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Appium Desired Capabilities

Desired Capabilities are keys and values encoded in a JSON object, sent by Appium clients to the server when a new automation session is requested. They tell the Appium drivers all kinds of important things about how you want your test to work. Each Appium client builds capabilities in a way specific to the client's language, but at the end of the day, they are sent over to Appium as JSON objects.

Some important capabilities are demonstrated in the following example:

{
    "platformName": "iOS",
    "platformVersion": "11.0",
    "deviceName": "iPhone 7",
    "automationName": "XCUITest",
    "app": "/path/to/my.app"
}

This set of Desired Capabilities expresses the desire for Appium to begin an automation session on an iPhone 7 simulator with iOS 11, using the XCUITest Driver, with /path/to/my.app as the app under test.

There are many, many Capabilities that Appium supports. Capabilities also differ by driver, though there are a standard set that most drivers pay attention to. What follows are a series of tables outlining the various Desired Capabilities available in general and for specific drivers.

General Capabilities

These Capabilities span multiple drivers.

Capability Description Values
automationName Which automation engine to use Appium (default) or Selendroid or UiAutomator2 or Espresso for Android or XCUITest for iOS or YouiEngine for application built with You.i Engine
platformName Which mobile OS platform to use iOS, Android, or FirefoxOS
platformVersion Mobile OS version e.g., 7.1, 4.4
deviceName The kind of mobile device or emulator to use iPhone Simulator, iPad Simulator, iPhone Retina 4-inch, Android Emulator, Galaxy S4, etc.... On iOS, this should be one of the valid devices returned by instruments with instruments -s devices. On Android this capability is currently ignored, though it remains required.
app The absolute local path or remote http URL to an .ipa or .apk file, or a .zip containing one of these. Appium will attempt to install this app binary on the appropriate device first. Note that this capability is not required for Android if you specify appPackage and appActivity capabilities (see below). Incompatible with browserName. /abs/path/to/my.apk or http://myapp.com/app.ipa
browserName Name of mobile web browser to automate. Should be an empty string if automating an app instead. 'Safari' for iOS and 'Chrome', 'Chromium', or 'Browser' for Android
newCommandTimeout How long (in seconds) Appium will wait for a new command from the client before assuming the client quit and ending the session e.g. 60
language (Sim/Emu-only) Language to set for the simulator / emulator. On Android, available only on API levels 22 and below e.g. fr
locale (Sim/Emu-only) Locale to set for the simulator / emulator. e.g. fr_CA
udid Unique device identifier of the connected physical device e.g. 1ae203187fc012g
orientation (Sim/Emu-only) start in a certain orientation LANDSCAPE or PORTRAIT
autoWebview Move directly into Webview context. Default false true, false
noReset Don't reset app state before this session. See here for more details true, false
fullReset Perform a complete reset. See here for more details true, false
eventTimings Enable or disable the reporting of the timings for various Appium-internal events (e.g., the start and end of each command, etc.). Defaults to false. To enable, use true. The timings are then reported as events property on response to querying the current session. See the event timing docs for the the structure of this response. e.g., true
enablePerformanceLogging (Web and webview only) Enable Chromedriver's (on Android) or Safari's (on iOS) performance logging (default false) true, false
printPageSourceOnFindFailure When a find operation fails, print the current page source. Defaults to false. e.g., true

Android Only

These Capabilities are available only on Android-based drivers (like UiAutomator2 for example).

