Mutant is a mutation testing tool for ruby.
The idea is that if code can be changed and your tests do not notice, either that code isn't being covered or it does not have a speced side effect.
A more readable introduction can be found under: http://solnic.eu/2013/01/23/mutation-testing-with-mutant.html
Mutant supports MRI and RBX 1.9 and 2.0, while support for jruby is planned. It should also work under any ruby engine that supports POSIX-fork(2) semantics. Support for MRI 2.1 is unstable, because this MRI release segfaults on basic metaprogramming mutants dependencies do.
Only rspec2 is supported currently.
Projects using Mutant
The following projects adopted mutant, and aim 100% mutation coverage:
- various small/minor stuff under https://github.com/mbj
Feel free to ping me to add your project to the list!
Install the gem
mutant via your preferred method.
gem install mutant
If you plan to use the rspec integration you'll have to install
gem intall mutant-rspec
Mutant supports a very wide range of mutation operators. Listing them all in detail would blow this document up.
It is planned to parse a list of mutation operators from the source. In the meantime please refer to the
code each subclass of
emits around 3-6 mutations.
Currently mutant covers the majority of ruby's complex nodes that often occur in method bodies.
Some stats from the axiom library:
Subjects: 424 # Amount of subjects being mutated (currently only methods) Mutations: 6760 # Amount of mutations mutant generated (~13 mutations per method) Kills: 6664 # Amount of successfully killed mutations Runtime: 5123.13s # Total runtime Killtime: 5092.63s # Time spend killing mutations Overhead: 0.60% Coverage: 98.58% # Coverage score Alive: 96 # Amount of alive mutations.
Nodes still missing a dedicated mutator are handled via the Generic mutator. The goal is to remove this mutator and have dedicated mutator for every type of node and removing the Generic handler altogether.
cd virtus # Run mutant on virtus namespace mutant --include lib --require virtus --use rspec ::Virtus* # Run mutant on specific virtus class mutant --include lib --require virtus --use rspec ::Virtus::Attribute # Run mutant on specific virtus class method mutant --include lib --require virtus --use rspec ::Virtus::Attribute.build # Run mutant on specific virtus instance method mutant --include lib --require virtus --use rspec ::Virtus::Attribute#type
There are some presentations about mutant in the wild:
- Eurocamp-2013 / FrOSCon-2013 http://slid.es/markusschirp/mutation-testing
- Cologne.rb https://github.com/DonSchado/colognerb-on-mutant/blob/master/mutation_testing_slides.pdf
Mutant currently mutates code in instance and singleton methods. It is planned to support mutation of constant definitions and domain specific languages, DSL probably as plugins.
Mutation testing is slow. The key to making it fast is selecting the correct set of tests to run. Mutant currently supports the following built-in strategy for selecting tests/specs:
Mutant uses the "longest rspec example group descriptions prefix match" to select the tests to run.
Example for a subject like
Foo::Bar#baz it will run all example groups with description prefixes in
Foo. The order is important, so if mutant finds example groups in the
current prefix level, these example groups must kill the mutation.
This test selection strategy is compatible with the old
The old flags where removed. It allows to define very fine grained specs, or coarse grained - as you like.
I'm very happy to receive/answer feedback/questions and critism.
- GitHub Issues https://github.com/mbj/mutant/issues
- Ping me on https://twitter.com/_m_b_j_
- #mutant channel on freenode, I hang around on CET daytimes. (nick mbj) You'll also find others ROM team members here that can answer questions.
- Markus Schirp (mbj)
- A gist from dkubb showing ideas.
- Older abandoned mutant. For motivating me doing this one.
- heckle. For getting me into mutation testing.
- Fork the project.
- Make your feature addition or bug fix.
- Add tests for it. This is important so I don't break it in a future version unintentionally.
- Commit, do not mess with Rakefile or version (if you want to have your own version, that is fine but bump version in a commit by itself I can ignore when I pull)
- Send me a pull request. Bonus points for topic branches.
See LICENSE file.