Testing with Puppeteer

# Testing with Puppeteer

Among all Selenium alternatives the most interesting emerging ones are tools developed around Google Chrome DevTools Protocol (opens new window). And the most prominent one is Puppeteer (opens new window). It operates over Google Chrome directly without requiring additional tools like ChromeDriver. So tests setup with Puppeteer can be started with npm install only. If you want get faster and simpler to setup tests, Puppeteer would be your choice.

CodeceptJS uses Puppeteer to improve end to end testing experience. No need to learn the syntax of a new tool, all drivers in CodeceptJS share the same API.

Take a look at a sample test:

I.click('Sign in', '//html/body/div[1]/header');
I.see('Sign in to GitHub', 'h1');
I.fillField('Username or email address', '[email protected]');
I.fillField('Password', '123456');
I.click('Sign in');
I.see('Incorrect username or password.', '.flash-error');

It's readable and simple and works using Puppeteer API!

# Setup

To start you need CodeceptJS with Puppeteer packages installed

npm install codeceptjs puppeteer --save

Or see alternative installation options (opens new window)

If you already have CodeceptJS project, just install puppeteer package and enable a helper it in config.

And a basic project initialized

npx codeceptjs init

You will be asked for a Helper to use, you should select Puppeteer and provide url of a website you are testing.

Puppeteer can also work with Firefox. Learn how to set it up

# Configuring

Make sure Puppeteer helper is enabled in codecept.conf.js config:

{ // ..
  helpers: {
    Puppeteer: {
      url: "http://localhost",
      show: true
  // ..

Turn off the show option if you want to run test in headless mode.

Puppeteer uses different strategies to detect if a page is loaded. In configuration use waitForNavigation option for that:

By default it is set to domcontentloaded which waits for DOMContentLoaded event being fired. However, for Single Page Applications it's more useful to set this value to networkidle0 which waits for all network connections to be finished.

  helpers: {
    Puppeteer: {
      url: "http://localhost",
      show: true,
      waitForNavigation: "networkidle0"

When a test runs faster than application it is recommended to increase waitForAction config value. It will wait for a small amount of time (100ms) by default after each user action is taken.

β–Ά More options are listed in helper reference (opens new window).

# Writing Tests

CodeceptJS test should be created with gt command:

npx codeceptjs gt

As an example we will use ToDoMvc app for testing.

# Actions

Tests consist with a scenario of user's action taken on a page. The most widely used ones are:

  • amOnPage - to open a webpage (accepts relative or absolute url)
  • click - to locate a button or link and click on it
  • fillField - to enter a text inside a field
  • selectOption, checkOption - to interact with a form
  • wait* to wait for some parts of page to be fully rendered (important for testing SPA)
  • grab* to get values from page sources
  • see, dontSee - to check for a text on a page
  • seeElement, dontSeeElement - to check for elements on a page

β„Ή All actions are listed in Puppeteer helper reference (opens new window).*

All actions which interact with elements support CSS and XPath locators. Actions like click or fillField by locate elements by their name or value on a page:

// search for link or button
// locate field by its label
I.fillField('Name', 'Miles');
// we can use input name
I.fillField('user[email]','[email protected]');

You can also specify the exact locator type with strict locators:

I.click({css: 'button.red'});
I.fillField({name: 'user[email]'},'[email protected]');
I.seeElement({xpath: '//body/header'});

# Interactive Pause

It's easy to start writing a test if you use interactive pause. Just open a web page and pause execution.

Feature('Sample Test');

Scenario('open my website', ({ I }) => {

This is just enough to run a test, open a browser, and think what to do next to write a test case.

When you execute such test with codeceptjs run command you may see the browser is started

npx codeceptjs run --steps

After a page is opened a full control of a browser is given to a terminal. Type in different commands such as click, see, fillField to write the test. A successful commands will be saved to ./output/cli-history file and can be copied into a test.

