To ensure that newly created tasks are working properly before they are put into production, the Task Builder includes a variety of testing and debugging features that provide verbose, real time data about a task, which aids a developer in monitoring and debugging tasks as they are being constructed. The developer can perform a series of “test runs” within the Task Builder interface and use a variety of intuitive debugging and diagnostic features located in the Debug pane to determine the cause of a problematic task.
The Debug pane contains eight views which are separated by tabs (as shown below). The Output tab is focused by default and provides step by step information about a the running task. Other helpful debug views include Variables, Attachments, Watches and much more.
Various options are available and vary depending on which Debug view is currently focused. Such options can be accessed by right-clicking anywhere inside the Debug pane. A different pop-up menu will appear for each tab currently focused displaying the options available for that particular debug view. For example, if the Output view is currently selected or focused, the pop-up menu would include options to copy, clear or save the current data to a file. If the Variables view is selected, the right-click menu would include options to inspect a variable as well as add, rename or delete a variable.
The available debug views are as follows:
Output: Contains debug and general information about the currently running task
Variable: Lists the AutoMate variables that are contained in the current task
Breakpoints: Lists the breakpoints associated with the current task
Watches: Shows all currently set watches and displays the evaluated values for the watch variables and expressions as the task runs
Attachments: Shows the file attachments that are attached to the task
Labels: Lists all labels in the task with the label name and the step number
Comments: Shows each comment in the task along with its step number
Stack: Displays the depth of the currently running task. When a subtask is running, the name of the parent task is shown below it. If a subtask within a task is running, its immediate parent is listed below it and then the parent of the parent.
A comprehensive Status Bar is located on the foot of the Task Builder interface, directly below the available tabs of the Debug pane. The Status Bar's job is primarily to display real time status and progress of a running task. It allows messages to be viewed while still viewing the total Task Builder screen, which can be very convenient during testing periods. The Status Bar is divided into sections, each of which shows particular information about the running task (as shown above). The available parameters are:
Current Step / Total Steps - Shows the current step being executed as well the total number of steps the task holds.
Execution Status - Provides status of the currently running task.
Progress Bar - Graphically shoes the progress of a running task.
Running Step Icon - Shows the icon associated with the currently running action/step.
Execution details - Shows verbose information about the running task.
NOTE: The Autohide button (top/left corner of debug pane) allows the Debug pane to be autohidden providing a larger Steps pane viewing area, which is useful when viewing tasks that contain a large amount of steps.
Debugging Tasks Overview