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Katalon Studio – A robust alternative to open source automation frameworks

Katalon Studio is a comprehensive tool set for web and mobile app automation testing. This tool includes a full package of powerful features that help overcome common challenges in web UI test automation, for example, pop-up, iFrame, and wait-time. This user-friendly and versatile solution help testers test better, work faster, and launch high quality software thank to the intelligence it provides to the entire test automation process.

The tool is available to all testers at no cost and can be downloaded at https://www.katalon.com

Key features of Katalon Studio:

  • Simple deployment: A single, cohesive deployment package contains everything you need to deploy a powerful test automation tool.
  • Quick & easy set-up: Not only providing simple installation, Katalon Studio also makes its easy to set up the environment. testers can run their first test script quite quickly using its pre-built templates and test scripts, such as object repositories and keyword libraries.
  • Faster & Better results: Built-in templates with clear tutorials help testers quickly build and run the automation test scripts. They can perform every single step with speed and efficiency, from project setup, test creation, execution, report generating, and maintenance.
  • Flexible modes: New testers can use recording and keywords to build automation tests, while expert testers have a full IDE to build advanced scripts.
  • Ease of use: It couldn’t be easier, even manual with minimum programming experience can also exploit its benefits with effortlessly.
  • Cross-browser application: Katalon Studio supports multiple platforms: Windows 32 and 64 (7, 8, and 10), OS X 10.8+, and Linux (Console Mode version).

Hands-on with Katalon Studio

Katalon Studio is an insightful, user-friendly automation solution that is characterized by the simplicity and speed. It is helpful for automation tester teams and individuals to spend the least efforts from setting up a new project to executing tests and then monitoring execution results. Each workflow provides lots of capabilities and customizations for effortless maintenance and project scale up:

  • Pre-defined structure of test artifacts: test cases, test suites, test objects, reports. Testers no longer need to spend hours in defining and maintaining them later.
  • Custom keywords provides the flexibility in adding additional keywords to test the AUT efficiently for the specific and complex testing purposes.
  • Support major testing needs: Web, Mobile and API.
  • Execute multiple test suites at once with test suite collection.
  • Extend current CI flow easily with console mode execution at no efforts. Executing command line can be generated quickly using ‘Generate Command Line for console mode’ feature.
  • Monitor execution results easily with either Table view or Tree view during / after execution.
  • Detailed Test Suite report reducing time in analyzing results. You can export it to different format such as CSV, PDF, HTML and store it for later use.


Navigating a linear, streamlined workflow with Katalon Studio:

  • Integral project templates: by offering built-in templates for organizing test cases, object repository and keywords, Katalon Studio makes testing easier for testers than ever before.
  • Multiple capabilities: Fully supports Web, Android, iOS and API testing on all operating systems.
  • Hassle-free tool integration: Easy to integrate with Jenkins, GIT and JIRA with native plug-ins.


  • Automatic test generation: Records actions and generates scripts automatically using built-in keywords.
  • Hi-end scripting: Enables building advanced test scripts or customizable keywords with ease and efficiency.
  • Smart object capturing: An advanced recorder detects object properties effectively to maximize recognition.


  • Test execution made powerful: Runs test cases or test suites using multiple configurations and data sets.
  • Versatility in execution: Provides CI integration console with various parameters for remote execution. Runs tests on multiple browsers and OS’s locally or with Sauce Labs and BrowserStack.
  • Flexible failure handling and auto re-execution: Includes run-time rules to automatically handle complex execution flows.


  • Reports available in several formats: With advanced logging, debug data and screenshots.
  • Bespoke execution reports: Integrated with your notification workflow.
  • Enhanced Selenium and Appium logs: With improved analysis features to improve automation strategy.


  • Intelligent test object maintenance: Automatically updates all associated test cases and suites when objects are changed.
  • Efficient test organization: Allows easy management and maintenance of tests, data and keywords.
  • Easy team collaboration: Integrates with GIT to allow team members to easily share artifacts and workload.

Why choosing Katalon Studio over Selenium open source?

  • Katalon Studio hides all technical complexities behind the scene and provides friendly UI with the manual mode (user can drag-drop, select keywords and test objects to form test steps), but still keeps necessary weapons for more technically powerful users who are able to dig deeper into coding with the scripting mode that fully supports development conveniences like syntax highlighting, code suggestion and debugging
  • With Selenium, users have to go framework through technical guidelines for their API and integrate them into with an IDE and a preferred programming language. By contrast, Katalon Studio is built as a unified bundle which includes almost all necessary things like Java, Android SDK, Web drivers to drive browsers, and required dependencies. All you have to do is to download and install it on your computer. Minimum installation is required
  • While Selenium/Appium requires users to build common and reusable actions on their own, katalon Studio contains pre-defined sets of commonly used keywords or actions, users will find them enough to start implementing most test cases, but if they have more advanced or specific needs they still have a way to create custom keywords for their projects. Custom keywords are an extension of built-in keywords.

