XPath Selenium Selectors

XPath Selenium Selectors

We can find the location of any element on a web page using XML path expressions. The basic syntax for XPath is shown below:

Example = //input[@id=’user-message‘]

Absolute and Relative XPath

Generally, in some test automation engineer interviews, I asked the difference between absolute and relative XPath. Actually, it is the answer is very easy.

Absolute XPath

  • It is a direct way to locate an element.
  • It is very brittle.
  • Starts with single slash “/” that means starting to search from the root.

Example: /html/body/div[2]/div/div[2]/div[1]/div[2]/form/div/input

Relative XPath

  • Starts from the middle of the HTML DOM.
  • Starts with a double slash “//” that means it can start to search anywhere in the DOM structure.
  • Shorter than Absolute XPath.
  • Less fragile.

Example: //div[@class=’form-group’]//input[@id=’user-message’]

Example: //*[@class=’panel-body’]//li[contains(text(),’entered in input field’)]

Writing Smart XPaths for Complex and Dynamic Elements

1) Writing XPath with Tag & Attribute & Value Trio

Example: //input[@id, ‘user-message’]


2) Writing XPath with contains()

It is very handy XPath Selenium locator and sometimes it saves the life of a test automation engineer. When an attribute of an element is dynamic, then you can use contains() for the constant part of the web element but also you can use contains() in any condition when you need.

Example: //input[contains(@id, ‘er-messa’)]


3) Writing XPath with starts-with

This method checks the starting text of an attribute. It is very handy to use when the attribute value changes dynamically but also you can use this method for non-changing attribute values.

Example: //input[starts-with(@id, ‘user’)]

4) Writing XPath with Chained XPaths Declerations

We can chain multiple relative XPath declarations with “//” double slash to find an element location as shown below.

Example: //div[@class=’form-group’]//input[@id=’user-message’]

5) Writing XPath with “and Statement

In this method, we use two interrogation conditions such as A and B and return a result-set as shown below:

Example: //*[@id=’user-message’ and @class=’form-control’]

6) Writing XPath with text()

We can find an element with its exact text.

Example: .//label[text()=’Enter message’]


Automation Test Life Cycle

Once you start automating test script you will get this work often. We talk about life cycle it mean end to end picture of that scenario, like we have a life cycle for development, for manual testing similarly we have in Automation as well. Today in this post we will discuss Automation test life cycle in short ATLC.

You all must be familiar with SDLC ( Software development life cycle ), STLC ( Software test life cycle ), so lets discuss ATLC ( Automation test life cycle ).

Please refer  below image is the ATLC (Automation test life cycle diagram)

Automation test life cycle has 6 section

1- Automation feasibility analysis

2- Test Plan/Test Design

3- Environment Setup/Test lab setup

4-Test Script development/ Automation test case development

5-Test script execution

6- Generate test result / Analyses of  result


Lets start  each of the phase of Automation test life cycle

1- Automation feasibility analysis

  • The main objective of this phase will be to check feasibility of automation. 
  • Which test case can be automated and how we can automate them.
  • Which module of your application can be tested and which can not be automated
  • Which tools we can use for our application (like Selenium, QTP, Sahi, OATS, Telrik etc) and which tools will be best of our application
  • Take following factors into consideration like Team size, Effort and cost involved for tools which we will use.

2- Test Plan/Test Design

  • In this phase you have to create a Test plan by considering below point into considerations.
  • Fetch  all the manual test case from test management tool that which TC has to automate.
  • Which framework to use and what will be advantage and disadvantage  of the framework which we will use.
  • Create a test suite for Automation test case in Test Management tool.
  • In test plan you can mention background, limitation, risk and dependency between application and tools.
  • Approval from client/ Stack holders.

3- Environment Setup/Test lab setup 

By name itself you can understand that we need to setup machine or remote machine where our test case will execute.

  • In this section you can mention how many machine you want.
  • What should be the configuration in terms of hardware and software

4- Test Script development/ Automation test case development

In this phase you have to start develop automation script and make sure all test script is running fine and should be stable enough.

