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Quick Comparison of IBM RFT and HP QTP the leading Functional Testing Tools

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Quick Comparison of IBM RFT & HP QTP the leading Functional Testing Tools

The software testing community is aware of the emergence of IBM Rational Functional Tester (RFT) & HP QuickTest Professional (QTP) as the popular choice of testers & programmers for their functional testing needs.

First of all let us have a quick overview of both the software testing tools, before going into a broad comparison among the functionality of the two.

1) Quick Overview – IBM RFT:
RFT is a test automation tool used by quality assurance teams to perform automated regression testing. Testers create scripts by using a test recorder, which captures a user's actions against their application under test. The recording mechanism creates a test script from the actions. The test script is produced as either a Java or Visual application, and it is represented as a series of screen shots that form a visual storyboard. Testers can edit the script using standard commands and syntax of these languages, or by acting against the screen shots in the storyboard. Test

scripts can then be executed by Rational Functional Tester to validate application functionality.

RFT provides us choice among two scripting languages and two development environments i.e. Java under Eclipse framework, alternatively Visual Basic.NET under Microsoft Visual Studio. One of the great plus point of RFT is that irrespective of the scripting language and the development environment deployed for development, we can easily integrate RFT with them while developing the tests for automation.

2) Quick Overview – HP QTP:
QTP is automated testing tool meant for performing functional and regression testing of various software applications and environments through a user interface like native GUI or web interface. It uses VBScript as the scripting language for specifying a test procedure, & for manipulating the objects & controls of the AUT. It supports a keyword and a powerful graphical user interface.

Now let us make a broad comparison among the two tools


What IBM RFT has

What HP QTP has


Certification exam is known as "Rational Functional Tester for Java" (Exam code – IBM 000-842)

Certification exam is known as "HP AIS Functional Testing v11.x Software" (Exam code – HPO M47)


Certification Exam details:

# Number of questions – 54

# Type of Question: multiple choice.

# Exam time: 75 minutes

# Passing score: 60%

Certification Exam details:

# Number of questions - 72

# Type of Question: multiple choice, drag-and-drop, and point and click

# Exam time: 105 minutes

# Passing score: 75%


Sections & objectives of certification exam:

1) ENV (navigation, configuring and enabling environments, test project, preferences)

2) REC (recording process, insert recording, script support functions)

3) VP (verification points)

4) PLY (play back, testing the test, regression testing, use of comparators)

5) LOG (types of logs, logging options, use of comparators)

6) EXT (extending scripts, modifying scripts, components of script)

7) OBJ (test object maps, pattern-based recognition, controlling recognition)

8) DAT (data-driven testing, creating and editing datapools)

Sections & objectives of certification exam:

1) Automated test planning

2) Basic test creation and how QTP works with objects

3) Basic test verification and enhancement

4) Modular automated test builds

5) QTP and ALM integration

6) Automated test troubleshooting

7) Advanced QTP Scripting

8) Expert View

9) Web applications


Latest available version is IBM RFT v8.2

Latest available version is HP QTP v11.00


RFT uses Java scripts in addition to scripting with VB script.

QTP uses VBscript as the only scripting language.


RFT offers several data driven commands for creating various test cases. But the output values are manually keyed in.

QTP offers facility to parameterize our tests. Output values are automatically generated.


RFT supports frameworks like Keyword Driven, Data Driven & Modularity.

QTP supports frameworks like Keyword Driven, Data Driven, Library Architecture & Modularity.


RFT needs quite a bit of expertise compared to QTP.

QTP is quite easy to learn in a short time.


RFT does not support Descriptive Programming approach

QTP supports Descriptive Programming approach


RFT users need good experience of programming to achieve the objective.

QTP users can generate the script documentation automatically for every action performed in the keyword view.


RFT has its own default Reporting Formats as html. However for other interfaces we can do our own custom coding.

QTP offers Standard Reporting Formats like HTML, XML etc., while QTP has its own default UI and html.


RFT users don’t enjoy the Active Screen facility.

QTP comes powered with Active Screen facility that is greatly helpful in inserting the checkpoints


The output values are manually fed using the data pool feature of RFT.

QTP automatically generates the output values at runtime.


In RFT the object identification is quite good for standard objects. However identification of custom objects is tricky.

QTP scores an edge over RFT with its excellent object identification ability for all types of objects, including custom objects.


In RFT the user actions performed during recording are perfectly replayed during the playback. However selection of multiple values using the shift key is difficult.

QTP supports multiple value selection capabilities for playing-back the scripts.


Learning RFT needs a bit of expertise compared to QTP.

QTP being GUI based, is quite easy to learn in a short time.


