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Manually Directing the Execution of your Test with Ask and Answer

Testing is not always an entirely automated or entirely manual task. Under many conditions, combining the two approaches might be the most efficient or reasonable way to properly test an application. eggPlant Functional includes several useful commands that allow a tester to manually direct the specifics of an automated test during test execution.

The Ask and Answer family of commands allow the tester to make decisions about test inputs and branching behavior on demand, when the requirements of the application or test are too complex to be reasonably automated. The commands generate dialog boxes in eggPlant Functional or in the operating system to prompt the tester to make the decisions at the appropriate times.

These commands leverage the it variable in order to feed the tester’s decision back into the test.


The Answer command generates a prompt that allows the tester to choose from a set of pre-defined options. Answer is useful when the tester must make a careful decision about whether a complex interface in the application under test is rendering or behaving properly, or when the tester wants dynamic control over which direction the test follows in a branching scenario.


Answer example


The Ask command prompts the tester with a field in which she can provide the string of her choice. This command can be helpful for inputting custom log messages or passwords into a test.


Ask example

Ask file/folder and Answer file/folder

Ask file/folder and Answer file/folder use the operating system’s local file explorer to aid in selecting files for input, or locations to save output.

Ask File

Ask file/folder and Answer file/folder

Additional Information

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Ask and Answer
Ask file/folder and Answer file/folder 


Connected Cars 2014 provides food for thought

Soon I will be driven to work catching up on emails and listening to my favourite music, traffic flowing freely as I relax with the horrors of commuting a distant memory. No, I have not been nominated as the UK’s next European Commissioner! This is the vision of the near future from the recent Connected Cars 2104 conference in Amsterdam that I attended with Tim Haythorne. Tim handles a number of our key European accounts in the Automotive, Defence and Engineering sectors. Read more…

Automation with eggPlant Functional – a user’s view

It is always exciting to receive positive feedback on any one of our products in the eggPlant range of software quality tools. And this is what we came across on the Portland Webworks blog.

Titled ‘Automation with eggPlant Functional‘,  Brett Amundsen, QA Engineer at Portland Webworks discusses the core features and benefits of eggPlant Functional. From the patented intelligent image-recognition technology to simple scripting language and ease-of-use, Brett provides simple examples of an eggPlant Functional script. 

Thanks Brett for the mention – we look forward to seeing more advanced scripts as promised in your next post!

Have a read here:


Summer Reception 2014, London

The TestPlant Summer Reception in London, on Wednesday 25 June, was a roaring success. 

Good weather, delicious food, some excellent British sparkling wine and ‘Fake Lager’ beer made for a lovely celebration in recognition of our new offices in San Francisco and Shanghai. 

As George Mackintosh, TestPlant CEO, said in his speech, ‘what a mix of interesting people and what a way to celebrate the growth and expansion of TestPlant, we thank you for being part of our successful journey so far and look forward to some exciting years ahead’.

Thank you to everyone who came! Read more…

Test automation challenges for regulated industries

eggPlant tools are increasingly popular in highly regulated industry sectors with stringent quality requirements. I believe that is not a coincidence so I thought it would be interesting to pick apart the reasons why the eggPlant range is so effective for organisations that need to demonstrate standards compliance and to deliver systems of the highest quality and reliability; hopefully the two aims are in harmony! Read more…

TestPlant is exhibiting at The Public Sector Show 2014

Are you interested in exploring technology innovation for the public sector and best practice initiatives? Then the Public Sector Show is a must visit event, taking place on Tuesday 13 May 2014 at ExCeL London.

Are you looking for an alternative to complex-to-use testing tools? Then visit us at stand 292 and take a look at the eggPlant range of software quality tools. Read more…

Pick and mix: Combining high-level and low-level automation

Gordon McKeown, Group Director of Product Management at TestPlant, discusses how mixing high-level automation with low-level automation can enhance mobile application load testing…

As published on Software Testing News.

The vast majority of mobile applications interact with remote services and those services should be thoroughly tested as part of the quality assurance process. To ensure an app has been comprehensively tested, it is important to take a holistic approach that covers the client technologies (mobile devices, desktops etc.) as well as the servers and network infrastructure. Read more…

Rational UK Systems & Software Engineering Symposium

TestPlant will be taking part at Rational UK Systems & Software Engineering Symposium, on 12 March 2014, in London.

Industry experts will discuss applying system engineering best practices with measurable benefits, and provide customer examples. With a Key Note presentation from Alan Harding, President Elect of INCOSE & President of INCOSE, UK, this is an event not to be missed!

You also have a chance to meet our TestPlant Ltd representatives:

  • Director for Customer Solutions – Ian Parker
  • Territory Account Manager – Irina Berdisa

For more information on how eggPlant integrates with IBM’s Rational solutions – click here.

eggPlant speeds up testing in Windows Mobile embedded projects


In this article, TechTarget’s SearchSoftwareQuality editors ask if there is a way to execute automated embedded software testing on a Windows Mobile portable data terminal (PDT) device. Read more…

Join us at the IBM Rational Systems and Software Symposium – Detroit

TestPlant’s Principal Technical Account Manager, Rick Peattie*, will be presenting “Test automation for the software centric vehicle” at the IBM Rational Systems and Software Symposium, Detroit on March 25th, 2014.
The rapid growth of software based components within vehicles is challenging QA professionals and test tool vendors alike. In-vehicle electronic interfaces including In Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) and control systems typically have user interfaces that cannot be automated using conventional object based scripting. TestPlant’s eggPlant Functional test tool integrates with IBM Rational Quality Manager, employing unique two-system image based automation that can test the vast majority of graphical user interfaces. Read more…