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README.md

Module kotlinx-coroutines-test

Test utilities for kotlinx.coroutines.

This package provides testing utilities for effectively testing coroutines.

Using in your project

Add kotlinx-coroutines-test to your project test dependencies:

dependencies {
    testImplementation 'org.jetbrains.kotlinx:kotlinx-coroutines-test:1.3.3'
}

Do not depend on this project in your main sources, all utilities are intended and designed to be used only from tests.

Dispatchers.Main Delegation

Dispatchers.setMain will override the Main dispatcher in test situations. This is helpful when you want to execute a test in situations where the platform Main dispatcher is not available, or you wish to replace Dispatchers.Main with a testing dispatcher.

Once you have this dependency in the runtime, ServiceLoader mechanism will overwrite Dispatchers.Main with a testable implementation.

You can override the Main implementation using setMain method with any CoroutineDispatcher implementation, e.g.:

class SomeTest {
    
    private val mainThreadSurrogate = newSingleThreadContext("UI thread")

    @Before
    fun setUp() {
        Dispatchers.setMain(mainThreadSurrogate)
    }

    @After
    fun tearDown() {
        Dispatchers.resetMain() // reset main dispatcher to the original Main dispatcher
        mainThreadSurrogate.close()
    }
    
    @Test
    fun testSomeUI() = runBlocking {
        launch(Dispatchers.Main) {  // Will be launched in the mainThreadSurrogate dispatcher
            // ...
        }
    }
}

Calling setMain or resetMain immediately changes the Main dispatcher globally. The testable version of Dispatchers.Main installed by the ServiceLoader will delegate to the dispatcher provided by setMain.

runBlockingTest

To test regular suspend functions or coroutines started with launch or async use the runBlockingTest coroutine builder that provides extra test control to coroutines.

  1. Auto-advancing of time for regular suspend functions
  2. Explicit time control for testing multiple coroutines
  3. Eager execution of launch or async code blocks
  4. Pause, manually advance, and restart the execution of coroutines in a test
  5. Report uncaught exceptions as test failures

Testing regular suspend functions

To test regular suspend functions, which may have a delay, you can use the runBlockingTest builder to start a testing coroutine. Any calls to delay will automatically advance virtual time by the amount delayed.

@Test
fun testFoo() = runBlockingTest { // a coroutine with an extra test control
    val actual = foo() 
    // ...
}

suspend fun foo() {
    delay(1_000) // auto-advances virtual time by 1_000ms due to runBlockingTest
    // ...
}

runBlockingTest returns Unit so it may be used in a single expression with common testing libraries.

Testing launch or async

Inside of runBlockingTest, both launch and async will start a new coroutine that may run concurrently with the test case.

To make common testing situations easier, by default the body of the coroutine is executed eagerly until the first call to delay or yield.

@Test
fun testFooWithLaunch() = runBlockingTest {
    foo()
    // the coroutine launched by foo() is completed before foo() returns
    // ...
}

fun CoroutineScope.foo() {
     // This coroutines `Job` is not shared with the test code
     launch {
         bar()      // executes eagerly when foo() is called due to runBlockingTest
         println(1) // executes eagerly when foo() is called due to runBlockingTest
     }
}

suspend fun bar() {}

runBlockingTest will auto-progress virtual time until all coroutines are completed before returning. If any coroutines are not able to complete, an UncompletedCoroutinesError will be thrown.

Note: The default eager behavior of runBlockingTest will ignore CoroutineStart parameters.

Testing launch or async with delay

If the coroutine created by launch or async calls delay then the runBlockingTest will not auto-progress time right away. This allows tests to observe the interaction of multiple coroutines with different delays.

To control time in the test you can use the DelayController interface. The block passed to runBlockingTest can call any method on the DelayController interface.

@Test
fun testFooWithLaunchAndDelay() = runBlockingTest {
    foo()
    // the coroutine launched by foo has not completed here, it is suspended waiting for delay(1_000)
    advanceTimeBy(1_000) // progress time, this will cause the delay to resume
    // the coroutine launched by foo has completed here
    // ...
}

suspend fun CoroutineScope.foo() {
    launch {
        println(1)   // executes eagerly when foo() is called due to runBlockingTest
        delay(1_000) // suspends until time is advanced by at least 1_000
        println(2)   // executes after advanceTimeBy(1_000)
    }
}

Note: runBlockingTest will always attempt to auto-progress time until all coroutines are completed just before exiting. This is a convenience to avoid having to call advanceUntilIdle as the last line of many common test cases. If any coroutines cannot complete by advancing time, an UncompletedCoroutinesError is thrown.

Testing withTimeout using runBlockingTest

Time control can be used to test timeout code. To do so, ensure that the function under test is suspended inside a withTimeout block and advance time until the timeout is triggered.

