How to frame common actions in Rainforest

Click in/ Click into/ Click on

“Click in” is a more specific instruction which testers will generally associate with clicking a text field to enter some text or value. We distinguish this from a more general instruction to “Click” or “Click on” to imply that testers will be interacting with an UI element other than a text field such as a tab or a button.

Example Step

Action: Click in the field next to the bolded text “Email” and enter: “”.
Did you successfully enter “” in this field?


When testers are instructed to Login or Sign-in, they will search the step for provided credentials they can enter into the corresponding fields on the webpage. Additionally, they will expect to be navigated to a seeded account of some sort when they complete a login/sign-in process.

Because of this second expectation, it is very important to differentiate between a log-in/sign-in process and a sign-up process, in which a tester would expect to create a user or test account as part of the workflow they’re going through.

Example Step:

Action: In the email field enter “#{{rainforest.tester_email}}” and in the password field enter “#{{rainforest.tester_password}}”. After these have been entered, click the “Sign in” button.
Were you navigated to a dashboard with a welcome message reading “Welcome Back, #{{rainforest.test_email}}”?


In addition to our click-to-copy functionality, when testers are instructed to copy and paste something, they will use their cursor to highlight the designated text and either use cmd+c /cntrl+c or a right click >’Copy’ to copy the text. To paste, they will use either cmd+v /cntrl+v or right click > ‘paste’ to input text. If you would like for testers to use one method over the other, it is best to do so by specifying this in the step instruction.

With copy/paste processes, there are several best practices to keep in mind.

  1. Use quoted text to distinguish the value being copied from the body text of the step
  2. Designate to testers which field they are pasting the value into
  3. Ask them to verify that they were able to enter the designated text into the field successfully.

Example Step:

Action: Copy “#{{field1_random.text}}” and paste it into the “Summary” field.
Did “#{{field1_random.text}}" populate the “Summary” field?

Enter / Fill in or fill out

When testers are instructed to ‘enter’ something, they will default to copying and pasting the value into an input field specified in the instructions. This also applies to fields that have placeholder text or previously entered text.

If it is necessary for a tester to manually enter a value, the instructions should be written to tell to tell the tester to do so. Telling testers “DO NOT COPY AND PASTE” also has a similar effect.

If you would like testers to hit the enter key on their keyboard, make sure to specify the difference.

Example Step:

Action: Into the “Reminder” field, enter “Do not leave toast in the toaster unattended”.
Did the field populate with the text “Do not leave toast in the toaster unattended’?

Write / Type in:

When testers are instructed to type in text, this translates as instructions to manually enter text rather than copying and pasting from the instructions into a field in the app.

Example Step:

Action: Type in “This is a test.” into the field underneath the “Category” header.
Was “This is a test” successfully entered in to the field?


In Rainforest there are several ways to ‘download’ a file so that it can be used by a tester in the course of a test.

Downloading a file that is embedded in the step.

When a file is embedded in a step testers will be able to download the file by clicking a clipboard icon. By clicking on this icon, the file will automatically copied to the tester’s clipboard and can be downloaded by entering the copied url in a new browser window or tab. Once pasted and executed, the file will download from the window or tab the tester downloaded it in.

With this, we highly recommend that the question portion of a download step ask a tester whether a file was downloaded after they executed the entered URL.

Example Step:

Action: Click the icon next to this file and in a new tab and paste the value into the URL field of the tab.
Did a file download when you navigated to the address?

Downloading a file from a URL provided in a step.

Files that are hosted on a server such as Amazon S3 will have a URL that a tester can enter into a URL field of a browser and will automatically download the file once executed.

If the file is hosted in this manner, we suggest that the download step includes instructions to enter and execute the hosting URL in a different browser window or a different tab so as to not disturb the tester’s work until this point of a test.

Example Step:

Action: Open a new Chrome browser window and navigate to
Did a file download in the new browser window?

Downloading a file from interacting with an UI element.

A third way to download a file during a test is to have testers interact with a UI element - such as (but not limited to) a button, hyperlink, icon, etc… - to start the download process. In such cases, it should be made very clear to the tester how they should interact with the element, whether the file will cause a saving modal to appear, and/or whether the file will download automatically.

Example Step:

Action: In the the top right hand corner of the page, locate the icon of a cloud with an arrow pointing downward in the middle and click it.
: Did a file download after you clicked the icon?

Saving a downloaded file

In some instances, a file downloaded by one of the processes above will prompt testers to save it under a certain name. In this case testers should be instructed in the same step to enter the desired file name and/or click ‘save’ in the modal that would appear upon completing the file download.

Example Step:

Action: Open a new Chrome browser window and navigate to In the modal that appears, rename this file “awesome_download” and click “Save”.
Did a file download with a title that begins with “awesome”?

