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Loris: Autotest for Javascript

November 6th, 2009

I’ve [previously written a number of posts on javascript and autotest](http://monket.net/blog/tag/autotest/). Explaining how to integrate javascript lint, unit tests, and growl with the ruby [Autotest](http://ph7spot.com/articles/getting_started_with_autotest) project.

While this all worked, it felt a little clunky as Autotest doesn’t natively support the idea of running multiple tasks one after the other. Rather than hack at the Autotest codebase, I thought I’d get some ruby experience by rolling my own autotest-style framework. Not great for reuse of code, but a great way for me to learn :)

## Loris

Loris will monitor your project and run [Javascript Lint](http://www.javascriptlint.com/) and [JS Test Driver](http://code.google.com/p/js-test-driver/) whenever a file changes, it will report the results to the command line and using [Growl](http://growl.info/). If required, Loris will automatically start the JS Test Driver server and register your default browser with it.

### Installing

Loris is hosted on [Gemcutter](http://gemcutter.org/), so you need to install their gem if you haven’t already.

sudo gem update --system
sudo gem install gemcutter
gem tumble

Then to install Loris, just run the following:

sudo gem install loris

Loris has no command line options, and no configuration file (at the moment). It looks for configurations files to decide which tasks to run.

### Configuring Javascript Lint

To enable Javascript Lint, create a `jsl.conf` file in the folder where you run Loris. This should be a standard Javascript Lint config file. If you need here is an [example Javascript Lint config file](http://mike.kruckenberg.com/archives/2009/03/configuration-options-for-javascript-lint.html)

You just need to specify which files Javascipt Lint should process. For example:

### Files
# Specify which files to lint
# Use "+recurse" to enable recursion (disabled by default).
# To add a set of files, use "+process FileName", "+process Folder\Path\*.js",
# or "+process Folder\Path\*.htm".
+process src/js/*.js
+process tests/js/*.js

If no `jsl.conf` file is found, the Javascript Lint task is silently skipped.

### Configuring JS Test Driver

To enable JS Test Driver, create a `jsTestDriver.conf` file in the folder where you run Loris. This should be a standard [JS Test Driver config file](http://code.google.com/p/js-test-driver/wiki/ConfigurationFile).

This should specify which files JS Test Driver should process, and how it connects to the JS Test Driver server. For example:

server: http://localhost:9876

  - tests/qunit/equiv.js
  - tests/qunit/QUnitAdapter.js
  - src/js/*.js
  - tests/js/*.js

If no `jsTestDriver.conf` file is found, the JS Test Driver task is silently skipped.

To make it really simple to run JS Test Driver tests, if the server is set to run on `localhost`, and Loris doesn’t detect one running, it will automatically start one, and register your default browser with it.

This makes it a one step process to get automated tests up and running.

### Running

To run, open a command line window, navigate to the root folder of your project, and run:


Loris will run Javascript Lint, and JS Test Driver tasks (if it finds their configuration files), and will output the results on the command line.

#### Example output

Javascript Lint
All files are clean
0 error(s), 0 warning(s)
JS Test Driver
All tests pass
[PASSED] GreeterTest.testGreet
  [LOG] JsTestDriver Hello World!
[PASSED] GreeterTest.testGoodbye
[PASSED] GreeterTest.testSetName
[PASSED] GreeterTest.testSetNameAndNameParamter
[PASSED] Asserts.test OK true succeeds
[PASSED] Asserts.test Equals succeeds
  [LOG] about to call assertEquals
[PASSED] Asserts.test Same assert succeeds
[PASSED] Lifecycle.test Setup and Teardown are run, and can contain assertions
Total 8 tests (Passed: 8; Fails: 0; Errors: 0) (3.00 ms)
  Firefox MacIntel: Run 8 tests (Passed: 8; Fails: 0; Errors 0) (3.00 ms)

Every time you make a change to a Javascript file, or a configuration file, Loris will automatically re-run Javascript Lint and JS Test Driver. So you can instant feedback on your changes.

Loris will clear the command line when re-running tasks. So the latest run is always at the top of you command line.

Loris will also report a summary of each task using [Growl](http://growl.info/) (if it is installed). This allows you to get quick feedback without needing to refer back to the command line on every change.

### Requirements

JS Test Driver is written in Java, so you will need to have Java installed to run it.

To get Growl notifications, you will need to install either [Growl for OSX](http://growl.info/) or [Growl for Windows](http://www.growlforwindows.com/). Growl for Windows requires the [.NET Framework 2.0+](http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=0856EACB-4362-4B0D-8EDD-AAB15C5E04F5&displaylang=en).

