Get Browser Information with Intern

By  on  

You know how you can't remember something your spouse feels is really important but you can remember every funny line from that movie you saw when you were 17?  That's how I feel after months of writing selenium tests using the Intern framework -- I've forgotten lots of important front-end stuff but I've uncovered loads of selenium issues and techniques to hack around them.

I initially wrote my tests using Firefox as the test browser.  Then I opened up my testing to Chrome and needed to adjust a whole bunch of stuff because Chrome doesn't reliably do things like Firefox, like element `click` vs. `enter` key press.  And don't ask me about concurrency issues.  Then today I had the bright idea of adding Safari to the mix.  In a word....f*ck.  A whole new world of issues cropped up.

One issue that Selenium + Safari has (one of dozens) is history / URL issues.  After doing loads of research and implementing every hack I could think of, I had this moment:

Fuck It

If there's a Selenium issue in a given browser that makes it impossible for a test to complete properly, there's no point in fighting it -- this case calls for simply passing the test instead of dealing with the annoyance of seeing a failure due to Selenium error.   But how do you get browser information within a test?


// From within a test function
console.log(this.remote.session.capabilities);

{
  'webdriver.remote.sessionid': 'f4dffffc-8d40-4e21-a862-459109ffabfc',
  browserName: 'safari',
  takesScreenshot: true,
  javascriptEnabled: true,
  version: '8.0.8',
  cssSelectorsEnabled: true,
  platform: 'MAC',
  secureSsl: true,
  remoteFiles: true,
  nativeEvents: false,
  rotatable: false,
  locationContextEnabled: false,
  webStorageEnabled: false,
  applicationCacheEnabled: false,
  supportsNavigationDataUris: true,
  supportsCssTransforms: true,
  supportsExecuteAsync: true,
  mouseEnabled: true,
  touchEnabled: false,
  dynamicViewport: true,
  shortcutKey: '',
  brokenDeleteCookie: false,
  brokenExecuteElementReturn: false,
  brokenExecuteUndefinedReturn: false,
  brokenElementDisplayedOpacity: false,
  brokenElementDisplayedOffscreen: false,
  brokenSubmitElement: true,
  brokenWindowSwitch: true,
  brokenDoubleClick: false,
  brokenCssTransformedSize: true,
  fixedLogTypes: false,
  brokenHtmlTagName: false,
  brokenNullGetSpecAttribute: false,
  brokenNavigation: true,
  brokenMouseEvents: true,
  brokenWindowPosition: true,
  brokenSendKeys: true,
  brokenCookies: true 
}

The session object on the remote provides information about the browser session, including the name (most important) as well as fixes provided by Intern.

In an ideal world you can write all of your Selenium tests in one format and it works within each browser....but we don't live in an ideal world, the same way we need browser hacks within our client side JavaScript.  Being able to get browser name and other information within a test, however, is just another super useful bit of information exposed by Intern!

Recent Features

  • By
    fetch API

    One of the worst kept secrets about AJAX on the web is that the underlying API for it, XMLHttpRequest, wasn't really made for what we've been using it for.  We've done well to create elegant APIs around XHR but we know we can do better.  Our effort to...

  • By
    CSS Animations Between Media Queries

    CSS animations are right up there with sliced bread. CSS animations are efficient because they can be hardware accelerated, they require no JavaScript overhead, and they are composed of very little CSS code. Quite often we add CSS transforms to elements via CSS during...

Incredible Demos

  • By
    Create a CSS Flipping Animation

    CSS animations are a lot of fun; the beauty of them is that through many simple properties, you can create anything from an elegant fade in to a WTF-Pixar-would-be-proud effect. One CSS effect somewhere in between is the CSS flip effect, whereby there's...

  • By
    Create Keyboard Shortcuts with Mousetrap

    Some of the finest parts of web apps are hidden in the little things.  These "small details" can often add up to big, big gains.  One of those small gains can be found in keyboard shortcuts.  Awesome web apps like Gmail and GitHub use loads of...

Discussion

  1. Pablo

    Nice to hear that I’m not the only one that feels that way at times. Make sure you get back to delivering awesome content in due time though! :D

Wrap your code in <pre class="{language}"></pre> tags, link to a GitHub gist, JSFiddle fiddle, or CodePen pen to embed!