It’s been 9 months since I put in a bug on Microsoft Connect for the IE visible property not working when running in a remote runspace.  While I completely understand the security reason to not allow a person to monkey with a desktop that may not be their own, I want to plead my case to allow it via some/any method.

I am currently trying to automate a whole series of test cases that require remote systems to act as launch points for browsing to websites.  These websites may or may not have Popup windows that appear during surfing.  Not a problem.  Couple of ways to launch IE and browse to a website on a remote system.  InternetExplorer.Application COM object or just creating and starting an IE process are the first two that come to mind.  The problem you will run into is everything that is invoked through a runspace seems to suppress any interaction with the desktop.  You set the visible flag on the COM object and nothing happens.  Launch an IE process on the remote machine and IExplore.exe starts running but is not visible.

“Why do you want to see these windows so bad?” you might ask?  Well, the short answer is, I want to see the popup windows as they would normally appear.  It is critical to my testing that this happens and I grab the html content of each popup.  I could not find a way to get a handle on a hidden (because all desktop interaction is being suppressed) popup window that is created from a JavaScript Window.Open() function.  Kinda frustrating.

If there was a way to get a handle on these Ninja (read: hidden) popup windows then I wouldn’t have much of an issue.  Please Microsoft, give me a way to either grab these hidden popups or allow me to set IE to visible. 🙂