### Caveat

Loris is pretty limited at the moment, I just wired up the basics to get it running for a work project.

It doesn’t have any configuration options at the moment, so you have to follow it’s assumptions for now. I’m happy to add configuration options for any element as required.

Loris only comes with a few tasks (Javascript Lint, JS Test Driver, JSpec, and RSpec), but I hope to allow it have new tasks added via new gems (kind of similar to Autotest).

It comes packaged with a version of Javascript Lint, and JS Test Driver, and will use it’s own versions. It only includes the OSX and Windows versions of Javascript Lint.

If you want to modify the code, just fork the [Loris github project](http://github.com/karl/loris)

In a previous post I detailed changes I made to add Growl for Windows support to Autotest Growl.

These changes have now been integrated back into the autotest-growl gem. Along with some major improvements to the analysis of test results, and the details in the notifications. Thanks to Svoop, the creator of autotest-growl.

This gem isn’t yet available on Rubyforge, but you can grab a copy from my fork on GitHub until it is:

gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

This should be a drop in replacement for the previous version of karl-autotest-growl, the only thing you should notice more detail from the growl notifications!

I’ll post again once the official gem is available on Rubyforge.

Autotest Growl for Windows

July 10th, 2009

In a previous blog post I detailed how to get Autotest Growl notifications on Windows using Snarl. But, there now exists an official Growl client for Windows.

So how about we update autotest-growl to support Windows (on top of it’s existing support for OSX).

If you don’t want to know all the gory details, you can just install my fork of the autotest-growl gem, that includes native Growl Windows support:

gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

Obviously, you’ll need to have Growl for Windows installed as well!

Updating Autotest Growl to support Windows

First up download and install Growl for Windows (if you haven’t already).

Updating Autotest Growl turns out to be pretty simple. We need to download growlnotify for Windows, and add it to the growl/ directory.

Then we can update the autotest-growl code to decide which growlnotify to use depending on the Operating System.

  def self.is_windows?
    processor, platform, *rest = RUBY_PLATFORM.split("-")
    platform == 'mswin32'
  # Display a message through Growl.
  def self.growl title, message, icon, priority=0, stick=""
    growl = File.join(GEM_PATH, 'growl', 'growlnotify')
    image = File.join(ENV['HOME'], '.autotest-growl', "#{icon}.png")
    image = File.join(GEM_PATH, 'img', "#{icon}.png") unless File.exists?(image)
    if is_windows?
      growl += '.com'
      cmd = "#{growl} #{message.inspect} /a:\"autotest\" /r:\"Autotest\" /n:\"Autotest\" /i:\"#{image}\" /p:#{priority} /t:\"#{title}\""
      if @@remote_notification
        cmd = "#{growl} -H localhost -n autotest --image '#{image}' -p #{priority} -m #{message.inspect} '#{title}' #{stick}"
        cmd = "#{growl} -n autotest --image '#{image}' -p #{priority} -m #{message.inspect} '#{title}' #{stick}"
  system cmd

You’ll notice that the command line flags are slightly different for the Windows version of growlnotify, the using the /x: format, rather than the OSX -x format.

The Windows version also adds the flat /r:"Autotest" to ensure the Autotest application is registered the first time it is run.

There is no need to deal with the @@remote_notification settings, as Growl for Windows does not have the same problem with intermittent notification loss that OSX does.

Installing updated Autotest Growl gem

I have rolled all these changes into my fork of autotest-growl. To switch over to this fork, open a Windows command prompt and enter:

gem uninstall autotest-growl
gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

And then watch the notifications roll in!

Growl and Autotest work brilliantly together. Autotest runs all your tests in the background every time a file changes, giving you extremely fast feedback on your test driven development. And Growl notifications save you from needing to flip back to the Terminal to see the result of each test run, you get an unobtrusive popup in the corner of your screen showing the success or failure of the tests.

But what about those users working on the Windows platform?

Snarl is a windows counterpart to Growl. Providing much of the same functionality.

And there is a Snarl Ruby gem allowing us to create Snarl notifications from Ruby.

So lets convert our Growl calls to Snarl calls, and get Autotest notifications under Windows.

Installing Autotest, Snarl, and the Growl to Snarl converter

If you haven’t already download and install Ruby.

First up we need to download and install Snarl.

