Much like every site on the internet, we use cookies to help analyze traffic and improve our website. As outlined in our privacy policy, any information is only used internally and is not shared with outside organizations.
Learn More

Process

Overview

A Process is one or more Activities executed in a sequence to automate a task. A functional test is one example of a Process, but a Process could be as simple as copying some files. If it is a task you perform on your computer, our goal with AutoBloks is to allow you to automate that task!

Topics:

Creating a New Process

From the Command Ribbon, click the File tab to open the Backstage Menu, select the Home tab if it is not already selected, and click the New Process button. This will open a new, blank Process Editor like shown in the red box below:

New Process Editor

Note: The example screenshot above is from a pre-release version of AutoBloks and may differ slightly from the current product.

Opening an Existing Process

From the Command Ribbon, click the File tab to open the Backstage Menu.

File Open

Note: The example screenshot above is from a pre-release version of AutoBloks and may differ slightly from the current product.

On the Home tab, recently opened processes will appear in the Recent Files list (1). Alternatively, click the Open command (2) to open a standard File Open dialog to select the file to open. A Process file is stored on the file system using the .abprocess file extension.

Tip!
You can use the Pin (3) to pin any file to the top of your Recent Files list for easy access.

Command Ribbon

When a Process is the selected document, a special File Tools tab will be displayed on the Command Ribbon:

Process Tools Group

Note: The example screenshot above may differ slightly from the current product.

The following commands are available:

Reload Process
The process will be reloaded from the file. Useful if you need to revert your changes or if the file has been modified externally.
Process Properties
Opens the Properties dialog for the process.
Clipboard Group
Convenient access to Cut, Copy, and Paste clipboard commands which are based on the selected element in the user interface.
Activity Calls Group
This group contains additional commands used to insert activity calls into the process.

Process Properties

The Process Properties command on the Command Ribbon will open the Process Properties dialog where properties are represented on individual tabs.

Process Properties Dialog

Note: The example screenshot above may differ slightly from the current product.

Libraries

A Process can use User Activities defined in other libraries, but they must be referenced. This tab allows you to manage those references. The following commands are available.

Add
Prompts you to select an Activity Library file to be added as a reference.
Remove
Removes the reference to the selected Activity Library.
Reload
Reloads the referenced Activity Library that is selected. Useful if the library has been modified outside of the tool since it was opened.
Open
Opens the editor for the referenced Activity Library that is selected.

UI Elements

To allow Activity Calls to interact with elements defined in a shared UI Repository they must be referenced. This tab allows you to manage those references. The following commands are available.

Add
Prompts you to select a UI Repository file to be added as a reference.
Remove
Removes the reference to the selected UI Repository.
Reload
Reloads the referenced UI Repository that is selected. Useful if the repository has been modified outside of the tool since it was opened.
Open
Opens the editor for the referenced UI Repository that is selected.

Process Editor

The following screenshot shows an example of a Process that has been opened in the Process Editor:

Process Editor

Note: The example screenshot above is from a pre-release version of AutoBloks and may differ slightly from the current product. User customization may also display the Instructions on the right instead of at the bottom.

Activity Calls

The Activity Calls (1) that will be performed when executing the Process are displayed at the top of the editor. The following columns display information about the Activity Call:

Activity
The name of the Activity that is being called.
Element
Defines any user interface Element that will be interacted with by the Activity. If an Element Nickname was provided, it will be displayed here. Otherwise, the identifying information you provided will be displayed instead. If the value n/a is displayed, that indicates that the Activity does not interact with a user interface Element.
Input & Output
A list of any significant Input or Output Arguments and their corresponding values. An Argument is significant if a value has been defined or if the corresponding Parameter is required. Rarely, some Activities may also mark a Parameter as significant even if the value is not required or populated.
Options
A list of any non-default options that might impact how the Activity is executed.

Instructions

The Instructions Pane (2) is displayed at the bottom of the editor (by default) for the selected Activity Call. This is where you provide the details needed by the Activity during execution. The tabs along the left of the Instructions Pane organize the details into these categories (when supported by the Activity):

Identification
How to identify the user interface Element.
Arguments
The values being passed as Input and Output Arguments to the Parameters defined by the Activity.
Options
Additional options related to the Activity Call.

Interface Customization

The Process Editor provides several features to customize the user interface to meet your individual needs or tastes.