New to Telerik Test Studio? Download free 30-day trial

Bind Test to External Data Source

Test Studio allows you to use external data files for data driven testing. In this article you can read how to associate a test to an external data source.

If you have already related the external data source to a test in the project, follow this link to go through a complete scenario for data driven test with external data source.

Bind the External Data Source to Test

Once you have added a data source definition to your test project, you are ready to bind your test to that data source.

Choose a test from the Project Explorer and click the Bind Test button from the Data Source section in the Project ribbon.


The Bind test to data source dialog opens with the option to choose a data source. Click the Select Data Source drop-down and select the one you have defined. If your source is an Excel spreadsheet, choose which sheet from the spreadsheet to use. Once you select a sheet, the data from that sheet will be read and displayed in the dialog. Check out that the first row of the spreadsheet is used to define the column names.

!Bind test to data source window Select Data Source
Choose Data Source to Bind Excel Sheet Selected


You need to have Microsoft Excel installed on this machine and/or the Microsoft Access Database Engine 2010 - see this article for more information.

External Data Source Options

Some of the supported type of files to add as external data source allow you to limit the rows of it to use. This option is applicable for Excel file or SQL database.

Limit the Rows to Use from Excel File

If you need to use only part of the rows in an Excel sheet, you can enable the Filter data between rows box under the Configure section.

  • If left unchecked, all data rows will be used during the test run.
  • To limit which rows to use, check that box and select which rows you want to use by clicking the numeric up/down counters, and then Update to apply changes.

filter data filter data

Use Specific Data from SQL Data Source

If your source is a SQL database, you can use a T-SQL query to select the data you want. Using T-SQL, you can get as complex as you need in your SQL select statement. Check out the example below.

SQL database

Once your select statement is entered, click the Update button to test the results - the Preview table shows these.

Confirm Data Binding

When the external data source is set as desired, click the OK button to bind it to the selected test. Now the external file is associated with the test and you can access the data values to bind the steps.


Check how to modify the external data source after it is referenced in the Test Studio project.

Remove Data Binding

To remove the external data source associated with a test, right click that test on the Project tab and select Remove Data Binding.

Remove Data Binding

In this article