Then we need to install Autotest and the autotest-growl gem (that we are later going to override). Open a command prompt, and type the following (Autotest is part of the ZenTest gem):

gem install ZenTest
gem install ruby-snarl
gem install autotest-growl

Then save the code below to lib/autotest/growl-to-snarl.rb within your project. This code converts any Growl calls to equivalent Snarl calls.


require 'snarl'
module Autotest::Growl
  # Display a message through Snarl.
  def self.growl title, message, icon, priority=0, stick=""
    image = File.join(ENV['HOME'], '.autotest-growl', "#{icon}.png")
    image = File.join(GEM_PATH, 'img', "#{icon}.png") unless File.exists?(image)
	Snarl.show_message(title, message.inspect, image)

Next we need to update our .autotest configuration file to include the autotest-growl gem, and the Growl to Snarl converter. Add the following to your .autotest file in the project root directory.

require 'autotest-growl'
require 'snarl'
require 'lib/autotest/growl-to-snarl'

Running Autotest with Snarl support

First up ensure Snarl is running (check for the icon in the system tray).

Autotest will fail to run on Windows if a HOME environment variable doesn’t exist, so we need to create one before we run (I’ve also noticed that the Ruby gem command will fail to run if the HOME evironment variable does exist, which is frustrating!).

Open a command prompt, navigate to the project root directory. Then enter the following to set the HOME environment variable and run Autotest.

set HOME="C:\Documents and Settings\username"

The results of your test runs should now display as Snarl notifications.

Autotest and JS Test Driver

June 19th, 2009

Google recently released a new Javascript testing framework, JS Test Driver. It provides incredibly fast execution for Javascript unit tests, and can be run from the command line without the need for manual control of browsers. Check out this introduction to JS Test Driver by Miško Hevery.

Fast test execution and the ability to be run from the command line make it a perfect fit to integrate into the Autotest test cycle. So I have.

The module below hooks into Autotest just before the normal tests are run. It runs JS Test Driver over all the tests in the project, outputs the results, and finally fires off a :ran_js_test_driver hook.

Errors and failed tests will automatically be notified through Growl (if Growl and autotest-growl are installed). By default successful tests runs are not notified through Growl, in order to keep distracting popups to a minimum.

Installing Autotest JS Test Driver

First you need to download a copy of JS Test Driver.

Save the JS Test Driver jar file to the lib/ directory within your project.

Then copy the code below to lib/autotest/js-test-driver.rb


# Run JS Test Driver as part of autotest
# Supports Growl notifications if using autotest-growl
require 'autotest'
module Autotest::JsTestDriver
    @@jar = File.dirname(__FILE__) + '/JsTestDriver-1.0b.jar'
    @@config_file = 'jsTestDriver.conf'
    def self.jar=(string)
        @@jar = string
    def self.config_file=(string)
        @@config_file = string
    def self.show_success=(bool)
    Autotest.add_hook :run_command do |at|
        # run js test driver
        results = 'JS Test Driver:'
        results += `java -jar "#{@@jar}" --config "#{@@config_file}" --tests all --verbose`
        puts results
        at.results = [] if at.results.nil?
        at.hook :ran_js_test_driver
module Autotest::Growl
    @@show_js_test_success = false
    def self.show_js_test_success=(bool)
  # Growl results of JS Test Driver
  Autotest.add_hook :ran_js_test_driver do |autotest|
    gist = autotest.results.grep( /Total\s+\d+\s+tests/ ).join(" / ").strip()
    if gist == ''
      growl @label + 'Cannot run JS Test Driver.', gist, 'error'
      if gist =~ /Errors:\s+[1-9]\d*/
        growl @label + 'Error running some JS tests.', gist, 'failed'
      elsif gist =~ /Fails:\s+[1-9]\d*/
        growl @label + 'JS Test: Some tests failed.', gist, 'failed'
      elsif @@show_js_test_success
        growl @label + 'JS Test: All files are clean.', gist, 'passed'

Configuring Autotest and JS Test Driver

JS Test Driver uses a configuration file to connect with the JS Test Driver server, and to decide which javscript files to load.

Create a jsTestDriver.conf file in the project root directory as follows.

server: http://localhost:9876

  - src/js/*.js
  - tests/js/*.js

This assumes that you have our javascript source files will be in the src/js/ directory, and our javascript test files will be in the src/js/ directory. We will create a test file, and associated code later.

The server: lets JS Test Driver know we will be connecting to a server on our local machine, on port 9876. We’ll get this server running later.