Capability Description Values
appActivity Activity name for the Android activity you want to launch from your package. This often needs to be preceded by a . (e.g., .MainActivity instead of MainActivity). By default this capability is received from the package manifest (action: android.intent.action.MAIN , category: android.intent.category.LAUNCHER) MainActivity, .Settings
appPackage Java package of the Android app you want to run. By default this capability is received from the package manifest (@package attribute value) com.example.android.myApp, com.android.settings
appWaitActivity Activity name/names, comma separated, for the Android activity you want to wait for. By default the value of this capability is the same as for appActivity. You must set it to the very first focused application activity name in case it is different from the one which is set as appActivity if your capability has appActivity and appPackage. SplashActivity, SplashActivity,OtherActivity, *, *.SplashActivity
appWaitPackage Java package of the Android app you want to wait for. By default the value of this capability is the same as for appActivity com.example.android.myApp, com.android.settings
appWaitDuration Timeout in milliseconds used to wait for the appWaitActivity to launch (default 20000) 30000
deviceReadyTimeout Timeout in seconds while waiting for device to become ready 5
androidCoverage Fully qualified instrumentation class. Passed to -w in adb shell am instrument -e coverage true -w com.my.Pkg/com.my.Pkg.instrumentation.MyInstrumentation
androidCoverageEndIntent A broadcast action implemented by yourself which is used to dump coverage into file system. Passed to -a in adb shell am broadcast -a com.example.pkg.END_EMMA
androidDeviceReadyTimeout Timeout in seconds used to wait for a device to become ready after booting e.g., 30
androidInstallTimeout Timeout in milliseconds used to wait for an apk to install to the device. Defaults to 90000 e.g., 90000
androidInstallPath The name of the directory on the device in which the apk will be push before install. Defaults to /data/local/tmp e.g. /sdcard/Downloads/
adbPort Port used to connect to the ADB server (default 5037) 5037
systemPort systemPort used to connect to appium-uiautomator2-server, default is 8200 in general and selects one port from 8200 to 8299. When you run tests in parallel, you must adjust the port to avoid conflicts. Read Parallel Testing Setup Guide for more details. e.g., 8201
remoteAdbHost Optional remote ADB server host e.g.: 192.168.0.101
androidDeviceSocket Devtools socket name. Needed only when tested app is a Chromium embedding browser. The socket is open by the browser and Chromedriver connects to it as a devtools client. e.g., chrome_devtools_remote
avd Name of avd to launch e.g., api19
avdLaunchTimeout How long to wait in milliseconds for an avd to launch and connect to ADB (default 120000) 300000
avdReadyTimeout How long to wait in milliseconds for an avd to finish its boot animations (default 120000) 300000
avdArgs Additional emulator arguments used when launching an avd e.g., -netfast
useKeystore Use a custom keystore to sign apks, default false true or false
keystorePath Path to custom keystore, default ~/.android/debug.keystore e.g., /path/to.keystore
keystorePassword Password for custom keystore e.g., foo
keyAlias Alias for key e.g., androiddebugkey
keyPassword Password for key e.g., foo
chromedriverExecutable The absolute local path to webdriver executable (if Chromium embedder provides its own webdriver, it should be used instead of original chromedriver bundled with Appium) /abs/path/to/webdriver
chromedriverExecutableDir The absolute path to a directory to look for Chromedriver executables in, for automatic discovery of compatible Chromedrivers /abs/path/to/chromedriver/directory
chromedriverChromeMappingFile The absolute path to a file which maps Chromedriver versions to the minimum Chrome that it supports /abs/path/to/mapping.json
autoWebviewTimeout Amount of time to wait for Webview context to become active, in ms. Defaults to 2000 e.g. 4
intentAction Intent action which will be used to start activity (default android.intent.action.MAIN) e.g.android.intent.action.MAIN, android.intent.action.VIEW
intentCategory Intent category which will be used to start activity (default android.intent.category.LAUNCHER) e.g. android.intent.category.LAUNCHER, android.intent.category.APP_CONTACTS
intentFlags Flags that will be used to start activity (default 0x10200000) e.g. 0x10200000
optionalIntentArguments Additional intent arguments that will be used to start activity. See Intent arguments e.g. --esn <EXTRA_KEY>, --ez <EXTRA_KEY> <EXTRA_BOOLEAN_VALUE>, etc.
dontStopAppOnReset Doesn't stop the process of the app under test, before starting the app using adb. If the app under test is created by another anchor app, setting this false, allows the process of the anchor app to be still alive, during the start of the test app using adb. In other words, with dontStopAppOnReset set to true, we will not include the -S flag in the adb shell am start call. With this capability omitted or set to false, we include the -S flag. Default false true or false
unicodeKeyboard Enable Unicode input, default false true or false
resetKeyboard Reset keyboard to its original state, after running Unicode tests with unicodeKeyboard capability. Ignored if used alone. Default false true or false
noSign Skip checking and signing of app with debug keys, will work only with UiAutomator and not with selendroid, default false true or false
ignoreUnimportantViews Calls the setCompressedLayoutHierarchy() uiautomator function. This capability can speed up test execution, since Accessibility commands will run faster ignoring some elements. The ignored elements will not be findable, which is why this capability has also been implemented as a toggle-able setting as well as a capability. Defaults to false true or false
disableAndroidWatchers Disables android watchers that watch for application not responding and application crash, this will reduce cpu usage on android device/emulator. This capability will work only with UiAutomator and not with selendroid, default false true or false
chromeOptions Allows passing chromeOptions capability for ChromeDriver. For more information see chromeOptions chromeOptions: {args: ['--disable-popup-blocking']}
recreateChromeDriverSessions Kill ChromeDriver session when moving to a non-ChromeDriver webview. Defaults to false true or false
nativeWebScreenshot In a web context, use native (adb) method for taking a screenshot, rather than proxying to ChromeDriver. Defaults to false true or false
androidScreenshotPath The name of the directory on the device in which the screenshot will be put. Defaults to /data/local/tmp e.g. /sdcard/screenshots/
autoGrantPermissions Have Appium automatically determine which permissions your app requires and grant them to the app on install. Defaults to false. If noReset is true, this capability doesn't work. true or false
networkSpeed Set the network speed emulation. Specify the maximum network upload and download speeds. Defaults to full ['full','gsm', 'edge', 'hscsd', 'gprs', 'umts', 'hsdpa', 'lte', 'evdo'] Check -netspeed option more info about speed emulation for avds
gpsEnabled Toggle gps location provider for emulators before starting the session. By default the emulator will have this option enabled or not according to how it has been provisioned. true or false
isHeadless Set this capability to true to run the Emulator headless when device display is not needed to be visible. false is the default value. isHeadless is also support for iOS, check XCUITest-specific capabilities. e.g., true
uiautomator2ServerLaunchTimeout Timeout in milliseconds used to wait for an uiAutomator2 server to launch. Defaults to 20000 e.g., 20000
uiautomator2ServerInstallTimeout Timeout in milliseconds used to wait for an uiAutomator2 server to be installed. Defaults to 20000 e.g., 20000
otherApps App or list of apps (as a JSON array) to install prior to running tests e.g., "/path/to/app.apk", https://www.example.com/url/to/app.apk, ["/path/to/app-a.apk", "/path/to/app-b.apk"]

