Win32 Extension Kit FAQ

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					                                         dotNet Extension Kit FAQ


Q. What are the advantages of using the Extension Kit over SilkTest DLL calls?
A. Depending on your needs, DLL calling may be an acceptable solution but functions
written with the Extension Kit can run significantly faster and give you greater flexibility. Also
the Extension Kit will operate on all platforms, whereas DLL calling will not.

Q. Can the Extension Kit be programmed in any other language e.g. Visual Basic
A. No. VB does not produce a true dll; rather it produces an ActiveX control that, by making
certain calls to system dlls, appears to act like a true dll. The Extension Kit can only be
programmed in C or C++ but you do not have to use Microsoft Visual Studio. The
documentation gives VC++ and Borland C processes, but a good programmer could also
make e.g. the MingW+ and Bloodshed Dev compilers work too.

Q. If I use a Microsoft Visual Studio, which one do I need?
A. You can use either Visual Studio 6.0 or Visual Studio 2003 (not VS 2005 or VS2008).
Please note that writing extensions in C# is not currently supported.

Q. What version of the dotNet framework does the Extension Kit support?
A. As of version 1.0 of this FAQ, dotNet 1.1 is fully supported but there are no known
problems with framework 2.0. This information will be updated when and as necessary.

Q. What sort of extensions can I write?
A. There are two main types of extension; internal and external. Internal extensions have
their code contained within the AUT and external extensions communicate via a messaging
protocol developed by you. After that, the only limitation is the programmer.

Q. What’s the difference?
A. An internal extension is easier to write but requires deploying assist.dll with the end
package. Segue do not recommend this as any deployed version may conflict with the
SilkTest installed version. However, assist.dll can be explicitly linked which is more difficult
but gets round the deployment problem. An external extension is slower and initially more
difficult to write than either internal version, but has neither of their disadvantages.

Q. How do I write an external extension messaging protocol?
A. The Extension Kit documentation guides you through this process.

Q. Can the Extension Kit process both Unicode and ANSI?
A. It depends. You need to use the version of assist.dll that comes with your copy of
SilkTest. SilkTest International ships with a Unicode Agent and SilkTest with an ANSI agent.
The table below shows the dependancies:

If your SilkTest               …and your agent is Unicode,               …and your agent is ANSI,
Extension Kit is…              then the Extension Kit can process        then the Extension Kit can process
Unicode                        Unicode, ANSI                             ANSI
Multibyte                      Multibyte, ANSI                           ANSI
ANSI                           ANSI                                      ANSI


Q. Does the Extension Kit provide full mouse and keyboard emulation?
A. Yes.




dotNet_EK FAQ                               Prepared by: Dai Griffiths              Segue Software Support
Version 1: 9th February 2006                       Page 1 of 2
Q. What about the Windows messaging system? Can I use that?
A. The data passed to each external function always includes the window handle. This
means that you can use the Windows messaging system to interact with your custom object.

Q. Can I use the Extension Kit to extend existing SilkTest classes and methods?
A. Yes.The Extension Kit will work with full inheritance from the parent class.

Q. Will I have to write my own network calls to access a remote agent?
A. No. Functions written with the Extension Kit automatically inherit remote procedure calls
from the SilkTest Agent.

Q. Can I write server-side extensions too?
A. Yes. You can write extensions that, when properly synchronised, will test both client and
server in parallel.

Q. What happens if my server is an unsupported platform?
A. You can use the client application’s own internal messaging protocol to test the server

Q. How do I link the SilkTest agent to my custom extension?
A. The assist.lib file and qapwinek.h files are provided to do this for you.

Q. Can I write/use my own header files?
A. Yes. You link them in the normal way.

Q. Can I create error handling in my extension that works in the same way as the
SilkTest RaiseError function?
A. Yes. QAP_RaiseError is provided for this function.

Q. Can I work with graphics?
A. The Extension Kit can be made to uniquely recognise graphical objects using
‘pseudotags’. The documentation has more information on this.

Q. Can I test an object that has no GUI?
A. Yes. You will need to hook the application’s own API with the Extension Kit.

Q. SilkTest recognises native AUT methods but not my extension. What’s wrong?
A. You must ensure that the agent is started before your extension.

Q. I’ve upgraded SilkTest and my extension doesn’t work anymore. Why not?
A. You must use the current version of assist.dll as supplied with your version of SilkTest.
For an implicitly-linked internal extension: copy the new assist.dll to the application directory
For an explicitly-linked internal extension: rebuild your extension with the new assist.dll




dotNet_EK FAQ                       Prepared by: Dai Griffiths           Segue Software Support
Version 1: 9th February 2006               Page 2 of 2