Windows XP Embedded, Part II

You can think of Windows XP Embedded as a slimmed-down, customized version of Windows XP, intended for use in PC-like devices such as game consoles and information kiosks. While I was investigating Windows XP Embedded systems — by way of conversations with a lot of engineers at Microsoft — I noticed a sort of a knowledge gap between engineers who work with XP Embedded and engineers who perform testing. Quite a few engineers who perform testing as their primary job role do not have a complete grasp of what Windows XP Embedded is, and quite a few engineers who work with XP Embedded as their primary role do not have up-to-date knowledge of the latest test automation techniques. I set out to help bridge that knowledge gap. I contacted Mike Hall, a senior Microsoft technical product manager, and an expert on Windows XP Embedded. After several days of research we discovered some interesting, currently unpublished, approaches for creating UI test automation for Windows XP Embedded systems. In a nutshell, it is possible to create an XP Embedded UI test automation "component" which exercises the XP Embedded system through the system’s UI. This test automation component can then be added to the XP Embedded image and then be used to test the XP Embedded system. I will be presenting details of the technique at the MEDC 2007 conference (Mobile & Embedded DevCon) from May 1 – 3 in La Vegas. The use of embedded systems and mobile systems is growing very fast and there’s no better way to get up to speed quickly than by attending a conference like the MEDC. See for details.
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