Scripted testing of a Clearwater deployment
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Clearwater Live Test Framework

This framework allows scripted testing of a Clearwater deployment to be used as a system-wide test of a fix/feature.

Project Clearwater is an open-source IMS core, developed by Metaswitch Networks and released under the GNU GPLv3. You can find more information about it on our website or our wiki.

Usage Options

The clearwater-live-test framework can be run in two modes:

  • as a scriptable manual regression suite, useful for checking that a deployment is working correctly and used by the Project Clearwater team to validate that newly added function works end-to-end
  • as a continuous verification VNF which can be installed alongside a Clearwater deployment to provide continuous, service-level verification of the deployment's basic functionality

We recommend using the manual testing regression suite when creating a new deployment to confirm that the deployment is correctly installed and configured. It may also be useful on an ongoing basis to help with early detection of any service issues that arise.

Framework Structure

Tests in the framework are essentially short Ruby programs. These programs use the Quaff library to talk over SIP to Clearwater nodes for calls, and the rest-client library to communicate with Ellis for provisioning.

Any Quaff error logs are saved off in the event of a failure and are very useful for tracking down issues/bugs in the scripts.

The test framework is very punctilious about cleaning up after itself, so there should be no issue with running the tests in any order or running the framework multiple times on one deployment (even at the same time!).


The test framework requires Ruby 1.9.3 and bundler to be installed.

sudo apt-get install build-essential bundler git --yes
curl -L | bash -s stable

This step may fail due to missing GPG signatures. If this happens it will suggest a command to run to resolve the problem (e.g. gpg --keyserver hkp:// --recv-keys 409B6B1796C275462A1703113804BB82D39DC0E3). Run the command suggested, then run the above command again, which should now succeed).

Next install the required ruby version.

source ~/.rvm/scripts/rvm
rvm autolibs enable
rvm install 1.9.3
rvm use 1.9.3

At this point, ruby --version should indicate that 1.9.3 is in use.

To prepare a machine to run the tests manually, clone the repository:

git clone --recursive

Then type bundle install inside the newly-created clearwater-live-test folder to install the required gems.

Running the Tests Manually

To run the tests against a deployment, use:

rake test[<deployment_name>] SIGNUP_CODE=<code>

where <code> is the signup code you supplied when configuring Ellis (see /etc/clearwater/config on the Ellis server).

There are various modifiers you can use to determine which subset of tests you wish to run, to use these modifiers, add them to the end of the rake command:

