How to setup Selenium Grid for Cross-Browser Testing


Learning software testing and automation come with knowing many terms like Selenium, Selenium Grid, and other unique words.

While the term Cross-Browser Testing is one among them!

Suppose you are someone interested in the field of software testing. In that case, reading this article will help you gain more knowledge on the definition of cross-browser testing and the process of setting up Cross-Browser Testing.

This article will dive deep into the basics of Selenium, Selenium Grid, Hub, Nodes, and Selenium Grid in Cross-browser testing and setting up the Cross browser testing.

Before entering the cross-browser testing, knowing basic software testing will help you do more about cross-browser testing.

By the end of this article, you will get a clear view of “How to set up Selenium Grid for Cross-Browser Testing.”

What is Selenium?

In a basic and single word, it is nothing but automating web browsers.

Selenium is an automated software testing tool that is portable and allows access to web application testing.

It works with many different platforms and browsers. Selenium is a set of technologies testers can use to control web applications.

Understand and utilize Selenium; it provides a graphical user interface for capturing user actions using Mozilla.

Other browsers are disabled, though. It can only be used with Web Browsers for this reason.

The Invention of the Selenium Grid

Jason Huggins, the creator of Selenium, invented Selenium Grid.

It was first released in 2008 to run Selenium tests in parallel across multiple machines and browsers, allowing for faster test execution and better scalability.

The Selenium Grid allows the Selenium WebDriver to run tests on different machines and browsers simultaneously, and it is widely used in testing web applications.

Before getting into cross-browser testing, knowing about the hub and node in Selenium Grid will be more helpful.

What is a Hub?

Hub, also known as the central point, helps load your test.

The grid consists of only one hub.

Only in a single-machine hub can it be launched.

The test runs based on the machine that contains only the hub.

What is a Node?

The Selenium instances, known as nodes, will run the tests you loaded onto the hub.

A grid may include one or more nodes.

Nodes can be started on numerous devices using various operating systems and browsers.

It’s okay for the machines powering the nodes to be on the same platform as the hub.

With Selenium Grid, the test is only executed on one system, the hub, while several other machines, the nodes, handle the actual execution.

Types of Selenium

Selenium WebDriver: Web browsers can be easily automated using this tool. It allows you to control the web browser and interact with all your pages.

Selenium Grid: Selenium Grid tool helps you test multiple platforms and browsers. This helps in running tests on various machines and browsers.

Selenium IDE: This browser-based tool helps you to record and play tests in the Firefox browser. It is used for creating simple tests easily and quickly.

Selenium Remote Control (RC): This is the original selenium tool that allows you to control the web browser from the program. It has been largely superseded by webdriver and needs to be maintained more actively.

Why do you need this specific testing?

Three leading technologies, HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript, make up any website.

However, various backend technologies, including Python, Ruby, and others, are available.

But just these three technologies are utilized in the front end and rendering.

Additionally, these three technologies are computed by completely different rendering engines in each browser.

For instance, Google utilizes Blink, Firefox uses Gecko, and IE employs edge HTML and Chakra, resulting in radically distinct renderings of the same webpage by various browsers.

And for that reason, you require cross-browser testing.

This implies that the website should function flawlessly across all browser tabs and software platforms.

Cross-browser testing is, therefore, necessary to make sure it functions properly.

Benefits of setting up the cross-browser testing in Selenium Grid: 

  1. By testing your website or application on multiple browsers, you can ensure that it works correctly and looks consistent across different browsers.
  2. This helps prevent issues when users access your site on a browser you haven’t tested.
  3. Increases user satisfaction: By providing a consistent user experience across different browsers, you can increase user satisfaction and reduce the likelihood of users leaving your site due to compatibility issues.
  4. Increases reach: By ensuring that your website or application works correctly on various browsers, you can reach a larger audience, as users may access your site on different browsers depending on their preferences or the devices they are using.
  5. Provides insights: By testing your site on multiple browsers, you can learn how different browsers handle your code, which can help you optimize your website or application for better performance and compatibility.
  6. Cost-effective: Cross-browser testing can reduce your website or the development and maintenance costs.
  7. By identifying and fixing compatibility issues early in the development process, you can avoid the need for costly rework later on.

Step by step process to install Selenium Grid in Cross-browser Testing:

Step 1:

The first step is to figure out environment variables and install Java.

Installing a Selenium server, available as Jar files, is required to use Selenium Grid.

Installing Java on your computer and configuring environmental variables are prerequisites for using the jar files. You can skip this step if Java is already installed on your computer.

Now here is the link to download and install Java:(Below)


Step 2:

Start by right-clicking and selecting “Settings.”

Step 3:

Go to “Environmental Variables” under “Advanced Settings”

Step 4 :

Select New and type JAVA HOME as the variable’s type.

Step 5:

Select “OK” after entering the Java JDK path as the Variable value.

Step 6:

The next step is to install and download the selenium server.


(Link to download the Selenium)

Now, look at the stable version.

4.8.0 is the most recent stable version.

The jar files can be kept anywhere on your computer.

Transfer them to the C drive to ensure consistency between the hub and node machines.

So, both the hub and node machines now contain the Selenium server jar files.

Step 7:

Now it’s time to configure the machine hub.

Step 8: 

Now the next step is to open and start the command prompt.

Step 9:

Now, look into where the selenium jar files are stored.

For example, if it is stored in the “B” file, then type the command.

Step 10:

Following the command, add the version number too. Here it is 4.8.0; it may change in the future, so place the version number accordingly.

Step 11:

With this command, the computer will start up as a Selenium Grid hub on port 4444 by default.

You can override the default IP address by using the argument ‘-host’ you can override the default IP address.

Step 12:

The entire process has been completed. Now it’s time to check if our process is correct, so we have to check accordingly.

Using the following link, you can verify the “HUB.”


Step 13:

Click on the link, “view configuration”, and verify the details.

Step 14:

Open the command prompt on the node system and go to the folder containing the selenium server jar files.

Enter the command as follows:

Java -jar role node -hub selenium-server-standalone-3.141.59.jar -part 5555

The IP address is that of the computer where the hub is installed, and the port is the hub port (4444 here).

Enter the IP configuration into the hub machine’s command prompt to find its IP address.

The same command can register each node with the hub when using multiple nodes.

The grid, by default, supports 5 Chrome, 5 Firefox, and 1 Internet Explorer browser.

By entering the following command, you can modify these settings:

Browser: browser name, version, maximum instances, platform

Step 15:

Yay🥳, here we go!

You have set up the Selenium Grid for cross-browser testing; congratulation!

  1. Once the hub and nodes are up and running, you can use your test script to connect to the grid and run tests on multiple browsers and platforms simultaneously.
  2. Note that if you want to run your test on different OS or different versions of the browser, you may have to configure them on the node side.

Also, you can use selenium Grid via docker, which would make it easy to handle the dependencies and use ready-made images to avoid the setup process.


As you read earlier, you will get a clear view of setting up a Selenium Grid cross-browser testing once reading this article.

Hope you got it!

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