How to Contribute to WatiN

You are considering contributing to WatiN, how Cool! But how can I help you might ask and what’s in it for me?

WatiN is a great project to work on and since its birth in 2005 it has been growing a lot in functionality and in use. Today (January 2009) it is downloaded over more than 60.000 times and is in the top 3 of open source web testing applications for the dot net framework. So when you contribute it will be noticed and used by many on a daily basis. Personally I think that’s awesome, because WatiN was started basically as a small API to help me with some automated tests I needed to write.

There are a lot of possible ways to help on the WatiN project.

Promote WatiN

Maybe the easiest thing to do: Promote WatiN. Write about how it helped you on your blog, give presentations, spread the word about WatiN to your co-workers or at user-groups.

Help out on the mailing lists

Another easy way of getting started is helping out answering questions on the mailing list. This would really help me and all the WatiN users a lot. Soon people will start recognizing your name as an active WatiN contributor!

Writing code

One of the most obvious choices for an open source project is participating in maintainance and writting new features. If you want to get started on something you might pick an open bug or feature request to your liking (please add a comment to the issue stating you are working on it to prevent others will do the same). If you have some idea of your own, feel free to discuss it on the watin-developers mailing list.

When your done (you didn’t forget to write unit tests did you?) fixing your bug or creating that great new feature you can contribute code by adding it to the issue in the tracker or create a new (bug/feature) issue for your new feature. I prever a svn patch file which makes merging it into the trunk really easy. But you can upload your code in a zip file or just as plain text as well.

By contributing code (or documentation) you implicitly agree to hand over the copyright of your code to me and that the code is original work. Only under those conditions I will be able to add the code to WatiN. Of course your contribution will be mentioned in the release notes and on this page.

Writing documentation

As a WatiN newbe you probably have searched this website for documentation and examples. Not much there right? Then you went searching the internet or send an email to one of the mailing list and probably got an answer to your question(s).

Indeed, writing documentation for WatiN to publish on this website. Topics could be

  • Inline documentation in the code.
  • Documentation on how to deal with WatiN or browser specifics.
  • How to setup your WatiN project.
  • Nice examples.
  • and you can probably think of a lot more…

Will bring you instant fame and a lot of thanks from all the other WatiN users!

Or if you would like to keep the WatiN website up to date, please let me know


Support This Project

I have spend hundreds of hours developing WatiN and giving support, mainly in my spare time. Allthough it is my own choice a donation in whichever size is always welcome!
I do think alot lately about the succes of Apples AppStore and how easy it is to buy a peace of great software for the price of a candy bar.
Wouldn’t it be great if open source developers would receive (just) one euro/dollar per download. Such a small price for so much quality assurance WatiN can give you (or you could go buy that candy bar). One euro for each download, hmmmmm… that would make me… smile! (do the math your self).

And if you decide to donate you will be mentioned honourfully on this list

Any contribution is welcome. Thanks in advance!

Following is a list of people (in alfabetic order) who contributed to WatiN. Please inform me if you think you should be on this list.

Bruce McLeod: patches and WatiN promotion
Daaron Dwyer: Many patches and suggestions as well as WatiN Test Recorder
Dmitry Dzygin for the PromptDialogHandler
Edward Wilde: Brought FireFox support in WatiN 2.0 CTP
Jeremy Wadsack: Contributed Find.ByNear and Find.ByLabel
Jeff Brown: Many patches, specifically cooky management, and our code discussions
Julian Jelffs: for the VbScriptMsgBoxDialogHandler
Scott Hanselman: For the move to Apache license and his early blog entry about WatiN

And thanks to all the people who reported bugs, feature or blogged about WatiN!