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Verify

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Verify is a snapshot tool that simplifies the assertion of complex data models and documents.

Verify is called on the test result during the assertion phase. It serializes that result and stores it in a file that matches the test name. On the next test execution, the result is again serialized and compared to the existing file. The test will fail if the two snapshots do not match: either the change is unexpected, or the reference snapshot needs to be updated to the new result.

NuGet packages

Snapshot management

Accepting or declining a snapshot file is part of the core workflow of Verify. There are several ways to do this and the approach(s) selected is a personal preference.

Usage

ImplicitUsings

All examples use ImplicitUsings. Ensure the following is set to have examples compile correctly <ImplicitUsings>enable</ImplicitUsings>

If ImplicitUsings are not enabled, substitute usages of Verify() with Verifier.Verify().

Class being tested

Given a class to be tested:

public static class ClassBeingTested
{
    public static Person FindPerson() =>
        new()
        {
            Id = new("ebced679-45d3-4653-8791-3d969c4a986c"),
            Title = Title.Mr,
            GivenNames = "John",
            FamilyName = "Smith",
            Spouse = "Jill",
            Children = new()
            {
                "Sam",
                "Mary"
            },
            Address = new()
            {
                Street = "4 Puddle Lane",
                Country = "USA"
            }
        };
}

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xUnit

Support for xUnit

[UsesVerify]
public class Sample
{
    [Fact]
    public Task Test()
    {
        var person = ClassBeingTested.FindPerson();
        return Verify(person);
    }
}

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NUnit

Support for NUnit

[TestFixture]
public class Sample
{
    [Test]
    public Task Test()
    {
        var person = ClassBeingTested.FindPerson();
        return Verify(person);
    }
}

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Expecto

Support for Expecto

open Expecto
open VerifyTests
open VerifyExpecto

[<Tests>]
let tests =
    testTask "findPerson" {
        let person = ClassBeingTested.FindPerson()
        do! Verifier.Verify("findPerson", person)
    }

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Caveats

Due to the nature of the Expecto implementation, the following APIs in Verify are not supported.

  • settings.UseParameters()
  • settings.UseTextForParameters()

MSTest

Support for MSTest

[TestClass]
public class Sample :
    VerifyBase
{
    [TestMethod]
    public Task Test()
    {
        var person = ClassBeingTested.FindPerson();
        return Verify(person);
    }
}

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Initial Verification

No existing .verified. file.

graph LR
run(Run test and&lt;br/&gt;create Received file)
failTest(Fail Test&lt;br/&gt;and show Diff)
closeDiff(Close Diff)
run--&gt;failTest
shouldAccept{Accept ?}
failTest--&gt;shouldAccept
accept(Move Received&lt;br/&gt;to Verified)
shouldAccept-- Yes --&gt;accept
discard(Discard&lt;br/&gt;Received)
shouldAccept-- No --&gt;discard
accept--&gt;closeDiff
discard--&gt;closeDiff

When the test is initially run will fail. If a Diff Tool is detected it will display the diff.

InitialDiff

To verify the result:

Verified result

This will result in the Sample.Test.verified.txt being created:

{
  GivenNames: John,
  FamilyName: Smith,
  Spouse: Jill,
  Address: {
    Street: 4 Puddle Lane,
    Country: USA
  },
  Children: [
    Sam,
    Mary
  ],
  Id: Guid_1
}

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Subsequent Verification

Existing .verified. file.

graph LR
run(Run test and&lt;br/&gt;create Received file)
closeDiff(Close Diff)
failTest(Fail Test&lt;br/&gt;and show Diff)
run--&gt;isSame
shouldAccept{Accept ?}
failTest--&gt;shouldAccept
accept(Move Received&lt;br/&gt;to Verified)
shouldAccept-- Yes --&gt;accept
discard(Discard&lt;br/&gt;Received)
shouldAccept-- No --&gt;discard

isSame{Compare&lt;br/&gt;Verified +&lt;br/&gt;Received}
passTest(Pass Test and&lt;br/&gt;discard Received)
isSame-- Same --&gt; passTest
isSame-- Different --&gt; failTest
accept--&gt;closeDiff
discard--&gt;closeDiff

If the implementation of ClassBeingTested changes:

public static class ClassBeingTested
{
    public static Person FindPerson() =>
        new()
        {
            Id = new("ebced679-45d3-4653-8791-3d969c4a986c"),
            Title = Title.Mr,
            // Middle name added
            GivenNames = "John James",
            FamilyName = "Smith",
            Spouse = "Jill",
            Children = new()
            {
                "Sam",
                "Mary"
            },
            Address = new()
            {
                // Address changed
                Street = "64 Barnett Street",
                Country = "USA"
            }
        };
}

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And the test is re run it will fail.