Next we need to configure Autotest to run JS Test Driver, by requiring the module and specifying the location of the JS Test Driver jar.

# Require the JS Test Driver module
require 'lib/autotest/js-test-driver'
# Set the location of the JS Test Driver jar
Autotest::JsTestDriver::jar = './lib/jsTestDriver-1.0b.jar'

You can also configure the location of the JS Test Driver config file, and whether or not to show successful test runs.

# Uncomment this if you have autotest-growl, and Growl installed
# And want to have notifications of JS Test Driver runs
# require 'autotest/growl'
# Uncomment this to change the location of the JS Test Driver config file
# By default we look for a jsTestDriver.conf file in the directory autotest is run from 
# Autotest::JsTestDriver::config_file = './jsTestDriver.conf'
# Uncomment this to show successful test runs
# Autotest::Growl::show_js_test_success = true

Now that all the installation and configuration is done, let get everything running.

Running Autotest with JS Test Driver

First up we need to get our JS Test Driver server up and running. Open a Terminal, and navigate to the directory containing the JS Test Driver jar. Run the following to start a server:

java -jar JsTestDriver-1.0b.jar --port 9876

Now we need to capture a browser to use for testing. Open a browser and automatically capture it for use with JS Test Driver by going to the following URL:


Now we can run autotest, and watch as it runs JS Test Driver and reports the results to us on every file change:


JS Test Driver will probably report that no tests were run, as we haven’t written any tests yet. Tests are written using the TestCase object, which exposes JUnit style functionality.

Writing Some Tests

Here is an example test file, and the production code it tests:


GreeterTest = TestCase("GreeterTest");
GreeterTest.prototype.testGreet = function() {
  var greeter = new myapp.Greeter();
  assertEquals("Hello World.", greeter.greet("World"));


myapp = {};
myapp.Greeter = function() { };
myapp.Greeter.prototype.greet = function(name) {
  return "Hello " + name + "!";

If you copy these to your tests/js/ and src/js/ directories respectively, Autotest should pick up the new files, run the tests and notify you that there is an error. See if you can spot it :P

To Do

This would be nice packaged up as a gem. It would also be nice if failed Javascript tests could stop further tests being run.

As an example of getting Autotest, Cucumber, and Growl up and running I’ve created a super simple test project. You can download the example project, or just create it from the code on this post.

Install Ruby, Growl, and Gems

First up we need to ensure that we have all our dependancies installed.

If you haven’t already, download and install Ruby.

Then we need to install the Autotest, Cucumber, and Growl Ruby gems. We can do this using the gem command that comes packaged with Ruby.

# Autotest test is part of the ZenTest gem
sudo gem install ZenTest
sudo gem install cucumber
# Use my modified autotest-growl gem (until the changes are merged into the official gem)
sudo gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

Next we need to ensure that the Growl application itself is installed. If not download and install Growl.

Create Project

Now we are ready to create our project. The either download the example project or create the file heirarchy below:

  • [dir] Autotest-Cucumber

    • [file] .autotest
    • [dir] features
      • [file] test.feature

Copy the code below into the .autotest file:


require 'autotest/growl'

And the copy the following into the test.feature file:


        Given I save 1
        Then I have 1

Set Environment

Lastly we need to set the AUTOFEATURE environment variable to true, so that autotest will run the Cucumber tests automatically:


Run Autotest!

Finally we can run autotest, and watch as it picks up the Cucumber tests, runs them, and notifies us via Growl. Open terminal and navigate to the project directory. Then run autotest:


Autotest will initiate a Cucumber run. Cucumber will pick up the test.feature file (because it looks for a features folder by default). The Cucumber run will show that you have 1 undefined scenario (and be kind enough to give you the code for your undefined steps). And finally Growl will display a notification that you have 1 undefined scenario, yay!

c:/ruby/bin/ruby c:/ruby/lib/ruby/gems/1.8/gems/aslakhellesoy-cucumber- --format progress --format rerun --out C:/Temp/autotest-cucumber.17824.1 features
1 scenario (1 undefined)
2 steps (2 undefined)
You can implement step definitions for undefined steps with these snippets:
Given /^I save 1$/ do
Then /^I have 1$/ do

Following on to my previous post on Autotest, Cucumber, and Growl, I have forked the autotest-growl repository, and applied my fix for Cucumber notifications.

You find my patched version of autotest-growl on GitHub.

You can switch to this version of autotest-growl by uninstalling any existing version, and then installing from my fork on GitHub:

sudo gem uninstall autotest-growl
sudo gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

As well as using Autotest to run Cucumber scenarios I have also been looking into integrating lower level test into the Autotest cycle.

