. Click the Execute button on TestArchitect IDE's toolbar.
  2. Make sure that the Screenshot Recording feature is turned on.
  3. Click the Execute button on the Execute dialog and watch the test runs.

Once the test finishes, you'll see the test result automatically opened up.

Review the test result

  1. If you've followed the steps above precisely, you should see that the test has just passed.
  2. Click on View detailed results per test line to open the result details in a browser
  3. Expand the tree nodes to view the screenshots attached to each step.


The Screenshot Recording feature is a powerful secret weapon for reviewing what happened at runtime and debugging test failures.

Congratulations! You've completed the Desktop Testing Tutorial. Start applying what you have learned so far to automate more desktop apps. If you encounter any troubles or this guide is out-dated, please send us an email at

Last Updated: 5/2/2019, 12:45:31 PM