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Knowledge Base

The difference between basic and desktop recording

Java application

To show the difference between basic and desktop recording, let's use a simple Java application on which we will perform the same activities.

Basic recorder. Let's record check, type into and click activities. The resulting workflow is:

Check out the Activities selectors. As you can see, this type of recording generates a full selector for each activity. 

Now let's do the same actions using desktop recorder.

The workflow will now contain an attach window activity, which has the top level window of the selector.


In the Do block, every activity will now have a partial selector that does not contain the top level window. That means the top window element in the UI hierarchy will be identified just once in the beginning and then it will be used for every element.

The desktop recorder is optimized to do more than one action, while the basic recorder is generally used when you only have to do one activity. The basic recorder is more slower than the desktop recorder because it always identifies the element starting from the parent window.