  • ELLIS_API_KEY=<key> - this should match the ellis_api_key configuration on Ellis and allows the test scripts to provision specific SIP URIs on the system instead of having them randomly assigned by Ellis.
  • TESTS="<glob>" - to only run tests whose name matches the given glob.
  • PSTN=true - to run the PSTN-specific tests (your deployment must have PSTN numbers allocated).
  • LIVENUMBER=<number> - to allow running of tests that dial out to real devices (your deployment must have an IBCF node and a working PSTN) the live number given may be dialled as part of running the test and the test will expect it to be answered (so make it a real one!).
  • REPEAT=<number> - to allow the suite of tests to be run multiple times.
  • TRANSPORT=<transports> - Comma-separated transports to test with. Allowed tranports are TCP and UDP. If not specified, the tests will be run using TCP only.
  • PROXY=<host> - to force the tests to run against a particular Bono instance. Useful when running against an AIO node, or when the Bono domain isn't DNS resolvable.
  • ELLIS=<host> - to override the default FQDN for Ellis. Useful when running against an AIO node, or when the Ellis domain isn't DNS resolvable.
  • HOST_NAME=<host> - publicly accessible hostname of the machine running the tests, used for the dummy AS.
  • EXPIRES=<number> - maximum Expires header expected from Sprout, used for the dummy AS.
  • GEMINI=<host> - hostname of the the Gemini cluster. If the Gemini application server is integrated with Sprout rather than running as a standalone, this should be set to the Sprout cluster.
  • MEMENTO_SIP=<host> - hostname of the Memento (SIP) cluster. If the Memento application server is integrated with Sprout rather than running as a standalone, this should be set to the Sprout cluster.
  • MEMENTO_HTTP=<host> - hostname of the Memento (HTTP) cluster.
  • PROVISIONAL_RESPONSES_IGNORED=TRUE - set this to interoperate with devices that absorb second and subsequent provisional responses (so that if a call is forked and both endpoints send a 180 Ringing, only one will reach the caller)
  • EXCLUDE_TESTS="test1 (TCP),test2 (UDP)" - a comma-separated list of prefix matches for tests to ignore. Useful for working around known bugs with tests in particular environments (e.g. skipping the B2BUA test in cases where the EC2 security group settings won't allow it).
  • ELLIS_USER=<email> - to override the default email used for Ellis ( Useful to allow multiple live test instances to run simultaneously without deleting each other's lines.
  • BONO_SNMP=Y - to verify the consistency of Bono SNMP statistics produced in the test run.
  • OFF_NET_TEL=<number> - an off-net number that should be routed back to this machine, for testing BGCF functionality. See the BGCF Testing doc for more detail.
  • NONCE_COUNT=Y - to enable nonce-count tests - only possible if nonce_count_supported=Y is set on the Clearwater deployment under test.
  • IBCF=<hostname> - hostname of an IBCF in your deployment. The IBCF must be set up to treat the machine running these tests as a trusted peer.
  • ICSCF_HOSTNAME=<hostname> - hostname of an I-CSCF in your deployment.
  • EMERGENCY_REG=Y - include tests that use emergency registrations. These will only work against Bono if Bono is run with the --allow-emergency-registration option enabled (which should not be enabled for live deployments as it represents a security risk)
  • SHORT_REG=Y - include tests that use short registrations (typically 3s). These tests will fail if your P-CSCF imposes a longer minimum registration interval.
  • PCSCF=<PROXY or B2BUA> - whether the P-CSCF acts as a Proxy or a B2BUA. This affects the number of 180 Ringing responses seen in the Call Forking tests. Defaults to PROXY, as that's how Bono behaves.

For example, to run all the call barring tests (including the international number barring tests) on the test deployment, run:

rake test[] TESTS="Call Barring*" PSTN=true

Building the Continuous Verification Package

The continuous verification tool is packaged as a Debian package (built from the same codebase as the manual test suite) ready to be installed alongside your live deployment.

make deb

Which will build a *.deb package in the current folder. See build-infra/ for more options to this script (e.g. automatically publish the package to a repository server).

Using the Continuous Verification Tool

The continuous verification tool uses the same configuration file as the other Clearwater nodes, /etc/clearwater/config. To install the verification VNF, prepare an Ubuntu 14.04 machine as if to install a Clearwater node in the deployment but, at the point you would install sprout/homer/etc. instead install the clearwater-live-verification package, either from the public Project Clearwater repository server or from a private build as shown above. This will install and start the verification service. Note that the installation process requires Internet access.

The verification service produces SNMP alarms to indicate the status of the deployment. See our public docs for how to configure Clearwater to report these alarms.

The verification service runs a very cut-down collection of tests, focussing on basic functionality tests. This means that, if the verification service reports that the deployment is OK, then subscribers are capable of registering and making calls.