The Diff Tool will display the diff:

SecondDiff

The same approach can be used to verify the results and the change to Sample.Test.verified.txt is committed to source control along with the change to ClassBeingTested.

VerifyJson

VerifyJson performs the following actions

  • Convert to JToken (if necessary).
  • Apply ignore member by name for keys.
  • PrettyPrint the resulting text.

[Fact]
public Task VerifyJsonString()
{
    var json = "{'key': {'msg': 'No action taken'}}";
    return VerifyJson(json);
}

[Fact]
public Task VerifyJsonStream()
{
    var json = "{'key': {'msg': 'No action taken'}}";
    var stream = new MemoryStream(Encoding.UTF8.GetBytes(json));
    return VerifyJson(stream);
}

[Fact]
public Task StreamMember()
{
    var stream = new MemoryStream(Encoding.UTF8.GetBytes("value"));
    return Verify(new
    {
        stream
    });
}

[Fact]
public Task VerifyJsonJToken()
{
    var json = "{'key': {'msg': 'No action taken'}}";
    var target = JToken.Parse(json);
    return Verify(target);
}

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Results in:

{
  key: {
    msg: No action taken
  }
}

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Source control: Received and Verified files

Received

  • All *.received.* files should be excluded from source control.

eg. add the following to .gitignore

*.received.*

If using UseSplitModeForUniqueDirectory also include:

*.received/

Verified

All *.verified.* files should be committed to source control.

All text extensions of *.verified.* and have eol set to lf.

eg add the following to .gitattributes

*.verified.txt text eol=lf
*.verified.xml text eol=lf
*.verified.json text eol=lf

Static settings

Most settings are available at the both global level and at the instance level.

When modifying settings at the both global level it should be done using a Module Initializer:

[UsesVerify]
public class StaticSettings
{
    [Fact]
    public Task Test() =>
        Verify("String to verify");
}

public static class StaticSettingsUsage
{
    [ModuleInitializer]
    public static void Initialize() =>
        VerifierSettings.AddScrubber(_ => _.Replace("String to verify", "new value"));
}

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VerifyResult

In some scenarios it can be helpful to get access to the resulting *.verified.* files after a successful run. For example to do an explicit check for contains or not-contains in the resulting text. To allow this all Verify methods return a VerifyResult.

var result = await Verify(
    new
    {
        Property = "Value To Check"
    });
Assert.Contains("Value To Check", result.Text);

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If using Verifier.Throws, the resulting Exception will also be accessible

var result = await Verifier.Throws(MethodThatThrows);
Assert.NotNull(result.Exception);

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CurrentFile

Utility for finding paths based on the current file.

using IOPath = System.IO.Path;

namespace VerifyTests;

public static class CurrentFile
{
    public static string Path([CallerFilePath] string file = "") =>
        file;

    public static string Directory([CallerFilePath] string file = "") =>
        IOPath.GetDirectoryName(file)!;

    public static string Relative(string relative, [CallerFilePath] string file = "")
    {
        var directory = IOPath.GetDirectoryName(file)!;
        return IOPath.Combine(directory, relative);
    }
}

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Versioning

Verify follows Semantic Versioning. The same applies for extensions to Verify. Small changes in the resulting snapshot files may be deployed in a minor version. As such nuget updates to Verify.* should be done as follows:

  • Updates all Verify.*packages in isolation
  • Re-run all tests.
  • If there are changes, ensure they look correct given the release notes. If the changes do not look correct, raise an issue.
  • Accept those changes.

Snapshot changes do not trigger a major version change to avoid causing Diamond dependency issues for downstream extensions.

Media

Extensions

More Documentation

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Helmet designed by Leonidas Ikonomou from The Noun Project.

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Verify is a snapshot tool that simplifies the assertion of complex data models and documents.

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