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Testing Electron Apps: Looking for an Automation Solution

Anna Thorsen

Anna Thorsen

Functional testing in Electron applications is no easy task. On the one hand, slow manual testing prevents businesses from releasing new features at speed, and on the other, test automation can lead to maintenance issues.

Navigating the solutions for testing Electron requires careful consideration. With the right approach, you can speed up releases to keep your competitive edge in a fast-moving market.

Related reading: the challenge of electron testing

Whether you’re starting out with Electron testing, or you’re looking for a new solution, we’ll explain what you should look for in an automation solution.

Commercial tool or automation framework?

There are many options available when choosing an automation solution. But it is the solution that you choose that will impact how efficient your testing is, and the quality of your Electron application.

Fragmented market - Open-source or Licensed


Frameworks are considered to be self-built automation suites. Some businesses use open-source tools like Selenium to build their framework.

While you can create a framework that fulfills the unique needs of your business, it is normally built for one application type in particular. This makes it difficult to scale your testing. Especially when your application integrates with external software.

The heavy coding required to build a framework takes a lot of work to maintain. It can become a costly activity because it requires the work of developers, and in some cases, testers with programming skills.

Related reading: test automation frameworks: why they fail

Commercial test automation tools

The budget and resources you have available will dictate the type of commercial test automation tool you choose. From code-based or low-code options that require coding knowledge, to codeless tools that require no coding experience. More on that in the next section.

Code or no code automation for Electron?

Choosing whether to go for a code-based or codeless solution entirely depends on your budget, available resources, and upper management buy-in. There are essentially three buckets for automation. Heavy-code, low-code, and no-code. Below we explain the basic knowledge requirements and maintenance efforts for each.

Fragmented market - Code, Low-code, No code

Code-based automation

This automation is built by people who can program. In testing, this profile is difficult to find as developer resources aren’t available to build automated tests for the user interface. Instead, they are expected to build new features. That's why this process is done by business users or testers, which makes onboarding longer.

You should also expect heavy maintenance. With every change to the user interface, test scripts have to be updated or they will cause false positives, even if the interface is bug-free.

Low-code test automation

Low-code technology uses a combination of drag and drop visual automation and coding. This mix lets technical and non-technical users build automation. The visual side allows non-programmers to automate, while the more complex cases require coding knowledge.

It is a useful tool for moving development projects along the line faster. To get the most out of this tool, you’ll need a dedicated person at hand to code the more complicated tests.

Codeless test automation

Here, the threshold for building automation is lowered. Both technical and non-technical users can automate a user interface. Like low-code, it considerably speeds up development by completely removing the need to script.

Tools like Leapwork also make it possible to automate across applications, whether your application is on the web, on a desktop, or with legacy platforms.

Related reading: low-code vs. no-code test automation?

Why codeless automation can help with Electron testing

Better user experience. By adopting a more efficient and effective QA arm, your test coverage will improve. And in return, you will minimize the risk of downtime, protect business continuity, and produce a better customer experience.

Faster release cycles. Codeless automation results in faster release cycle, enabling organizations relying on Electron to keep up with the pace of change. This keeps you within fast-moving competitive landscapes, or lets you outpace competition altogether.

Highly productive QA and developer workforce. By removing the barrier to entry for test automation, and not relying on the need to code for functional testing, your team can focus on delivering high-quality innovative capabilities to the market.

Why should an Electron organization consider Leapwork?

With a built-in Electron adapter and dedicated building blocks, Leapwork removes the complexity of automated testing for applications that use desktop and web paradigms.

A no-code visual approach makes it easier to build and scale test automation, making Leapwork’s tets resilient and easy to maintain.

Visual debugging makes it faster to identify and resolve issues, meaning QA teams, non-developers and business stakeholders alike can collaborate and contribute towards Electron test automation.

Want to learn more about the benefits of no-code test automation, and see Leapwork’s visual language in action? Check out our on-demand webinar.

Watch the no-code test automation webinar