Use CATS to test your content

The Content Automation Testing Solution (CATS) is a self-service tool that you use to test that your Docs.com content meets basic guidelines. You can select different test cases to run like check for missing meta-data or image alt-text, or SEO rule violations. For descriptions and priorities of the CATS test cases, see CATS Content validation checks.

Most often you'd use CATS to test new content. But if you're new to CATS, you may want to do a one-time audit of your product or service content set.

Test new topic

  1. Go to CATS.
  2. Click Docs Content Validation.
  3. Enter a short descriptive Run Name.
  4. Enter the staged URL for new content. Or, if you have several topics, Provide an URL list for faster test results.
  5. TOC Node Options depend on the URLs you enter. Typically for new topics, Individual page only is all you need.
  6. Select Test Cases. Select others as they apply to your content. Don't use HTMLFormat.
  7. Start run.
  8. When Progress is 100%, click on Run Result.
  9. If Pass Rate isn't 100%, click the numbers in the Failed column to see what failed.
  10. Fix any issues before signing off on your PR.

Test collection of topics for product or service

  1. Go to CATS.
  2. Click Docs Content Validation.
  3. Enter a short descriptive Run Name.
  4. Enter your published index page like https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/virtual-machines/windows/index. For faster results, Provide an URL list.
  5. If you just entered the index page URL, select Include pages in TOC. If you added an Excel list, Individual page only is all you need.
  6. Select Test Cases. Select others as they apply to your content. Don't use HTMLFormat.
  7. Start run.
  8. When Progress is 100%, click on Run Result.
  9. If Pass Rate isn't 100%, click the numbers in the Failed column to see what failed.
  10. Fix any issues before signing off on your PR for publishing.

Tips for faster results

  • Only test your new topics
  • Do your one-time testing for your entire product or service area during off hours. Depending on the number of topics you have, it may take an hour or more to complete the test.
  • Run the test cases off an Excel list of URLs. This way the tool doesn't have to crawl through TOC links.
  • Don't select the HTMLFormat test case. That's intended for content engineering.
  • Be selective on what test cases you run. Pick your P1s.

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TOC node options and when to use them

Screenshot that shows TOC Node Options in CATS tool.

  • Individual page only just checks the URL you entered. This option should be what you need most of the time.
  • Include linked pages only works for landing pages without the typical TOC.md file like https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/. Most contributors won't ever need to use this option.
  • Include subpages checks the URL you entered and topics listed under it in the TOC like the Planned maintenance for Windows virtual machines topic.

    Screenshot of TOC item with subpages

  • Include pages in TOC checks everything in the TOC that's associated with the URL you entered. You'd use this when you're doing a one-time audit of all the content for your product or service. Use sparingly.

Feature request, bug, or question?