Execution of test script is quite good in RFT.

QTP scores slight edge over RFT in this feature.


RFT users don’t enjoy such luxury as enjoyed by QTP users.

With QTP we can easily generate most comprehensive reports due to the availability of an efficient online help 


RFT is licensed software & is less expensive compared to QTP.

QTP too is licensed software but its license cost is quite higher compared to RFT.

The objective of this article had not been to favor one at the cost of the second. It is a matter of convenience for the testers & programmers to select a tool that suits their requirements best.

Lastly both these tools have their own advantages & shortcomings, while it all depends upon the users who truly knows how to exploit them to their best advantage.

Many More articles on Test Automation Frameworks

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Comments :


# 1 Ramesh on 2011-07-30 00:26:15
What a fantastic comparison Yoginder. It been ages that I was evaluating between these two tools: IBM Rational Functional Tester and HP Quicktest Professional. Now after reading this article of yours, I am pretty much clear which tool is best for me. I would really like to appreciate your hard work.

Gr88 job.

# 2 Jonathan on 2011-07-30 01:57:43

This is Jonathan. I have a question on Loadrunner.

Our requirement is that we need to better understand the architecture used for the Java VUser protocol. According to my understanding, the Load Generator does not start up Java executables as I am not see them in the list of processes using the 'Task Manager'. The process I do see utilizing CPU and memory is the mdrv.exe process (primary Load Generator process). Do the JVM processes run inside this native executable via JNI?

The primary reason for asking this question is that we'd like to instrument the client as well as the server JVM to observe the message traffic between them. Based on what I'm seeing this is probably not possible given the Load Generator architecture.

Can you please share some thoughts in this?

# 3 Chaitanya on 2011-07-30 22:53:04
Hi... Thanks for the Article.It was of Great Use...and the Timing was also right... as we are searching in the Internet for the differences between the Two Tools.Thanks Again... Chaitanya.

# 4 Yogindernath on 2011-07-30 23:34:26
What protocol are you using? I guess with HTTP (which is C based) you don't have any Java on the LoadRunner side.

# 5 Ramamurthy P on 2011-08-01 09:17:07
Hi yoginder,

I like ur article and great work. i would like to askto u on load runner. my requirement in load testing for concurrent Vusers. first 100Vusers ar login they will do some actions or transactions for all scenarios(total scritps or scenarios are five) they will run for one hour, after one hour i want add the 50Vusers for one hour duaration . i want total 150vusers should be in active for 2 hours. i like that i want add the 50Vusers for every one hour. how i can set the Scenarios in the scenario schedule and how i can intialize the Vusers for every one hour with 50Vsuers.

Plz tell me in need very urgent.

Many Thanks in advance.

Thanks and regards,
Raamurthy P.

# 6 Raju Roy on 2011-08-03 11:03:56
Can anyone tell me Windows 7 supports QTP 11 along with Internet Explorer 9. Thanks in advance.


# 7 Yogindernath on 2011-08-04 10:39:38
Yes Raju. QTP 11 supports Internet Explorer 9. You would need QTPWEB_00078 patch for QTP.

This is the link:

# 8 Bono on 2011-08-04 20:38:42
Wham bam thank you, ma\'am, my questions are answered!

# 9 Honeysuckle on 2011-08-05 17:22:51
I really appreciate free, scucicnt, reliable data like this.

# 10 Michael on 2011-08-06 03:03:38
Hi everyone,

Hope you are doing well. I have a query with QTP 11 and a WPF based application. It is recognizing the top level window as WpfWindow but inside, it is not recognizing anything, be it Button, textbox or any other standard control. Till yesterday only, it was working fine but all of a sudden, QTP has failed to recognize objects inside my WpfWindow. The strangest part is that it is recognizing the top level WpfWindow.

Is there anyone who can solve this weird QTP issue.

# 11 Anmol Narang on 2011-08-09 01:13:33

I have just started my career. I am working in an MNC. where I have been given manual testing. But my interest is in Automation. I have learned QTP tool also. Can you please guide me the certifications. So that after doing that I can apply for automation.

# 12 on 2011-08-28 08:55:27
A very good comparison about What IBM RFT has and What HP QTP has

# 13 dinesh on 2013-02-19 17:29:44
Is there anyone who can help me out in finding the difference between microsoft visual studio coded ui VS IBM Rational Functional Tester.
and also which one of these is better Testing Tool.
i have just gone through the basics where i analyse that:
RFT is slower to record and much more comlicated then coded ui.

# 14 nag on 2018-04-06 02:14:47
Hi I have a question
when we are working in the real time Is record option available in RFT(rational functional tester)?

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