UFT Basics

UFT Classes #6: Object Identification via Mandatory & Assistive properties

Hope you already know what the concept of “Objects” in UFT Automation is. If not, please refer my earlier post “Objects – The fundamental building blocks for Automation!”!


As stated in previous post – Textbox, Button, Image, Checkbox, Dropdown, Hyperlink, etc. – everything which is visible in an application is known as “Object”. Automation is all about identifying these “Objects” in the application and the subsequent “Actions” to-be-performed on it. But the question is – How do you identify different ‘Objects’ in the application via HP UFT?

Object Identification

For Object identification, UFT needs a way to create a unique ‘object description’ for each object in an application. And UFT uses ‘Object properties’ to create that Object’s description. Let’s take an analogy – Say you want to post a letter to your friend’s house (Object). Can you do that without an address (Object Description)? You will need complete address like House No, Street, Locality, City, State, Country & a Pin code (Object Properties). Hope you got it 😉 A set of Property values >> Object Description >> Object.

Mandatory properties: represents the core object properties.

E.g. Name & Text properties for a Link Object.

Assistive properties: But say more than one object have the same values for Mandatory properties, i.e. mandatory properties are not enough to uniquely identify the object >> Assistive properties are additional properties which will then be used to uniquely identify the object.

E.g. Two links have the same Name & Text but different URLs >> In that case URL is the assistive property.

Ordinal identifiers: indexes of the objects with respect to mandatory and assistive properties.

E.g. Index, Location, Creation Time, etc.

UFT Object Identification 3


  1. Fetch all the mandatory properties of the object and check if the unique object description can be created. If not then, continue to step 2.
  2. Add one assistive property at a time to the object repository and try to create a unique object description.
  3. If unique description cannot be created then, UFT will use the ‘ordinal identifiers’.

The Basic UFT approach

  1. At Record time, store some Object properties so that it can be identified uniquely (Test Object: Stored Object & its properties)
  2. At Run time, identify the object using above stored Object properties (values) – independent of its location on screen (Run-time Object: Run-Time actual object available on the application under test)
  3. Perform required action on that object

This is HP UFT’s “Test Object Model”. If Object cannot be uniquely identified using above approach, then there are other methods for Object Identification – like Smart Identification. Will talk about those in future posts. Hope this post helped to get a basic understanding of how UFT identifies the Objects!

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