Depending on the code, causing the code to suspend may need to use different mocking or fake techniques. For this example an uncompleted Deferred<Foo> is provided to the function under test via parameter injection.

@Test(expected = TimeoutCancellationException::class)
fun testFooWithTimeout() = runBlockingTest {
    val uncompleted = CompletableDeferred<Foo>() // this Deferred<Foo> will never complete
    foo(uncompleted)
    advanceTimeBy(1_000) // advance time, which will cause the timeout to throw an exception
    // ...
}

fun CoroutineScope.foo(resultDeferred: Deferred<Foo>) {
    launch {
        withTimeout(1_000) {
            resultDeferred.await() // await() will suspend forever waiting for uncompleted
            // ...
        }
    }
}

Note: Testing timeouts is simpler with a second coroutine that can be suspended (as in this example). If the call to withTimeout is in a regular suspend function, consider calling launch or async inside your test body to create a second coroutine.

Using pauseDispatcher for explicit execution of runBlockingTest

The eager execution of launch and async bodies makes many tests easier, but some tests need more fine grained control of coroutine execution.

To disable eager execution, you can call pauseDispatcher to pause the TestCoroutineDispatcher that runBlockingTest uses.

When the dispatcher is paused, all coroutines will be added to a queue instead running. In addition, time will never auto-progress due to delay on a paused dispatcher.

@Test
fun testFooWithPauseDispatcher() = runBlockingTest {
    pauseDispatcher {
        foo()
        // the coroutine started by foo has not run yet
        runCurrent() // the coroutine started by foo advances to delay(1_000)
        // the coroutine started by foo has called println(1), and is suspended on delay(1_000)
        advanceTimeBy(1_000) // progress time, this will cause the delay to resume
        // the coroutine started by foo has called println(2) and has completed here
    }
    // ...
}

fun CoroutineScope.foo() {
    launch {
        println(1)   // executes after runCurrent() is called
        delay(1_000) // suspends until time is advanced by at least 1_000
        println(2)   // executes after advanceTimeBy(1_000)
    }
}

Using pauseDispatcher gives tests explicit control over the progress of time as well as the ability to enqueue all coroutines. As a best practice consider adding two tests, one paused and one eager, to test coroutines that have non-trivial external dependencies and side effects in their launch body.

Important: When passed a lambda block, pauseDispatcher will resume eager execution immediately after the block. This will cause time to auto-progress if there are any outstanding delay calls that were not resolved before the pauseDispatcher block returned. In advanced situations tests can call pauseDispatcher without a lambda block and then explicitly resume the dispatcher with resumeDispatcher.

Integrating tests with structured concurrency

Code that uses structured concurrency needs a CoroutineScope in order to launch a coroutine. In order to integrate runBlockingTest with code that uses common structured concurrency patterns tests can provide one (or both) of these classes to application code.

Name Description
TestCoroutineScope A CoroutineScope which provides detailed control over the execution of coroutines for tests and integrates with runBlockingTest.
TestCoroutineDispatcher A CoroutineDispatcher which can be used for tests and integrates with runBlockingTest.

Both classes are provided to allow for various testing needs. Depending on the code that's being tested, it may be easier to provide a TestCoroutineDispatcher. For example Dispatchers.setMain will accept a TestCoroutineDispatcher but not a TestCoroutineScope.

TestCoroutineScope will always use a TestCoroutineDispatcher to execute coroutines. It also uses TestCoroutineExceptionHandler to convert uncaught exceptions into test failures.

By providing TestCoroutineScope a test case is able to control execution of coroutines, as well as ensure that uncaught exceptions thrown by coroutines are converted into test failures.

Providing TestCoroutineScope from runBlockingTest

In simple cases, tests can use the TestCoroutineScope created by runBlockingTest directly.

@Test
fun testFoo() = runBlockingTest {        
    foo() // runBlockingTest passed in a TestCoroutineScope as this
}

fun CoroutineScope.foo() {
    launch {  // CoroutineScope for launch is the TestCoroutineScope provided by runBlockingTest
        // ...
    }
}

This style is preferred when the CoroutineScope is passed through an extension function style.

Providing an explicit TestCoroutineScope

In many cases, the direct style is not preferred because CoroutineScope may need to be provided through another means such as dependency injection or service locators.

Tests can declare a TestCoroutineScope explicitly in the class to support these use cases.