A complete ToDo-MVC test may look like:


Scenario('create todo item', ({ I }) => {
  I.fillField('What needs to be done?', 'Write a guide');
  I.see('Write a guide', '.todo-list');
  I.see('1 item left', '.todo-count');

# Grabbers

If you need to get element's value inside a test you can use grab* methods. They should be used with await operator inside async function:

const assert = require('assert');
Scenario('get value of current tasks', async ({ I }) => {
  I.fillField('.todo', 'my first item');
  I.fillField('.todo', 'my second item');
  let numTodos = await I.grabTextFrom('.todo-count strong');
  assert.equal(2, numTodos);

# Within

In case some actions should be taken inside one element (a container or modal window or iframe) you can use within block to narrow the scope. Please take a note that you can't use within inside another within in Puppeteer helper:

await within('.todoapp', () => {
  I.fillField('.todo', 'my new item');
  I.see('1 item left', '.todo-count');
  I.click('.todo-list input.toggle');
I.see('0 items left', '.todo-count');

# Each Element Since 3.3

Usually, CodeceptJS performs an action on the first matched element. In case you want to do an action on each element found, use the special function eachElement which comes from eachElement (opens new window) plugin.

eachElement function matches all elements by locator and performs a callback on each of those element. A callback function receives ElementHandle instance (opens new window) from Puppeteer API. eachElement may perform arbitrary actions on a page, so the first argument should by a description of the actions performed. This description will be used for logging purposes.

Usage example

await eachElement(
  'click all checkboxes', 
  async (el, index) => {
    await el.click();

β„Ή Learn more about eachElement plugin

# Mocking Network Requests Since 3.5.16

Network requests & responses can be mocked and modified. Use mockRoute which strictly follows Puppeteer's setRequestInterception API (opens new window).

I.mockRoute('https://reqres.in/api/comments/1', request => {
    status: 200,
    headers: { 'Access-Control-Allow-Origin': '*' },
    contentType: 'application/json',
    body: '{"name": "this was mocked" }',

I.mockRoute('**/*.{png,jpg,jpeg}', route => route.abort());

// To disable mocking for a route call `stopMockingRoute`
// for previously mocked URL

To master request intercepting use HTTPRequest object (opens new window) object passed into mock request handler.

# Accessing Puppeteer API

To get Puppeteer API inside a test use I.usePupepteerTo method with a callback. To keep test readable provide a description of a callback inside the first parameter.

I.usePuppeteerTo('emulate offline mode', async ({ page, browser }) => {
  await page.setOfflineMode(true);

Puppeteer commands are asynchronous so a callback function must be async.

A Puppeteer helper is passed as argument for callback, so you can combine Puppeteer API with CodeceptJS API:

I.usePuppeteerTo('emulate offline mode', async (Puppeteer) => {
  // access internal objects browser, page, context of helper
  await Puppeteer.page.setOfflineMode(true);
  // call a method of helper, await is required here
  await Puppeteer.click('Reload');

# Capturing Code Coverage

Code coverage can be captured, by enabling the coverage plugin in codecept.config.js.

  plugins: {
    coverage: {
      enabled: true

Once all the tests are completed, codecept will create and store coverage in output/coverage folder, as shown below.

Open index.html in your browser to view the full interactive coverage report.

# Extending Helper

To create custom I.* commands using Puppeteer API you need to create a custom helper.

Start with creating an MyPuppeteer helper using generate:helper or gh command:

npx codeceptjs gh

Then inside a Helper you can access Puppeteer helper of CodeceptJS. Let's say you want to create I.renderPageToPdf action. In this case you need to call pdf method of page object

// inside a MyPuppeteer helper
async renderPageToPdf() {
  const page = this.helpers['Puppeteer'].page;
  await page.emulateMedia('screen');
  return page.pdf({path: 'page.pdf'});

The same way you can also access browser object to implement more actions or handle events.

β–Ά Learn more about Helpers (opens new window)

Last Updated: 4/10/2024, 2:09:19 PM