Running in a docker container

The test code and dependencies can be built into a docker image using the provided Dockerfile. Simply run docker build -t clearwater/live-test . from within the clearwater-live-test/ directory. This image can then be used to run the live tests, by running the above test command in the container. e.g. docker run -it clearwater/live-test rake test[<deployment_name>] SIGNUP_CODE=<code>

Writing A New Test

The test definitions are found in lib/tests/*.rb and should be pretty self-explanatory. A basic test structure is as follows:"Basic Call - Messages - Pager model") do |t|
  caller = t.add_endpoint
  callee = t.add_endpoint

  t.add_quaff_setup do

  t.add_quaff_scenario do
    call = caller.outgoing_call(callee.uri)

    call.send_request("MESSAGE", "hello world\r\n", {"Content-Type" => "text/plain"})

  t.add_quaff_scenario do
    call2 = callee.incoming_call
    call2.send_response("200", "OK")

  t.add_quaff_cleanup do

This example would create two numbers in ellis/homestead, register them, then send a MESSAGE transaction between them before deregistering and destroying the numbers. Because the deregistration takes place in a cleanup block, this happens even if the main scenario fails or hits an exception.

There are different skip functions that can be included in a test. These control whether a test case is run, based on the command line options given at run time:

  • skip_unless_pstn: PSTN test, requires that PSTN=true be passed to rake or the test will be skipped.
  • skip_unless_live: Live call test, requires that a live number is given to rake as LIVENUMBER=....
  • skip_unless_<application server>: Application Server test, requires that a hostname for the particular server is passed to rake as (for example) GEMINI=....
  • skip_if_udp: Used to mark a test that's only valid when using TCP
  • skip_unless_ellis_api_key: Test that requires the Ellis API key, for example a test that creates specific endpoints
  • skip_unless_offnet_tel: Test that requires an off-net number (specified by OFF_NET_TEL) to be routed back to this machine.
  • skip: Used to mark out currently broken tests, tests should not be left in this state for longer than necessary.

Creating Endpoints

As you saw above, a test can create an endpoint in ellis with test.add_endpoint. It may need an endpoint that is not a Clearwater number (for example for off-net calling), in which case add_fake_endpoint(<DN>, <domain>) may be used instead.

To create a PSTN number use test.add_pstn_endpoint. These numbers can make calls out to the PSTN and should be used for live calling/international number dialing tests. When using these numbers, include in the test skip_unless_pstn to ensure it is skipped if PSTN numbers are not available on the system under test.

By default, test.add_endpoint has a random SIP URI assigned from Ellis' pool of numbers. test.add_specific_endpoint "2345" will assign the specific number sip:2345@DOMAIN. This should only be used when absolutely necessary for a specific test - it requires the Ellis API key to be provided in order to have sufficient privileges to create arbitrary numbers.

To create a new public identity for a line, use the test.add_quaff_public_identity function. The returned endpoint will share a private ID with the passed in one but will have its own public identity.

When using Clearwater endpoints, a common thing to need to do is to (un)register the endpoint and so ep.register and ep.unregister have been supplied that return the scenario entries needed to do this (see Basic Call - Mainline for an example of how this is used).

Modifying Simservs

To change a simservs document for a Clearwater endpoint, use ep.set_simservs which takes a hash of options for the document. See templates/simservs.xml.erb for how the options are used and see EllisEndpoint::default_simservs for the options that will be used if not specified in your call to set_simservs.

Modifying iFCs

To change the iFC document for a Clearwater endpoint, use ep.set_ifcs which takes a hash of options for the document. See templates/ifcs.xml.erb for how the options are used and see EllisEndpoint::default_ifcs for the options that will be used if not specified in your call to set_ifcs.

Sending Messages

To send a SIP message, use the ep.send_request(<method>) or ep.send_response(<status code>, <reason phrase>) commands. These are commands from the Quaff Ruby library for SIP, documented at

Receiving Messages

To receive a SIP message, simple add ep.recv_response(<status code>) or ep.recv_request(<method>) to the scenario.


Pauses are expressed using standard Ruby syntax - sleep 5. In general, the live tests are simply blocks of Ruby code using a SIP library, so anything that is possible in Ruby is possible within a testcase.


The Clearwater Live Test Framework depends on the following files from the sipp project. These are distributed under the GPL.

  • g711a.cap - pcap file for test announcement
  • sipp - precompiled binary from git commit 3268f48, with RTP/pcap relay enabled