The Watir gem started out as driver for IE through the OLE protocol. In 2012, version 4.0.0 changed Watir into a metagem that, based on the desired browser, used either Watir-Classic (the original implementation) or Watir-Webdriver (the Selenium backed implementation that supported additional browsers). The soon to be released Watir 6.0 will continue the evolution to being just Watir-Webdriver.
You can find out more about Watir 6.0 from:
- The latest Watir podcast (episode 56) (which Dave McNulla has revived)
- The Watir news feed (on the new Watir homepage)
- The Watir change log (in Watir-Webdriver’s new repository location)
What does this mean for Watir-Classic users?
Must update to using:
This is another reminder that support for Watir-Classic is limited. If possible, you should switch to Watir-Webdriver.
What does this mean for Watir-Webdriver users?
Will get a deprecation warning unless they switch to:
The default browser will be changed from Firefox to Chrome. This means that anyone using the default browser to start Firefox:
browser = Watir::Browser.new
Will now need to explicitly specify Firefox:
browser = Watir::Browser.new :firefox