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README.md

LoFuUnit

Build status CodeFactor

LoFuUnit LoFuUnit.MSTest LoFuUnit.NUnit LoFuUnit.Xunit

LoFuUnit.AutoFakeItEasy LoFuUnit.AutoMoq LoFuUnit.AutoNSubstitute

Testing with Local Functions 🐯

in .NET / C# ⚙️

with your favorite Unit Testing Framework ✔️

Content

Introduction

Use the traditional Unit Testing Frameworks for BDD.

Use local functions to structure tests with patterns like:

  • Arrange / Act / Assert
  • Given / When / Then
  • Context / Specification

Use Auto-Mocking Containers to Mock / Fake / Stub dependencies.

LoFuUnit consists of a few packages that make it convenient for developers to write tests with collaboration & communication in mind.

Why LoFu? LoFu stands for Local Functions.

Why the tiger logo? 老虎 translates to tiger in English and is pronounced lou5 fu2 in Cantonese.

What are local functions?

Starting with C# 7.0, C# supports local functions.

Local functions are private methods of a type that are nested in another member.

Local functions can use the async modifier.

Testing

An example of a test with LoFuUnit.NUnit:

using System;
using FluentAssertions;
using LoFuUnit.NUnit;
using NUnit.Framework;

namespace LoFuUnit.Tests.Documentation
{
    public class AuthenticationTests
    {
        SecurityService Subject;
        UserToken Token;

        [LoFu, Test]
        public void Authenticate_admin_users()
        {
            Subject = new SecurityService();

            void when_authenticating_an_admin_user() =>
                Token = Subject.Authenticate("username", "password");

            void should_indicate_the_user_s_role() =>
                Token.Role.Should().Be(Roles.Admin);

            void should_have_a_unique_session_id() =>
                Token.SessionId.Should().NotBeNull();
        }
    }
}

Output:

Authenticate admin users
	when authenticating an admin user
	should indicate the user's role
	should have a unique session id

Terminology:

  • Test fixture – a class that contains tests
    • e.g. AuthenticationTests
  • Test method – a method in a test fixture that represents a test
    • e.g. Authenticate_admin_users
  • Test function – a local function in a containing test method, that does something along the lines of arrange, act or assert
    • e.g. when_authenticating_an_admin_user, should_indicate_the_user_s_role and should_have_a_unique_session_id

Packages 📦

Package Test Framework NuGet Sample
LoFuUnit - NuGet LoFuUnit.Sample
LoFuUnit.MSTest MSTest NuGet LoFuUnit.Sample.MSTest
LoFuUnit.NUnit NUnit NuGet LoFuUnit.Sample.NUnit
LoFuUnit.Xunit Xunit NuGet LoFuUnit.Sample.Xunit

Tests ✔️

Test fixtures can inherit the class LoFuTest.

Test methods can contain local functions that are invoked implicitly. These test functions can perform the arrange, act or assert steps of the test.

The LoFuTest base class provides two important methods for test fixtures. The Assert and AssertAsync methods invokes the test functions in the containing test method. The invocations will occur in the order that the test functions are declared. If a test function fails, the test method fails directly. Any subsequent test functions in the test method will not be invoked. Make sure that all test methods actually invoke Assert or AssertAsync.

Test fixtures that does not inherit the LoFuTest base class can invoke the extension methods:

  • this.Assert();
  • await this.AssertAsync();

Test fixtures can also be implemented so Assert or AssertAsync is invoked for all test methods in a tear down / cleanup / dispose method.

The LoFuUnit.NUnit package also contains the [LoFuTest] and [LoFu] attributes to mark test methods with. This will automatically invoke Assert or AssertAsync when the test method runs.

Examples of all these patterns can be found in the samples folder.

Succinct test functions can be implemented as one-liners by refactoring to expression body and omitting the curly brackets.

The naming of the test methods and test functions are important, because the names are the basis for the test output.

Remember:

  • Do not explicitly invoke the test functions in a test method
  • Only invoke the Assert or AssertAsync method once per test method

Output 📃

Visual Studio

The naming of the test methods and test functions determines the test output.

