Help files

The Web Recorder

While you can create a Web Automation Process by combining and configuring actions in the Process Designer, as you would do for any other other Process, it is much easier to build your web related Processes by using the Web Recorder

You can open the web recorder either while creating a new Process or from within the Process Designer by clicking on the Web Recorder button webrecorderbutton.png on the toolbar.

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This is the initial screen of the Web Recorder. It consists of two parts, the Web Automation browser on the left and the sidebar with the recorded actions on the right. At this point, you are presented with a browser choice. You can either record on the Web Automation browser (initially displaying the "Welcome to Web Recorder" page) or you may use any already open Internet Explorer window with the help of the Live Web Recorder.

Use the Web Automation browser for the recording

As with the Web Helper, the fist step here is to enter in the address bar the URL of the site you want to visit and press "Go" (or Enter). Immediately you will see that the first action in the sidebar gets updated with the website address. This indicates that the recording has started and in the sidebar you will see the corresponding actions that get added as you interact with the web page.

Record the actions on an already open Internet Explorer window (Live Web Recorder)

The Live Web Recorder does not require you type a URL. Instead, the starting web page is determined by your selection of the Internet Explorer window. In other words, the current address of the selected window is where the recording starts from. Therefore, when there are more than one Internet Explorer windows open, you should select the one displaying the site you want to visit before pressing the "Start" button:

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With the correct browser window selected, press the "Start" button to start the recording. The sidebar will now appear on the top right part of the selected Internet Explorer and the Web Automation browser (which is now unnecessary) will hide.

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Note that while using the Live Web Recorder, clicks on the back, forward and refresh buttons of the browser do not get recorded.

Making the Recording

As soon as you start the recording, the process is similar irregardless of your selection between the Live Web Recorder and the Web Automation browser.

Whatever you do gets recorded. So, for example, if you click on a link a new "Click Link on Web Page" action will be appended on the sidebar. Enter some text into a text field, submit a form, navigate back or click on another link; every activity you perform will be translated into the appropriate action and added to the sidebar.

If you perform an action unintentionally and you do not want it to be included in the final sequence of actions, you can move the mouse over the action that you want to delete and a red deleterecorderdactionicon.png button will appear in the action's top right corner, as shown below. By clicking on the x button the action will be removed from the list of recorded actions.

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Most actions have part of their text in blue. These pieces of text correspond to the parameters of the action and can be edited by clicking on them. As an example we'll click on the email address that we entered into the email field and change it:

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This feature is also useful for changing the name the Web Recorder assigns to each element. WinAutomation makes its best effort to extract a name for every element you interact with, however this may not always be possible or you may want to replace the auto generated name with another one that makes more sense to you.

While recording you may want to take notes that will be useful if you chose to edit the actions later in the Process Designer. To do so you need to click on the "Insert Comment" button insertcommenticon.png and a comment action will be appended in the sidebar. This action, holding the comment that you entered, will be part of the recorded actions that will be sent back to the Process Designer.

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If, at any point you want to discard all the actions you have recorded so far and start from scratch, you can press the "Reset Recorded Actions" button. A message box will appear for you to confirm the delete.

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Extracting Data while Recording

The Web Recorder also includes the functionality of the Data Extraction Web Helper so that while you are recording you can specify any data on the web page you are visiting that you want to extract. This is done simply by right-clicking on the element you want to extract and from the context menu that will appear select the "Extract Element Value" and then the attribute that you want to extract.

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As with the Data Extraction Web Helper you may select multiple elements and the Extraction action will be updated accordingly. The action will also include a link to a preview of the selected data as it is going to be extracted.

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By right-clicking on an element you can also insert an action that takes a screenshot of that element, or an action that waits until the text contained in that element appears/disappears from the page. The latter is useful especially for dynamic/AJAX-powered websites that you need to make sure that the page has been updated before moving on the the next action.

Finally, once you are happy with the process you have recorded you can press the "Finish" button and all the actions will be transferred back to the Process Designer:

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As you can see from the screenshot above, all actions (along with any comments you may have added while recording) have been inserted into your Process. From this point you can continue editing and modifying your actions as you would for any other Process whether it has been generated by the Web Recorder or not.