iOS Only

These Capabilities are available only on the XCUITest Driver and the deprecated UIAutomation Driver.

Capability Description Values
calendarFormat (Sim-only) Calendar format to set for the iOS Simulator e.g. gregorian
bundleId Bundle ID of the app under test. Useful for starting an app on a real device or for using other caps which require the bundle ID during test startup. To run a test on a real device using the bundle ID, you may omit the 'app' capability, but you must provide 'udid'. e.g. io.appium.TestApp
udid Unique device identifier of the connected physical device e.g. 1ae203187fc012g
launchTimeout Amount of time in ms to wait for instruments before assuming it hung and failing the session e.g. 20000
locationServicesEnabled (Sim-only) Force location services to be either on or off. Default is to keep current sim setting. true or false
locationServicesAuthorized (Sim-only) Set location services to be authorized or not authorized for app via plist, so that location services alert doesn't pop up. Default is to keep current sim setting. Note that if you use this setting you MUST also use the bundleId capability to send in your app's bundle ID. true or false
autoAcceptAlerts Accept all iOS alerts automatically if they pop up. This includes privacy access permission alerts (e.g., location, contacts, photos). Default is false. Does not work on XCUITest-based tests. true or false
autoDismissAlerts Dismiss all iOS alerts automatically if they pop up. This includes privacy access permission alerts (e.g., location, contacts, photos). Default is false. Does not work on XCUITest-based tests. true or false
nativeInstrumentsLib Use native intruments lib (ie disable instruments-without-delay). true or false
nativeWebTap (Sim-only) Enable "real", non-javascript-based web taps in Safari. Default: false. Warning: depending on viewport size/ratio this might not accurately tap an element true or false
safariInitialUrl (Sim-only) (>= 8.1) Initial safari url, default is a local welcome page e.g. https://www.github.com
safariAllowPopups (Sim-only) Allow javascript to open new windows in Safari. Default keeps current sim setting true or false
safariIgnoreFraudWarning (Sim-only) Prevent Safari from showing a fraudulent website warning. Default keeps current sim setting. true or false
safariOpenLinksInBackground (Sim-only) Whether Safari should allow links to open in new windows. Default keeps current sim setting. true or false
keepKeyChains (Sim-only) Whether to keep keychains (Library/Keychains) when appium session is started/finished true or false
localizableStringsDir Where to look for localizable strings. Default en.lproj en.lproj
processArguments Arguments to pass to the AUT using instruments e.g., -myflag
interKeyDelay The delay, in ms, between keystrokes sent to an element when typing. e.g., 100
showIOSLog Whether to show any logs captured from a device in the appium logs. Default false true or false
sendKeyStrategy strategy to use to type test into a test field. Simulator default: oneByOne. Real device default: grouped oneByOne, grouped or setValue
screenshotWaitTimeout Max timeout in sec to wait for a screenshot to be generated. default: 10 e.g., 5
waitForAppScript The ios automation script used to determined if the app has been launched, by default the system wait for the page source not to be empty. The result must be a boolean e.g. true;, target.elements().length > 0;, $.delay(5000); true;
webviewConnectRetries Number of times to send connection message to remote debugger, to get webview. Default: 8 e.g., 12
appName The display name of the application under test. Used to automate backgrounding the app in iOS 9+. e.g., UICatalog
customSSLCert (Sim only) Add an SSL certificate to IOS Simulator. e.g.
-----BEGIN CERTIFICATE-----MIIFWjCCBEKg...
-----END CERTIFICATE-----
webkitResponseTimeout (Real device only) Set the time, in ms, to wait for a response from WebKit in a Safari session. Defaults to 5000 e.g., 10000

iOS Only, using XCUITest

(For XCUITest-specific capabilities, please refer to the documentation on the XCUITest Driver repo itself.)

You.i Engine Only

(For You.i Engine-specific capabilities, please refer to the documentation on the You.i Engine driver itself.)