Working with Keyword View – QTP Training Tutorial 2

This is the tutorial #2 in our QTP Training article series. 

=> Click Here For The QTP Training Tutorials Series

This article is going to give you an insight into the Keyword view of the QTP GUI. During this process, we are going to get a quick introduction to Actions, Object Hierarchy, and the basic columns in the keyword view.

Let’s start.

Working with Keyword View

Introduction to QTP Keyword View

There is a drop-down box at the top and it shows “Action 1”.

Keyword view Action 1

What does this mean?

Introduction to Actions: Tests in QTP are recorded in terms of actions. The action is nothing but a set of statements performing a sequence of actions.  Most often an action is simply a logical unit of modularity. The calls to one or more actions can be defined as a QTP test.

For Example, Let’s assume that in an online web-based email system, the user needs to login, compose and send an email and then logout, it is recommended that each of these operations is divided into 3 different actions although all of them can be written under one action.

‘Test Email’ will have:

Action2>Compose and send email
Action 3>Logout

The test is essential:
Call to Action1; Call to Action 2; Call to Action 3

If written in one action, the lines of the script would be large and difficult to manipulate and maintain. So the logical division is recommended. Also, as we move on further in our exploration of Actions we are going to understand how actions can be parameterized thereby enabling easy repetition of a certain action as many times as desired.

So when you create a new QTP test, it contains a call to one action, “Action 1”.

When we expand the drop-down, it shows Test Flow. For a test with multiple actions, it shows the sequence in which each action is called, thereby making the name, “Test Flow” self-explanatory. This drop-down not only displays the sequence of actions, but it also provides the option for the user to select or go-to a particular action to view and/or Edit.

There is also a “Reusable Actions” Folder view. For now, let’s just say that reusable actions can be used by multiple tests and multiple times in the same test where it was created. We will discuss in detail on how that can be achieved. Every action by default is reusable. This can be changed if need be.

Let’s take a little diversion here and talk a little bit about the Object recognition hierarchy in QTP.

Object Hierarchy:  If you have noticed in our example, the Agent Name and Password are displayed under the item Login. A point to note here is that QTP uses a tree hierarchy to store objects.

In our case, the Agent Name and Password are the child objects to the container object Login which is the Dialog. Container objects are the window, dialogue box in windows based environments and web pages in a web-based environment.

This is an example of the login Dialog of the flight’s application:

QTP login Dialog of the flights application

The container here is the Login dialog and the next level objects are Agent name, Password and the other buttons and images in the dialog. There are only 2 levels here. But there could be more levels, like – in this case, a browser is a container for page and page is a container for the button.

Working with Keyword View

I am going to use the test we recorded in the previous article. Open the flight’s application. Enter the Agent Name and Password on the Login Page and Click on OK.

I am also going to add some function calls and statements programmatically from Expert view and show you how they appear under the tabular form in the Keyword view.

This is the code I put in the expert view:

Dialog("Login").WinEdit("Agent Name:").Set "swati"
Dialog("Login").WinEdit("Password:").SetSecure "5112fd3c42beb7a58069b67cfdd9b7e7ad1fc69c"
msgbox "text"
If x=0 Then
msgbox "text 2"
End If
Window("Flight Reservation").ActiveX("MaskEdBox").Type "010312"
Window("Flight Reservation").WinComboBox("Fly From:").Select "Denver"
Window("Flight Reservation").WinComboBox("Fly To:").Select "Frankfurt"

Lines 1 through 3 are the login operations. Line 4 is a function call to message box display operation. I added a dummy if statement just to show you how it appears in the keyword view. X is a dummy value as well.

Since we are not going to run this test, let’s just use it theoretically. Lines 8 through 10 are entering the date of flight in the to and from locations. This is used to understand how objects are grouped.

This code appears as follows in the Keyword view: [click on any image for an enlarged view]

QTP keyword view screen

As you can see there are 4 columns – Item, Operation, Value, and Documentation. The table can be expanded or collapsed by clicking on the little arrow next to the action name.

Item: Each step is a sequence of events performed on an item. The items can be any of the following:

  • Test object (For Example, Agent Name Edit box).
  • Utility Object: These are some objects reserved by QTP to be used in tests. For example, the DataTable object. More coming up on this later.
  • Statement: Any VB Script programmatic statements or even comments.
  • Function call: like ‘msgbox’ call in our program

Operation: It shows the operation that is performed on the item. When this column is clicked for a particular item, it lists all the available operations that can be performed on the object.

Operations on Objects in QTP

Value: This column can be considered as the argument of a statement displayed. In our example, the message box function call has a value “Text”. There can be multiple arguments for one statement in which case this column will be divided accordingly.

Documentation:  A read-only column that translates a statement into easily understandable comments.

There are two other columns Assignment and Comment that can be added to the Keyword view table. To do so, the option to select is Tools ->View Options and choose the required columns from the list displayed.

keyword view options

Assignment: This column is not very widely used and what this does is, it assigns a value to or gets a value from a variable.

Keyword View Assignment column

Comments: The tester can write anything under this column. It will be treated as comments in the expert view.


Well, that sums up an interesting insight into the basic capabilities of the QTP keyword view. Actions are logical units of separation in a test. The test is, therefore, a series of function calls. When a new test is created it contains one call to action.

By default, all actions are reusable. QTP follows a multi-level hierarchy to recognize objects. An object that contains the next level of objects is called a container. There can be more than one level of containers in a test.

In our next article, we will talk about how we can use this view to Insert Steps. Modify them, Insert checkpoints, Breakpoints and how we can manage actions.

=> Visit Here For The QTP Training Tutorials Series

This is the second post in our QTP training series started with the help of QTP expert Swati Seela. We have started this training series for those who want to learn QTP from scratch.

These tutorials are designed for beginners as well as advanced QTP testers. Join our email newsletter or RSS feed if you don’t want to miss a single article in this series.  We hope this will be the most comprehensive QTP online training for everyone.

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