The naming convention is to use snake_case for test methods and test functions.

An underscore will be replaced by space in the test output:

  • foo_bar will be formatted as foo bar

Surrounding a word with double underscores will put quotes around that word in the test output:

  • __Foo__ will be formatted as "Foo"

Suffixing a word with _s_ will add possessive form to the word in the test output:

  • Foo_s_ will be formatted as Foo's

Take the opportunity to invent your own convention for naming test methods and test functions.

Consider using keywords like:

  • given
  • when
  • then
  • should

What characters can be used when naming test methods and test functions? Stack Overflow has the answer!

You can use the Log method from the LoFuTest base class to write custom messages to the test output.

The naming of assemblies, namespaces and classes can also make the test suite more readable in your test runner.

Limitations ❗

Rule #1: Test functions must return void or Task

The Assert method can only invoke local functions that:

  • are synchronous and returns void

The AssertAsync method can only invoke local functions that:

  • are synchronous and returns void, or
  • are asynchronous and returns Task

Rule #2: Test functions must be parameterless

The Assert and AssertAsync methods can only invoke local functions that:

  • has no parameters

Rule #3: Test functions must not use variables declared at test method scope, i.e. local variables in the containing method (including its parameters)

The solution for this is to use test fixture members, e.g. fields, properties, methods etc.

When a test function needs access to data from the test method or another test function:

  • use a variable declared at test fixture scope, i.e. a field

It is easy to break rule #3 by mistake, because:

Note that all local variables that are defined in the containing member, including its method parameters, are accessible in the local function.

Inconclusiveness ⁉️

Test functions that break these abovementioned rules can not be invoked when the test method is running.

The Assert and AssertAsync methods will first validate the local functions in the test method scope, before they are invoked. If any violations of the rules are found, an InconclusiveLoFuTestException is thrown. The exception includes a message with the local functions that should be reviewed.

With the [LoFu] and [LoFuTest] attributes in LoFuUnit.NUnit, the test runner clearly shows inconclusive tests:

Inconclusive

Auto Mocking

An example of a test with LoFuUnit.AutoNSubstitute and LoFuUnit.NUnit:

using System;
using FluentAssertions;
using LoFuUnit.AutoNSubstitute;
using LoFuUnit.NUnit;
using NSubstitute;
using NUnit.Framework;

namespace LoFuUnit.Tests.Documentation
{
    public class MoodTests : LoFuTest<MoodIdentifier>
    {
        string _mood;

        [LoFu, Test]
        public void Identify_mood_on_mondays()
        {
            void given_the_current_day_is_monday()
            {
                var monday = new DateTime(2011, 2, 14);

                Use<ISystemClock>()
                    .CurrentTime
                    .Returns(monday);
            }

            void when_identifying_my_mood() =>
                _mood = Subject.IdentifyMood();

            void should_be_pretty_bad() =>
                _mood.Should().Be("Pretty bad");
        }
    }
}

Output:

Identify mood on mondays
	given the current day is monday
	when identifying my mood
	should be pretty bad

Packages 📦

Package Mock Framework NuGet Sample
LoFuUnit.AutoFakeItEasy FakeItEasy NuGet LoFuUnit.Sample.AutoFakeItEasy
LoFuUnit.AutoMoq Moq NuGet LoFuUnit.Sample.AutoMoq
LoFuUnit.AutoNSubstitute NSubstitute NuGet LoFuUnit.Sample.AutoNSubstitute

Mocks 🦆

LoFuUnit uses AutoFixture as Auto-Mocking Container.

Test fixtures that inherit the LoFuTest<TSubject> base class can use mocks. The generic type parameter defines what kind of subject under test to create.

The Use<TDependency> method creates a mock / dependency that the subject is dependent upon. Use the API from the mock framework to configure the behavior of the mock.

The The<TDependency> method returns a previously created mock. Use the API from the mock framework to verify the interaction with the mock.

The Subject property returns an auto-mocked instance of the subject under test. Use the subject for the act or when test steps.