Since TestCoroutineScope is stateful in order to keep track of executing coroutines and uncaught exceptions, it is important to ensure that cleanupTestCoroutines is called after every test case.

class TestClass {
    private val testScope = TestCoroutineScope()
    private lateinit var subject: Subject = null 
    
    @Before
    fun setup() {
        // provide the scope explicitly, in this example using a constructor parameter
        subject = Subject(testScope)
    }
    
    @After
    fun cleanUp() {
        testScope.cleanupTestCoroutines()
    }
    
    @Test
    fun testFoo() = testScope.runBlockingTest {
        // TestCoroutineScope.runBlockingTest uses the Dispatcher and exception handler provided by `testScope`
        subject.foo()
    }
}

class Subject(val scope: CoroutineScope) {
    fun foo() {
        scope.launch {
            // launch uses the testScope injected in setup
        }
    }
}

Note: TestCoroutineScope, TestCoroutineDispatcher, and TestCoroutineExceptionHandler are interfaces to enable test libraries to provide library specific integrations. For example, a JUnit4 @Rule may call Dispatchers.setMain then expose TestCoroutineScope for use in tests.

Providing an explicit TestCoroutineDispatcher

While providing a TestCoroutineScope is slightly preferred due to the improved uncaught exception handling, there are many situations where it is easier to provide a TestCoroutineDispatcher. For example Dispatchers.setMain does not accept a TestCoroutineScope and requires a TestCoroutineDispatcher to control coroutine execution in tests.

The main difference between TestCoroutineScope and TestCoroutineDispatcher is how uncaught exceptions are handled. When using TestCoroutineDispatcher uncaught exceptions thrown in coroutines will use regular coroutine exception handling. TestCoroutineScope will always use TestCoroutineDispatcher as it's dispatcher.

A test can use a TestCoroutineDispatcher without declaring an explicit TestCoroutineScope. This is preferred when the class under test allows a test to provide a CoroutineDispatcher but does not allow the test to provide a CoroutineScope.

Since TestCoroutineDispatcher is stateful in order to keep track of executing coroutines, it is important to ensure that cleanupTestCoroutines is called after every test case.

class TestClass {
    private val testDispatcher = TestCoroutineDispatcher()
        
    @Before
    fun setup() {
        // provide the scope explicitly, in this example using a constructor parameter
        Dispatchers.setMain(testDispatcher)
    }
    
    @After
    fun cleanUp() {
        Dispatchers.resetMain()
        testDispatcher.cleanupTestCoroutines()
    }
    
    @Test
    fun testFoo() = testDispatcher.runBlockingTest {
        // TestCoroutineDispatcher.runBlockingTest uses `testDispatcher` to run coroutines 
        foo()
    }
}

fun foo() {
    MainScope().launch { 
        // launch will use the testDispatcher provided by setMain
    }
}

Note: Prefer to provide TestCoroutineScope when it does not complicate code since it will also elevate exceptions to test failures. However, exposing a CoroutineScope to callers of a function may lead to complicated code, in which case this is the preferred pattern.

Using TestCoroutineScope and TestCoroutineDispatcher without runBlockingTest

It is supported to use both TestCoroutineScope and TestCoroutineDispatcher without using the runBlockingTest builder. Tests may need to do this in situations such as introducing multiple dispatchers and library writers may do this to provide alternatives to runBlockingTest.

@Test
fun testFooWithAutoProgress() {
    val scope = TestCoroutineScope()
    scope.foo()
    // foo is suspended waiting for time to progress
    scope.advanceUntilIdle()
    // foo's coroutine will be completed before here
}

fun CoroutineScope.foo() {
    launch {
        println(1)            // executes eagerly when foo() is called due to TestCoroutineScope
        delay(1_000)          // suspends until time is advanced by at least 1_000
        println(2)            // executes after advanceTimeUntilIdle
    }
} 

Using time control with withContext

Calls to withContext(Dispatchers.IO) or withContext(Dispatchers.Default) are common in coroutines based codebases. Both dispatchers are not designed to interact with TestCoroutineDispatcher.

Tests should provide a TestCoroutineDispatcher to replace these dispatchers if the withContext calls delay in the function under test. For example, a test that calls veryExpensiveOne should provide a TestCoroutineDispatcher using either dependency injection, a service locator, or a default parameter.

suspend fun veryExpensiveOne() = withContext(Dispatchers.Default) {
    delay(1_000)
    1 // for very expensive values of 1
}

In situations where the code inside the withContext is very simple, it is not as important to provide a test dispatcher. The function veryExpensiveTwo will behave identically in a TestCoroutineDispatcher and Dispatchers.Default after the thread switch for Dispatchers.Default. Because withContext always returns a value by directly, there is no need to inject a TestCoroutineDispatcher into this function.

suspend fun veryExpensiveTwo() = withContext(Dispatchers.Default) {
    2 // for very expensive values of 2
}

Tests should provide a TestCoroutineDispatcher to code that calls withContext to provide time control for delays, or when execution control is needed to test complex logic.

Status of the API

This API is experimental and it is may change before migrating out of experimental (while it is marked as @ExperimentalCoroutinesApi). Changes during experimental may have deprecation applied when possible, but it is not advised to use the API in stable code before it leaves experimental due to possible breaking changes.

If you have any suggestions for improvements to this experimental API please share them them on the issue tracker.

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