Basically, I want to automate the creation of a certain type of user account. There are four basic steps, but each step involves a different application and has somewhat intricate details. The steps are as follows:

  1. Open an Excel file and fill in required fields (the fields will be a user name, password with certain requirements, and 2 other simple fields). The template of the Excel file will be the same everytime, but the information entered will be different.

  2. Create a local user account on a remote server with the information entered in step 1. (also, edit certain settings on the user account like "user cannot change password", etc.)

  3. Open up a web browser and browse to an intranet site, enter login information, choose some options, and use a web-based form to upload the Excel file from step 1.

  4. Open up an application called "PasswordSafe", and enter the username/password created in step 1.

Ideally, the way this would work is having a command line type window prompt the user for the required information, and perform the above 4 steps.

I've researched a couple different automation programs and one seems to work, but is very expensive. Is there a good way to do this that is relatively easy and cheap?

Thanks for any help.

  • Do you have to do all 4 steps ? what is the point of this test, what functionality are you most interested in testing ? eg opening an excel file is not really a test, it's just a way of entering data Commented Dec 5, 2011 at 14:49
  • 1
    I agree with Phil, what is the intent of this test? From the information you do provide it sounds like you might be better off programatically generating the excel file than trying to automate it through the UI.
    – Sam Woods
    Commented Dec 5, 2011 at 22:45
  • I agree with Sam, as far as I can tell this is all doable programmatically, for example using Perl.
    – Rsf
    Commented Jan 3, 2012 at 11:34

3 Answers 3


This won't be the most reliable solution but if you're looking for a one-off way to run this test a few times I would suggest AutoHotkey (http://www.autohotkey.com/docs/Tutorial.htm). It won't be pretty but it would get the job done.

I would suggest shrinking the scope of your test with other methods though if you want to test them more thoroughly.


Recently, we faced similar problem of automating user id creations on different applications using different technologies (Swing application, web based, Mainframe etc.). Even few steps in a scenario were difficult to automate (e.g. Flash Controls) using the same tool. To solve the same, we developed a framework, where each scenario in the application were automated using different libraries (we used WebDriver for web app, robots for keys and mouse simulation for Mainframe, AutoIT lib for click at X,Y location, image comparison lib for few steps). Automation were driven using different batch files and later different batch files were combined together in one batch file, responsible for one scenario automation. For few cases, where output from previous steps were required as input to subsequent steps, data was cached in DB / CSV file.

In above case, automation was not related to testing but it was required to automate operational tasks which were being done manually before.


I use WinTask for this sort of activity.

More information about this tool here: http://www.allthingsquality.com/search/label/WinTask

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