  • Start creating test script based on your requirement
  • Create some common method or function that you can reuse throughout your script
  • Make your script easy, reusable,well structured and well documented so if third person check your script then he/she can understand your scripts easily.
  • Use better reporting so in case of failing you can trace your code
  • Finally review your script and your script should be ready before consumption.

5 – Test script execution
Now its time for execution of test scripts, in this phase you have to execute all your test script.
Some points to remember while execution

  • Your script should cover all the functional requirement as per test case.
  • Your script should be stable so it should run in multiple environment and multiple browsers (depends on your requirement)
  • You can do batch execution also if possible so it will save time and effort.
  • In case of failure your script should take screen shots.
  • If test case is failing due to functionality, you have to raise a bug/defect.

 6- Generate test result / Analyses of  result

This is the last phase of Automation test life cycle in which we will gather test result and will share with team/client/stack holders.

  • Analyze the output and calculate how much time it take to complete the testcase.
  • You should have good report generation like XSLT report, TestNG report, ReporterNG etc.

Selenium Interview Questions

What is Automation Testing?

Automation testing or Test Automation is a process of automating the manual process to test the application/system under test. Automation testing involves the use of a separate testing tool which lets you create test scripts which can be executed repeatedly and doesn’t require any manual intervention.

What are the benefits of Automation Testing?

Benefits of Automation testing are:

  • Supports execution of repeated test cases
  • Aids in testing a large test matrix
  • Enables parallel execution
  • Encourages unattended execution
  • Improves accuracy thereby reducing human-generated errors
  • Saves time and money

Why should Selenium be selected as a test tool?


  • is a free and open source
  • have a large user base and helping communities
  • have cross Browser compatibility (Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari etc.)
  • have great platform compatibility (Windows, Mac OS, Linux etc.)
  • supports multiple programming languages (Java, C#, Ruby, Python, Pearl etc.)
  • has fresh and regular repository developments
  • supports distributed testing

What is Selenium? What are the different Selenium components?

Selenium is one of the most popular automated testing suites. Selenium is designed in a way to support and encourage automation testing of functional aspects of web-based applications and a wide range of browsers and platforms. Due to its existence in the open source community, it has become one of the most accepted tools amongst the testing professionals.

Selenium is not just a single tool or a utility, rather a package of several testing tools and for the same reason, it is referred to as a Suite. Each of these tools is designed to cater different testing and test environment requirements.

The suite package constitutes of the following sets of tools:

  • Selenium Integrated Development Environment (IDE) – Selenium IDE is a record and playback tool. It is distributed as a Firefox Plugin.
  • Selenium Remote Control (RC) – Selenium RC is a server that allows a user to create test scripts in the desired programming language. It also allows executing test scripts within the large spectrum of browsers.
  • Selenium WebDriver – WebDriver is a different tool altogether that has various advantages over Selenium RC. WebDriver directly communicates with the web browser and uses its native compatibility to automate.
  • Selenium Grid – Selenium Grid is used to distribute your test execution on multiple platforms and environments concurrently.

What are the testing types that can be supported by Selenium?

Selenium supports the following types of testing:

  • Functional Testing
  • Regression Testing

What are the limitations of Selenium?

Following are the limitations of Selenium:

  • Selenium supports testing of only web-based applications
  • Mobile applications cannot be tested using Selenium
  • Captcha and Barcode readers cannot be tested using Selenium
  • Reports can only be generated using third-party tools like TestNG or JUnit.
  • As Selenium is a free tool, thus there is no ready vendor support through the user can find numerous helping communities.
  • The user is expected to possess prior programming language knowledge.

When should I use Selenium IDE?

Selenium IDE is the simplest and easiest of all the tools within the Selenium Package. Its record and playback feature make it exceptionally easy to learn with minimal acquaintances to any programming language. Selenium IDE is an ideal tool for a naïve user.

What are the different types of locators in Selenium?

