December 29, 2014

TestTrack Web Challenge Part 3: Pro Tips

Helix ALM
Well, here it is folks. The one you’ve been waiting for. Part 3 of my TestTrack Web challenge. I know for a fact that, had there been a physical line, people would be lining up to read this like they lined up for the iPhone 6! To be honest, the tips I am about to share aren’t really anything new. They are, however, transformative if you decide to take the TestTrack Web challenge and only use the web client for your daily tasks. When I discovered some of these tips it was like that ‘yes moment’ when everything changes and you can see clearly! blog2 So enough bloat text. Here’s the breakdown of my favorite tips will improve your TestTrack Web experience just as they’ve improved mine:

ProTip #1: Use bookmarks

blog3I’m the dog getting smacked by the cat of coolness, AKA ‘Bookmarks’ OK, I know this seems like a no-brainer, but before I thought of it, I was completely at the mercy of using the left navigation for everything. Don’t get me wrong, this gets you to testing, issue tracking, requirements, folders, and reports. However, it can sometimes take a few extra clicks to get to where you’re going. For example if I’m viewing the Folders list and a co-worker asks me about a specific requirement, I have to: 1) Click the Requirement link, 2) Click the Requirements list tab, 3) Search for the requirement or filter the list to what I want to view, 4) View/edit the requirement to see the data. That’s around 3-4 clicks just to view an item for a five-minute conversation. Then, I have to travel back to the Folders list to view what I was looking at previously. Talk about a time killer. In the native client, I simply view the Requirements list and I’m right there. If I have a toolbar set up, this process takes 1-2 clicks max! As I’ve always said, "The TestTrack Web client is not lacking in features. It has different features." Here is where bookmarks come in. Using your web browser, you can create bookmarks for pretty much every window location in the TestTrack web client. Using bookmarks, I quickly move between filtered item lists to see exactly what I want to. Here’s my bookmark dropdown: Blog4

ProTip #2: Write test cases on the Text tab

OK, we’ve got to have a talk. TestTrack has two different ways to write test cases in the native client. The first way uses the default ‘grid view’. This is the respectable way: it gives you access to everything in a clear ordered table. All you see are your steps and that’s it. Blog 5 But if you haven’t noticed, I like to live life on the wild side. That’s why I use the ‘text view’. Blog 6 This view allows me to quickly write out all of my steps and expected results. No more buttons for adding steps and comments. Nope, I’m freestyling it using my quick set of step codes: Blog 7 These codes are always available on the Text View tab in test cases. Simply expand the ‘Show markup codes’ control and start living life on the edge. Plus, this makes copying and pasting an entire group of steps super easy!

 ProTip #3: Use item reports

I know I’ve mentioned reports in the past when dealing with writing test cases, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be used for other purposes. Just today, I was running a test run and I noticed the Description had a lot of information that was difficult to view in the normal view: Blog 8 I couldn't scroll horizontally without scrolling down out of the data at the top of the field. This makes viewing rather hard. While I could view the entire WYSIWYG field in an expanded editor, I felt this approach would become time consuming when switching between multiple test runs. The ‘better way’ of viewing multiple items at once, especially with large amounts of data in a specific field, is to use the Reports option for a selected item: Blog 9 The generated reported allows quick scrolling between items and helps me decipher which test run I want to run first:  Blog 10

Pro Tip #4: Have an open mind

I’ve been using the web client for my main TestTrack use for the past several months now and I cannot recommend it enough. TestTrack Web is different from the native client. So, just because you could do a task in the native client one specific way does not mean that will be the most effective way to perform that task using the web client. Because TestTrack Web is different, you will need to perform basic daily tasks differently. At first, it can be frustrating making the changes needed to be efficient in the web client. However, if you take the time to do this, I can honestly say you will not regret it!