Will Katalon remain free eventually?

I am asking this because at every release Katalon team is taking away at least one good feature from the free version. Now with the release of 7.3 version, 2 good features are taken away-

  • Run from here ability
  • Cannot disable a step from keyword mode

Katalon claims that they will always keep a free version for individual use. But how Katalon is removing the features one by one from free version, either it will no longer be available as free or user will not be able to use free version because not enough features available to be able to use. :disappointed:


More importantly they’ve deprecated the “Enable/Disable logging executed steps” and without this the logs are meaningless! Hope we all should move away to something else soon.

agree, Katalon team lists what improvements/bug fixes have taken place in new releases but they don’t mention what they have taken away from free versions.It’s all getting done silently. They are not transparent I would say.


See this:


Debug seems to have gone to Enterprise only in my latest update - is that a mistake too?


It’s not great customer service to switch things off a) without warning and b) I can’t even see it in the release notes which suggests you’ve hidden it.
It was working fine in version 7.2.9 which was only a couple of weeks ago.
Having to jump from “free” to “$700” per year for single use version is not affordable for a lot of your users.
Can you please provide a list of all the previously free functions you are (or have) going to remove so I can decide whether to look for alternative.

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To the best of my knowledge, the intention of moving features from KS to KSE and the list of moved features expressed in the brochure has been constant for some months now, so I am afraid I can’t address your concern, as I think the answer to your question is in the brochure.

If you’re looking for more in-depth info, please send an email to business@katalon.com.

Ok thanks @ThanhTo
I’m just a bit worried I’ll do my next upgrade and find the Run button is gone too. :disappointed:

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@Andrew_Halliday I feel your pain. This behavior is outrageous! They will remove everything sooner or later silently so they will one day force you to buy something that was completely free and you relied your tests on.

In my case, I recommended this tool to customer because they have junior testers who want to learn automation, did POC, they liked Katalon, I’m working on another POC using free version. They are planing to buy enterprise but now, no way!

First there are tons of bugs in Katalon, they are not being fixed and new ones are constantly introduced. So once a tool promising help and faster script development has become a slow down tool which is very expensive and lately extremely annoying, slow, unstable and unreliable.

  • Recorder is making more mess than helping, it can’t handle simple dynamic ID or change in DOM, this was never usable anyway.
  • Free has become expensive overnight. (And they rely on opensource technologies!)
  • No more debugging! Isn’t this Eclipse feature anyway?
  • Once stable has become unstable.
  • Script mode is actually removing parts of your code by autoformatting code!
  • Helping UI is overwhelming and annoying and it’s not helping anyone.
  • They will eventually remove ‘Play’ button also.

You still trust them? I’m done.


@Luka_Mlikota is there an alternative though? I’ve invested so much of my time in this.
I appreciate that businesses need to make money, but I don’t think this is the right way to do it. I don’t use it enough to warrant a big expense, but wouldn’t mind paying something for the core features - lots of other enterprises allow this - sometimes called a “hobbyist” level - like $10pm for the basics but none of the true enterprise stuff.
It’s the fact that features are being removed without notice that annoys me the most.

I’m not sure at the moment, but I’m thinking in the following direction:

  • Webdriver is standardized and it’s here to stay for a long time
  • Selenium is annoying in 21st century because you have to use wait methods for each step (why doesn’t it wait for itself is a mystery to me… maybe because it’s old Java architecture) and that adds a huge amount of boiler plate code and wastes time (money)
  • Page Object design pattern is cumbersome and time consuming if you have UI with > 200 elements
  • There will never be real recorder which will generate reliable relative XPath because WWW is a mess
  • Katalon is a proof how less is more, their UI is confusing and you are forced to click your way trough everything (yeah it has script mode with bugs which are “auto formatting” your code and drives you insane), it’s like a drug … hooks you in the beginning with promises, time savings, easy for beginners (I would rather explain what is Xpath then how to use Katalon “intuitive UI” to beginners because it’s easier then explain this UI mess)

I see that future of UI testing in open sourced JavaScript in combination with Webdriver or Electron or Chrome CDP because they are waiting for elements by themselves and they have more natural APIs than Selenium and some of them like Taiko can rely on locators which are not DOM related. Some of them are:

  • Nightwatch.js (Webdriver)
  • Taiko (from the creators of Selenium, has few cool features but it doesn’t use Webdriver, uses Chorme CDP protocol which is nice approach but it’s young product)
  • Cypress (Electron, it’s not really that free since dashboard is licensed and parallel testing)
  • WebdriverIO
  • ???

Nice overview of JS frameworks in 2020:

Hope that helps. I also recommend you take a look at the OxygenIDE which is unlike Katalon open sourced, also has IDE, based on Selenium and Appium and guys @focis.automation are really nice!

thanks @Luka_Mlikota - I’ll have a look at those resources.

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We caught this the other day and the same it appears with debug as well. This is unfortunate as we here were just bragging about how much we like Katalon Studio over other payed/license QA applications.

It leaves a bad taste in your mouth when you start working with an open source tool that sets the bar high, only to secretly remove features you come to depend on that makes such a difference. I mean that is why we use it and why we continued to not only use it, but sing it 's praises. Again, unfortunately with the current pandemic - I don’t see how this was a win for anyone using this product short or long term. We also fully expect that Katalon Analytics will also be the next paid licence product we will have to pay for to get summary reports and our output logs/data… pretty sad reality I guess… Thanks for sharing what we thought we confirmed.

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Free is not open sourced by default. Some people are learning this a hard way.

Yes very well said all ur points are very relevant.

A post was split to a new topic: Scripts are constantly failing due to timeouts