The Clear method reset the Auto-Mocking Container, and clears the mocks and subject under test. Make test methods isolated from each other, by clearing the state between runs. Test fixtures can also be implemented so Clearis invoked for all test methods in a tear down / cleanup / dispose method.

The Fixture property is exposed to the test fixtures. Use it in scenarios where the methods described above are inadequate. Consult the AutoFixture documentation for more information.

Examples of usage can be found in the samples folder.

Limitations ❗

Before you can access a mock / dependency via the The<TDependency> method, you must first call one of the Use<TDependency> methods for that specific type. The The<TDependency> method will return null for unknown mocks / dependencies.

Results

The test result output can be used as documentation.

With the dotnet test command, the output can be captured via:

dotnet test --logger:"console;verbosity=detailed"

dotnet test --logger:"console;verbosity=detailed"

dotnet test --logger:trx

dotnet test --logger:trx

Troubleshooting

If you something like this:

LoFuUnit.InconclusiveLoFuTestException : Invocation of test method 'when_Assert_on_inconclusive_test_method' aborted. One or more test functions are inconclusive. Test functions must be parameterless, and cannot use variables declared at test method scope. Please review the following local functions:
	should_not_invoke_test_function_that_access_test_method_variables
   at LoFuUnit.LoFuTest.ThrowInconclusive(MethodBase method, IEnumerable`1 names) in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\src\LoFuUnit\LoFuTest.cs:line 146
   at LoFuUnit.LoFuTest.Validate(MethodBase method) in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\src\LoFuUnit\LoFuTest.cs:line 118
   at LoFuUnit.LoFuTest.Assert(Object testFixture, MethodBase testMethod) in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\src\LoFuUnit\LoFuTest.cs:line 41
   at LoFuUnit.LoFuTest.Assert() in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\src\LoFuUnit\LoFuTest.cs:line 24
   at LoFuUnit.Tests.Integration.LoFuTestTests.when_Assert_on_inconclusive_test_method() in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\tests\LoFuUnit.Tests\Integration\LoFuTestTests.cs:line 89

Then you broke Rule #2 or #3, described above. Make sure that the local functions do not have any parameters. And furthermore, that the local functions do not access any variables declared in the containing method. Rewrite the test so that data is passed to the local functions via fields declared in the containing class.

If you something like this:

LoFuUnit.InconclusiveLoFuTestException : Invocation of test function 'should_not_invoke_async_test_function_that_returns_void' failed. The asynchronous local function does not have a valid return type. Asynchronous test functions must return a Task, and cannot return void or Task<TResult>.
   at LoFuUnit.LoFuTest.AssertAsync(Object testFixture, MethodBase testMethod) in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\src\LoFuUnit\LoFuTest.cs:line 84
   at LoFuUnit.LoFuTest.AssertAsync() in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\src\LoFuUnit\LoFuTest.cs:line 36
   at LoFuUnit.Tests.Integration.LoFuTestTests.when_AssertAsync_on_invalid_test_function() in C:\work\github\LoFuUnit\tests\LoFuUnit.Tests\Integration\LoFuTestTests.cs:line 129
   at NUnit.Framework.Internal.TaskAwaitAdapter.GenericAdapter`1.GetResult()
   at NUnit.Framework.Internal.AsyncToSyncAdapter.Await(Func`1 invoke)
   at NUnit.Framework.Internal.Commands.TestMethodCommand.RunTestMethod(TestExecutionContext context)
   at NUnit.Framework.Internal.Commands.TestMethodCommand.Execute(TestExecutionContext context)
   at NUnit.Framework.Internal.Commands.BeforeAndAfterTestCommand.<>c__DisplayClass1_0.<Execute>b__0()
   at NUnit.Framework.Internal.Commands.BeforeAndAfterTestCommand.RunTestMethodInThreadAbortSafeZone(TestExecutionContext context, Action action)

Then you broke Rule #1, described above. Make sure that the async local functions does not return void. Rewrite the test so that the asynchronous local functions return a Task.

Attribution

LoFuUnit is standing on the shoulders of giants.

It is inspired by https://github.com/machine/machine.specifications and https://github.com/machine/machine.specifications.fakes

It builds upon:

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