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December 14, 2022

How to Playwright

Eddie Gomez


Software Engineer
San Diego, CA

Playwright is an end-to-end testing framework that has been gaining popularity. We choose playwright for the ease of use and familiar Javascript syntax.

### Why Playwright over [Cypress](

- Typescript support out of the box.
- Can run on multiple browsers including WebKit (safari).
- Choice of test runner.
- Test readability; less method chaining.
- Multiple page support.

### Installing [Playwright](

Getting started with Playwright couldn't be simpler.

By running the following command with either `npm` or `yarn`

yarn init playwright@latest

The install command will result in a few prompts
For example, choosing between TypeScript or Javascript.
Naming the Test folder.
As well as adding GitHub Actions workflows for running tests.

### Playwright setup with [Redwoodjs](

So, it’s pretty easy to get playwright installed. We have been using Playwright on our most recent RedwoodJS app; our goto full stack Javascript Framework.

Since [Redwoodjs]( is broken up within a Web directory for the frontend and API directory for the backend. We have added a script in the root `package.json` to run the end-to-end tests.

By doing so, we have to give the script context using the `-c` flag and pass the location of our playwright config.

Thereafter, we can pass any other playwright params.                                            

For example:

"test:e2e": "npx playwright test -c web/playwright.config.ts --trace on --workers 1 --reporter=list"
//or npx playwright test


`--trace on`  - A snapshot recording of the test running in the browsers; for debugging purposes.

`--worker 1`  - Disable parallelization (to run test individually and avoid test pollution on the backend/db side)

`--reporter=list` - Command line report output style.

We have also tweaked the `webServer` options in `playwright.config.ts` to launch a local production build of the [Redwoodjs]( app to test against.

Since, redwood uses `yarn rw serve`  to run both front/back end sides.

webServer: {
   reuseExistingServer: true,
   command: 'yarn rw serve',
   port: 8910,

### We are all set, Let’s write a test!

Playwright has a pretty useful command to help with writing tests; figuring out which selector methods to use.

Let’s see it in action!

Now let us run the dev server for instance, `yarn rw dev` ([redwoodjs]( then, in a new terminal tab run the following command.

npx playwright codegen

A chromium browser should pop open as well as the playwright inspector window.

Now let’s see if we can test a successful login on the app.
We can just follow the motions by navigating to our app, and login with a user.
Playwright Inspector will be listening for changes and provide the appropriate selectors for us to use.

We can use the Playwright Inspector as a jumping off point for writing our test. Writing tests should look a bit familiar; similar to writing unit test using [react-testing-library](

For example

import { test, expect } from '@playwright/test'

test.describe('login as a user', () => {

 test('should login user', async ({ page }) => {

await page.goto('<http://localhost:8910/>')

await page.getByRole('link', { name: 'Login' }).click()

await expect(page).toHaveURL('/login')

const userNameInput = page.getByLabel('Username')
await userNameInput.fill('')

const passwordInput = page.getByLabel('Password')
await passwordInput.fill('password')

await page.getByRole('button', { name: 'Login' }).click()
await expect(page).toHaveURL('<http://localhost:8910/>')


We import `test` from playwright/test.

`describe` method is used to define a group of tests.

Thereafter, we use the`test` (similar to `it` ; like in Jest) function with a title and callback function.

For instance,

test("title goes here", () => {
thing we want to test; goes in here.

With typescript support out of the box and `codegen` tool; it is pretty easy to find the appropriate selectors, to grab an input fields or buttons from the DOM.

Now let’s run the test via our script!

yarn test:e2e


### Boom!

The test pass in all three web browsers Chrome, Firefox, Safari
Easy as that!

### Resources

Want to checkout the repo?

- [Redwood Template App](

Learn RedwoodJS?

- [Learn with Redwood](

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