My first attempt at this is a small module to run Javascript Lint on all the javascript files within a project any time any file changes.

The module below hooks in to Autotest just before the tests are normally run. It runs javascript lint over all the *.js files in the project, outputs the results to the autotest results object and the standard output, and finally fires a new ran_javascript_lint hook

Errors and warnings found by Javascript Lint will also be notified through Growl (if Growl and autotest-growl are installed). If there are no errors or warnings than no Growl notification is shown. This keeps distracting popups to a minimum.

Installing Autotest Javascript Lint

First up, download Javascript Lint. Extract the jsl executable to lib/autotest/ within your project.

Copy the code below to lib/autotest/javascript-lint.rb within your project (the same directory where you have the jsl execuatable).


# Run Javascript Lint as part of autotest
# Supports Growl notifications if using autotest-growl
# Version 1.0
require 'autotest'
module Autotest::JavascriptLint
    @@js_dir = ''
    @@jsl_dir = File.dirname(__FILE__) + '/'
    @@config_file = ''
    def self.js_dir=(string)
        @@js_dir = string
    def self.jsl_dir=(string)
        @@jsl_dir = string
    def self.config_file=(string)
        @@config_file = string
    Autotest.add_hook :run_command do |at|
        # run javascript lint
        results = `#{@@jsl_dir}jsl -conf "#{@@config_file}"  -process "#{@@js_dir}*.js" +recurse`
        puts results
        at.results = [] if at.results.nil?
        at.hook :ran_javascript_lint
module Autotest::Growl
    @@show_js_lint_success = false
    def self.show_js_lint_success=(bool)
    # Growl results of Javscript Lint
    Autotest.add_hook :ran_javascript_lint do |autotest|
        gist = autotest.results.grep(/\d+\s+error.*,\s+\d+\s+warning.*/).join(" / ").strip()
        if gist == ''
            growl @label + 'Cannot run javascript lint.', '', 'error'
            if gist =~ /[1-9]\d*\s+(error)/
                growl @label + 'Lint: Some files have errors.', gist, 'failed'
            elsif gist =~ /[1-9]\d*\s+(warning)/
                growl @label + 'Lint: Some files have warnings.', gist, 'pending'
            elsif @@show_js_lint_success
                growl @label + 'Lint: All files are clean.', gist, 'passed'

Then add Autotest Javascript Lint to your .autotest configuration file within the base of your project.

require 'lib/autotest/javascript-lint'

To Do

This could be packaged as a gem for easy installation, and it could possibly be modified to only run over changed files.

Autotest is a great Ruby tool to speed up test driven development by automatically running your tests every time a file is saved.

Cucumber is an awesome tool for doing behavioural driven development. It allows you to write plain text automated acceptance tests.

Autotest and Cucumber work together seamlessly, you just need to set the AUTOFEATURE environment variable to true:


Growl is an excellent notification system for OSX that allows applications to popup unobtrusive messages on the users desktop. (Snarl is the equivalent for windows)

You can add Growl support to Autotest (using the autotest-growl gem) so that you get popup notifications of test results.

But the current version of autotest-growl doesn’t provide notifications for the result of Autotest Cucumber runs.

Cucumber Growl support in Autotest

So I’ve added support for notification of Autotest Cucumber results using growl. It’s super simple at the moment as I’m still pretty new at Ruby.

You need to have Autotest (part of the ZenTest gem), Autotest-Growl, and Growl already installed.

Save the code below to the file growl-cucumber.rb.


require 'autotest'
module Autotest::Growl
  # Growl results of Cucumber
  Autotest.add_hook :ran_features do |autotest|
	gist = autotest.results.grep(/\d+\s+scenario.*\)/).join(" / ").strip()
	if gist == ''
	  growl @label + 'Cannot run features.', '', 'error'
	  if gist =~ /[1-9]\d*\s+(failed)/
	    growl @label + 'Some features have failed.', gist, 'failed'
	  elsif gist =~ /pending/
	    growl @label + 'Some features are skipped.', gist, 'skipped'
	    growl @label + 'All features have passed.', gist, 'passed'

Then update your .autotest configuration file to include the new growl-cucumber file:


# Add the growl and growl-cucumber requires to your .autotest config file 
require 'autotest/growl'
require 'autotest/growl-cucumber'

To Do

I need to see if this can be integrated with the existing autotest-growl gem.