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    Handling Action Events using Webdriver

    Selenium Webdriver is a tool for creating automation scripts of web application. Webdriver makes direct calls to browser using each browser’s native support for automation rather than depending on server. Webdriver has introduced advanced User Interactions API, which includes actions such as drag and drop or clicking multiple elements while holding down the Control key.

    In order to do action events, you need to use org.openqa.selenium.interactions.Actions class. The Action class is user-facing API for emulating complex user action events. You can directly use this class rather than using the input devices, i.e. Keyboard or Mouse. It Implements builder pattern, in which a complex object is constructed that can be further used to create different representation of same object. In below code, a complex object ‘builder’ is created, which is used to create different actions.handle action events in selenium

    Here is the code snippet for using actions:

    // Configure the Action
    Actions builder = new Actions(driver);

    // To focus on element using webdriver
    builder .moveToElement(element).perform();

    // To click on the element to focus

    Perform method is used here to execute the action. The sequence of actions should be minimal. There are 2 types of actions: Keyboard and Mouse actions.

    Keyboard Interactions using Actions API:

    In keyboard interaction, normally we consider events such as scrolling the element and focusing on it. With the help of Action API, keyboard interactions are easier now. In Advanced User Interactions API, absolute interaction with element is possible either by clicking on element or sending a Keys.TAB before sending text. The Keyboard interface has three methods:

    • Void sendKeys(CharSequence… keysToSend) – Similar to the existing sendKeys() method in Webdriver
    • Void pressKey- Sends a key press only, without releasing it. Should only be implemented for modifier keys (Control, Alt and Shift)
    • Void releaseKey(Keys keyToRelease) – Releases a modifier key

    Mouse Interactions using Actions API:

    In mouse actions we use current location of the element as a standard. First action will be relative to the location of the standard element, the next action will be relative to the location of the mouse at the end of the last action, etc. The Mouse interface includes the following methods:

    • Void click (WebElement onElement): Simply click on element
    • Void double click (WebElement onElement): Double clicks onElement
    • Void mouseDown(WebElement onElement) : Holds down the left mouse button on an element
    • Void mouseUp(WebElement onElement) : Releases the mouse button on an element
    • Void mouseMove(WebElement onElement) : Move (from the current location ) to another element or Void mosueMove(WebElement onElement ,long xOffset, long yOffset ) : Move (from the current location) to new coordinates
    • Void contextClick(WebElement onElement) : Performs a context-click (right click) on an element

    If you want to handle drag and drop event, then you can use following code:
    Actions builder = new Actions(driver);
    WebElement dragElement=driver.findElement(“draggable”));
    WebElement dropElement=driver.findElement(“droppable”));

    // To hold the drag element and then move it to drop element location
    Action dragDrop = builder.clickAndHold(dragElement).moveToElement(dropElement).build();

    // To Execute the drag and drop Action

    If you want to click on menu option in mouse hover menu, then follow this code:
    Actions builder = new Actions(driver);
    WebElement menu = driver.findElement(“menu”));
    WebElement menuoption = driver.findElement(“menuoption”));

    //Move to the main menu option and then sub-option
    Action element= builder.moveToElement(menu).moveToElement(menuoption).build();

    // To Execute the Action

    It’s evident from the above examples that using “Actions API” in Webdriver simplifies input interactions. In fact some events can be only handled by Action API e.g. Drag and drop.

    We welcome your feedback on this article as well as on our Selenium Webdriver Framework.