Could it be a viable alternative to costly commercial tools?

Katalon Studio scores fairly well as compared to commercial test automation tools such as UFT & Test Complete in multiple ways. It comes across as a viable, virtually free option to such tools available in the market:


Katalon StudioUFT/TestComplete
No costs for licensing & maintenanceCost-prohibitive solution: licensing & maintenance fees are quite high
Free upgradesHigh fees for upgrades & add-on modules
Cross-platform solutionOnly Windows based


Katalon Studio has been recently published but gaining widespread acceptance among the testing community. It opens up an easier and faster way for automation testing teams. With the simple deployment, comprehensive feature set, ease of use, and rich supporting resources, Katalon Studio is breaking new ground in the test automation landscape.

Additional updates: More advanced features in Katalon Studio’s latest version 4.8.


Enhanced Katalon Help

Introducing brand new Katalon Help page for Katalon Studio application. Users can access Katalon Studio resources all in one place such as Tutorials, FAQs, Sample Projects, or User Guides.

Support Shadow DOM

Katalon Studio Version 4.8 supports objects with Shadow DOM in Web Testing. Users can identify Shadow DOM objects by specifying the Shadow Root Parent in the Object settings tab.

Test Suite

Video Capturing

Introducing Katalon Studio new feature video capturing for Test Suite reports. Users will be able to video capture test suite execution and replay to review how each test case was executed. Description of test steps will be added as subtitle for users’ convenience. Video capturing feature can be enable in Project Settings.

Variable Binding

Variable Binding has been improved to allow users to set or update Type and Test Data column of multiple rows at once. This improvement aims to save testing time and to eliminate several repetitive procedures.

JIRA Integration

Katalon Studio add-on for JIRA: An add-on for JIRA so that business users can involve with development team. Project Manager or Business Analyst can compose requirements on JIRA under the BDD’s format. These requirements will be synced with Katalon Studio so that test script can be generated and associated accordingly.

Basic functions and features of this JIRA add-on are as following:

  • Katalon BDD – JIRA custom Gherkin field
  • Sync JIRA Issues back and forth
  • Sync Katalon Studio test execution via attachment

The add-on is listed at Atlassian Marketplace. Currently, we only suport JIRA server. To install the add-on, please follow Atlassian’s instruction.

Mobile Testing

Record and Spy Mobile is improved to support Kobiton devices, a cloud-based devices platform. Testing team can run test automation on hundreds of Kobiton devices.

  • Users can choose 2 options in Device Types:
    • Local devices: This will list out all local devices and simulators
    • Kobiton device: This will list out Kobiton’s devices that integrated with Katalon Studio
  • Device Name: display all devices name accordingly based on selected type in Device Types

Test Case

Introducing Recent Keywords and Recent Objects features in Manual mode when writing a test case. This will optimize time and reduce repetitive tasks for users.

  • Recent Keywordsfeature allows users to select and add any of the 10 last used keywords to Item list.
  • Recent objectsfeature in Test Object Input dialog allows users to select and add any of the 10 last used Test Objects. Users can also quickly jump to Recent Object Folder that has recent used objects accordingly.

Web Services

Support OAuth 1.0 authorization

Katalon Studio now supports OAuth 1.0 authorization for Web Services Testing.  OAuth (Open Standard for Authorization) is an open token-based protocol authentication and authorization that allows application to capture protected information without exposing end user credentials. Testing teams can leverage this support to test any Web Services project that required OAuth 1.0 authorization with Katalon Studio.

Project Settings


This version of Katalon Studio improves Email configuration in Project setting. Users able to customize Mail Server, send to multiple recipients, editable subject field.

New Template under Email section allows users to customize test execution reports and add extra fields to the report.

Katalon Studio Console Mode for Linux OS

Katalon Studio for Linux is now available. Users can execute test automation in Linux environment by using command line mode. Refer to this guide for Console Mode Execution.


3 thoughts on “Katalon Studio – A robust alternative to open source automation frameworks”

  1. Thanks for your article. I’ve used Katalon Studio for a while and feel happy seeing the tool gets more attention as it deserves that. Actually, Katalon needs to enhance more. However, with my experience, its performance so far so good. I hope the team should take into account the features improvement, especially the Linux version. Keep up the good work!

  2. Pingback: Testing Bits – 10/8/17 – 10/14/17 | Testing Curator Blog

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