I have begun to use SpecFlow and WatiN to automate UI tests in IE9, and am encountering a maddening problem which may have nothing do to with either, but hey. I have the following step:

public void Then_I_should_see_the_model_detail_screen()
    Regex r = new Regex(Nav.ModelView + @"1[0-9]+", RegexOptions.IgnoreCase);
    bool isMatch = r.IsMatch(WebBrowser.Driver.Url);
    Span span = WebBrowser.Current.Span(Find.ById("ScreenTitle"));
    string title = span.Exists ? span.Text : "";
    Assert.AreEqual(_DummyModel.Title, title);

If I place a breakpoint at the first Assert statement, title is an empty string, even though span.Exists is true and span.Text has a value. Furthermore, isMatch is false even though the pattern matches.

However, if I place a breakpoint at the top of the method and step through, isMatch is true and title is populated with the value of span.Text.

The test fails if I don't run it in debug, too, which is of course the main issue.

EDIT: If I place a Thead.Sleep(1000) at the top of this method, it works as expected. I forgot to mention that this method is running during/after a redirect. My guess is that this method is evaluating before the redirect is finished, but in debug mode I'm able to see the "live" values of the WebBrowser.

So is there a better way to wait for the redirect to finish, or to check that I've been redirected?

1 Answer 1


The insertion of Thread.Sleep() is typically indicative of a race condition in your test and your test is running out of sync with the thing is it testing.

One suggestion may be to insert a polling loop to wait for the redirect, or an event to indicate the redirect has happened.

See http://www.testingmentor.com/imtesty/?p=652 and read the comments for additional ideas.

  • Looks easy enough. Thank you for the suggestion! Commented Oct 8, 2012 at 20:34

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