Designating the location of the downloaded file

When a file is downloaded, if the download was automatic, this file will have been routed to the ‘downloads’ folder unless otherwise specified in the instructions.

Example Step:

Action: Click the icon next to this file and in a new tab and paste the value into the URL field of the tab. In the modal that appears, in the left navigation panel double-click on the “Downloads” folder to open it. Then click “save”.
Was a file downloaded in the new tab you just opened?”

Select Default Program to open file

Rainforest VMs don't have defaulted programs set to open all file types. Thus, it is best to direct the tester on how to select the appropriate program. A common use case is opening a CSV file on a machine without Office (Excel) pre-installed, so we then Notepad or TextEdit is needed.

Example Step:

Action: Click on the chart icon (displayed in the right-hand corner of the page). Select “Export to CSV” and wait for the file to download, and Open the file.
Question: Can you see the expected values when the file opens? (NOTE: If you get a pop-up that windows can't open this file, then choose the option to select a program from a list of installed programs and click OK. In the Open with window, click on Notepad then OK. Open with TextEdit on Safari machines)


When instructed to “Upload” a file, testers will expect several things to have been completed beforehand.

  1. At some previous step, they were instructed to download a file of some sort that they will be able to access during this step.
  2. There will be instructions describing what element on the UI will allow them to begin the upload process and how they should interact with this element and any other process this interaction may trigger (such as a file picker/selection modal).

In the case that a file picker modal appears, it is a best practice to inform the tester which folder/where a file is located and how to navigate that to that location. In such situations, to actually upload the selected file, testers would then need to click ‘open’ or ‘select’ in this modal to actually begin the process.


Action: Locate the orange “UPLOAD” button and click it once. In the modal that appears, in the left navigation locate the “Downloads” folder and double click on it. Click on “awesome_download” once to select it then click “Open”.
Do you see a progress bar in the middle of the Upload field that is slowly filling up?

Look For/Locate/Identify:

“Look for”/"Locate"/"Identify" instructs tester to visually look for something specific

Example Step:

Look for “Test321” in the last column in the table
Do you see “Test321” in the last column in the table?

Search For:

“Search for” in Rainforest tests could hold several meanings to Rainforest testers. It could mean:

  1. A visual search for a specified element in the Web UI, similar to ‘Look for’. In this case, it is a best practice to draw a tester’s attention to the area of the UI where this specified element would be.
  2. The use of a Search functionality in the UI. Considering that search functions typically come in the form of a search bar or box, it is a best practice to designate the search box/bar as such and where it would be located on a page.

Example Step: Visual Search

Action: In the navigation bar on the right hand side of the page, search for a tab titled “Resources”
Is there a “Resources” tab in this right navigation bar?

Example Step: Search Function:

Action: Use the search text field on the right-hand side to search for “Test321”
Does “Test321” appear in the results?


Instructing testers to scroll up and/or down a page, this indicates to the tester that they should use the scroll functionality via a mouse or touchpad as they would normally. If an element may require a tester to scroll in order to locate it, it would be helpful to inform testers how much they need to scroll or about where approximately on a page they should scroll to.

Example Step:

Action: Scroll down the page until you see a section called “My Wishlist”.
As you were scrolling down the page, did you see advertisements appear on the left and right sides of the page?

Web to Mobile Translations:

Tap/Double Tap:

In terms of mobile testing “Tap” and/or “Double Tap” should be translated as the mobile equivalent of the desktop web action “Click”. Instructions that contain ‘tap’ should be interpreted as a direction to click on an object using a cursor.

Example Step:

Action: Double tap on the hamburger button in the top left side of the screen.
Did a menu appear from the left side of the screen?

Swipe (Right/Left/Up/Down)

In mobile testing, “Swipe” translates to a click and dragging of some element in the UI from it’s original position in some direction. The most common directs are right/left/up/down. Generally, the object that is meant to be swiped will be designated and/or identified before the actual instruction to ‘swipe’.

Example Step:

Action: On the page, locate some empty space. Click on that empty space and swipe to the left.
Did a new page appear after you swiped left?

If you have any questions about how to phrase a certain action in Rainforest, feel free to reach out to us at

Mobile "Scroll"

Scrolling on a desktop browser differs from scrolling on a mobile browser. On a desktop browser, scrolling works in the VM just as it does outside - by using the mouse scrolling function. On a mobile VM, scrolling works by clicking a point on the UI and then dragging the page up and down depending on the requirement of the step. This is to simulate how an end user would actually scroll if they were using a mobile app. For this reason, we advise to keep tests run on desktop vs. mobile VMs be kept separate from each other.

Example Step:

Action: Scroll to the middle of the page
Question: Do you see a piechart that has been divided into several segments called "Spent", "Saved" and "Undisturbed"?

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