The locator can be termed as an address that identifies a web element uniquely within the webpage. Thus, to identify web elements accurately and precisely we have different types of locators in Selenium:

  • ID
  • ClassName
  • Name
  • TagName
  • LinkText
  • PartialLinkText
  • Xpath
  • CSS Selector

What is the difference between assert and verify commands?

Assert: Assert command checks whether the given condition is true or false. Let’s say we assert whether the given element is present on the web page or not. If the condition is true then the program control will execute the next test step but if the condition is false, the execution would stop and no further test would be executed.

Verify: Verify command also checks whether the given condition is true or false. Irrespective of the condition being true or false, the program execution doesn’t halt i.e. any failure during verification would not stop the execution and all the test steps would be executed.

What is an XPath?

XPath is used to locate a web element based on its XML path. XML stands for Extensible Markup Language and is used to store, organize and transport arbitrary data. It stores data in a key-value pair which is very much similar to HTML tags. Both being markup languages and since they fall under the same umbrella, XPath can be used to locate HTML elements.

The fundamental behind locating elements using XPath is the traversing between various elements across the entire page and thus enabling a user to find an element with the reference of another element.

What is the difference between “/” and “//” in Xpath?

Single Slash “/” – Single slash is used to create Xpath with absolute path i.e. the xpath would be created to start selection from the document node/start node.

Double Slash “//” – Double slash is used to create Xpath with relative path i.e. the xpath would be created to start selection from anywhere within the document.

When should I use Selenium Grid?

Selenium Grid can be used to execute same or different test scripts on multiple platforms and browsers concurrently so as to achieve distributed test execution, testing under different environments and saving execution time remarkably.

How do I launch the browser using WebDriver?

The following syntax can be used to launch Browser:

What is a framework?


The framework is a constructive blend of various guidelines, coding standards, concepts, processes, practices, project hierarchies, modularity, reporting mechanism, test data injections etc. to pillar automation testing.

What are the advantages of Automation framework?

The advantage of Test Automation framework

  • Reusability of code
  • Maximum coverage
  • Recovery scenario
  • Low-cost maintenance
  • Minimal manual intervention
  • Easy Reporting

Java Interview Questions:

  1. Difference between Overloading and over riding

Method over Loading:

  • Method Overloading is performed with in Class
  • In Case of method overloading, Parameter is deferent
  • Return type can be same or different in method overloading. But you must have to  change the parameter.


Method overriding:

  • Method overriding occurs in two Classes that have Is-A (inheritance) relationships.
  • In Case of method overriding, parameter must be same.
  • Return Type must be same



Importance of Finally?

Finally block that used to execute important code such as closing connection, stream etc


Difference between public, private, protect?


Manual Testing Syllabus

  1. SDLC and SDLC Phases
  • Requirements Phase
  • Analysis Phase
  • Design phase
  • Coding Phase
  • Testing phase
  • Installation


  1. SDLC Models
  • Waterfall Model.
  • V Model
  • Agile Model.
  • Prototype Model.
  • Spiral Model
  • Hybrid Model


  1. Software Testing Methodologies
  • White Box Testing
  • Black Box Testing
  • Grey Box Testing


  1. White Box Testing.
  • Path Testing
  • Loop Testing
  • Condition Testing
  • Performance Testing WBT
  • Memory Testing WBT


  1. Black Box Testing
    1. Functional Testing
      • Component Testing
      • Integration Testing
      • System Testing
      • User Acceptance Testing.
      • Sanity/Smoke Testing.
      • Regression Test.
    2. Non Functional Testing
      • Performance Testing.
      • Compatibility Testing.
      • Security Testing.
      • Recovery Testing.
      • Installation Testing.
      • Adhoc Testing.
    3. Globalization Testing
      • I18N Testing.
      • L1ON Testing.


  1. Software Testing Life Cycle
  • Understand the requirements/System study
  • Write Test Plan
  • Write Test Cases
  • Traceability Matrix
  • Test Execution
  • Defect Tracking
  • Prepare test execution report(TER)
  • Retrospect Meeting


  1. Testing Techniques
  • ECP
  • BVA
  • Error Guessing


  1. Defect Tracking Tools (Learn & Implement)
  • TFS