We are planning on building an RDA solution that might be long running. The users are wondering if they can check their emails or use skype while the process is running? If they do this, will this affect the automation process?
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It would depend on how you are automating the applications. Some methods of automation may change the application that is in focus. This could cause the application to steal focus and the user may accidently type into it which could have negative results. So, you really need to test how your automation behaves. Generally though, best results are achieved when the user allows the automation to run. If you have long running automations you may want to provision a virtual machine for the user to run it on.