Automated Acceptance Test Practices and Pitfalls


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Key impediments and pitfalls people run into when trying to use AATs, and how to get over them

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  • IntroMy experience with AATsWhy – seen benefits and pitfalls, ways to mitigate the cons
  • Ask Q’s
  • Bad legacy code in mission critical system, not unit testable…Useful in general in a test suite for many reasons…
  • Acceptance TestsFits their requirements. The story is complete. Automated, pipeline, run
  • Readable by whole spectrum
  • What kind of tests do you run with your specs?UI – smoke, sanity, UI goo Functionality – Integration testsRun close to production; like a user would.
  • Mostly unit testsHARD to maintain, slow SO….
  • Unit test everything thru JavaScriptMost RELEVANT test cases for AATs (can’t hit all alt paths)Shouldn’t manually regression test
  • Tests are written before developer starts Whoever writes user storiesDev/Tester/BA BEFORE iteration starts
  • All know definition of User Story? Should be turned into specs before iteration starts (bus & )
  • -Communication with business stakeholders, BAs, QA
  • -Unit tests don’t account for everything, seams-Gaps in coverage, unit tests not hitting right test cases,
  • -Full regression doesn’t always happen-Manual testing lapseMistakes in testing, non-testing, non-regressingAllow testers to do more exploratory and higher level things, less boring
  • One of the things that takes the longest to get software delivered, is making sure everything works functionally and nothing that worked broke
  • Bugs will be caught earlier
  • Not doing, btw
  • Some have even said it’s not worth the cost
  • Some have even said it’s not worth the cost
  • Some have even said it’s not worth the cost
  • Automated Acceptance Test Practices and Pitfalls

    2. 2. Agenda • Part I: Overview • Part II: Pros • Why even talking about them • Part III: Pitfalls & Solutions • Impediments • Resistance/Bias/Value • Bandwidth/Velocity • Learning curve/Experience • Getting specs • Pitfalls • Speed • Maintainability • Poor adoption
    3. 3. Part I AAT Overview
    4. 4. **Legacy Nightmare <div class="pdl13 pdr15"> <div class="fll w744"> <div class="wp100 bdr02 bgc03"> <div class="pd08 mostDownload01_l vat"> <div class="bgc02 vat"> <div class="mostDownload_m bgc02 vat"> <div class="wp100"> <div class="fll bgc05 pdr03 h20">
    5. 5. Automated Acceptance Tests (AATs)
    6. 6. Given – When – Then Given I have no food When I buy 2 pickles on Amazon Then I have some food
    7. 7. End-to-end UI, Integration tests
    8. 8. Acceptance Component Unit Black box White box End-to-end Business facing Localized Technology facing
    9. 9. Manual Checking End-to-end UI Component Unit SOURCE:
    10. 10. Manual Checking Inverting the Testing Pyramid UI Acceptance, Integration Unit -Exploratory testing
    11. 11. Acceptance Test Strategy • Happy paths • Major unhappy paths • Legacy • Regression
    12. 12. Who writes acceptance tests?
    13. 13. What can you write them in? Vim
    14. 14. Part II How they work
    15. 15. Start with a story User story As an internet user, I want to search for “ALT.NET” And get valid results • Acceptance criteria 1: I get at least 100k results • Acceptance criteria 2: Results ordered by relevance … Scenarios Feature
    16. 16. Tracking AATs
    17. 17. Tracking AATs
    18. 18. Various Frameworks Browser driver Browser automation Test runner/harness BDD Framework .NET Selenium, Phantom.js Selenium, Waitn NUnit, xUnit, MSTest SpecFlow, Fitness (.NET runner), Cuke4Nuke, MSpec JavaScript Selemium, Phantom.js Phantom.js/Casp er.js Mocha, Jasmine Chai, Jasmine Java/Ruby Selenium, Phantom.js Selenium, Waitr JUnit, test-unit JBehave, Fitness, Cucumber/RSpec/ Capybara
    19. 19. Why Have AATs? (Pros)
    20. 20. Communication • Helps specify behavior of the system in plain text • Provides a medium for non-tech and devs to agree on Are we talking about the right system?
    21. 21. Seams, unit test mistakes
    22. 22. Automation “There’s no place for human beings to be doing regression testing manually.” -Jez Humble
    23. 23. Speedier deployments
    24. 24. Save resources
    25. 25. More testing during development
    26. 26. Why NOT Have AATs?
    27. 27. Why don‟t more people use them?
    28. 28. Impediments • Poor adoption • Bandwidth/Velocity • Learning Curve/Experience • Business users won‟t write specifications
    29. 29. Why NOT have AATs? • Maintenance • Speed • High false negatives, non-determinism
    30. 30. Questions?
    31. 31. Part IV Overcoming the Impediments
    32. 32. Minimize # of end-to-end tests • AATs should be a small portion of your test suite • Is your new feature entirely new? • Balance high # of unit tests + selected end-to-end & acceptance
    33. 33. Concise Specs • Declarative • Reuse steps • Concise, many methods, fat fixtures Bad: • Click on Log In button • Click username box and type „myUsername‟ and click „password‟ box and type „myPassword‟ • Click on link for Transfer Payment • Click box for amount and type 400 • Click „Transfer‟ button • Assert success message Good: • Login as „MyAccountName‟ • Navigate to Transfer Payment page • Transfer 400 dollars • Assert success message
    34. 34. Use a headless browser
    35. 35. Don‟t go through the UI • Controller down, service down • Use mocks, stubs
    36. 36. When Acceptances Tests catches a bug • See why bug got through unit/integration tests • Add unit, integration tests • Prune AAT? Unit
    37. 37. Organize your tests… Use Page Objects Keeps each page‟s tests • Encapsulated • Readable • Reusable
    38. 38. public class GoogleHomepage: PageBase, IGoogleHomepage { // Flow for this page } Domain Service UI GoogleHomepage +search(query) +clickSearch() +clickGettingLucky Data Access GoogleHomepageService +search(query) +clickSearch() +clickGettingLucky IGoogleHomepage +search(query) +clickSearch() +clickGettingLucky Page Objects
    39. 39. Page Objects Faster test creation – like Legos • Keeps step definitions very readable and thin
    40. 40. Hides details • Abstracts SpecFlow from Selenium • Keeps infrastructure at a lower level
    41. 41. Keeps changes minimal • Changes in the application should require minimal changes in the tests, and not in the specs
    42. 42. Easier to write new tests • Constructing page objects • Can be used to create a DSL
    43. 43. One way [When(@"I log in with the teacher account '(.*)'")] public void WhenILogInWithTheTeacherAccount(string orgCode) { var driver = new FirefixDriver(); driver.Navigate().GoToUrl(""); var userTb = Driver.FindElement(By.Name("username”)); var passwordTb = Driver.FindElement(By.Id("password")); userTb.SendKeys(username); passwordTb.SendKeys(password); var loggedInLink = Driver.FindElement(By.LinkText("Log Out")); Assert.That(loggedInLink != null); }
    44. 44. Better way – page objects public class LogInPage : PageBase { public PageBase LogIn(string username, string password) { Driver.FindElement(By.Id("UserName")).SendKeys(username); Driver.FindElement(By.Id("Password")).SendKeys(password); Driver.FindElement(By.CssSelector("input[type="submit"]")).Click(); return GetInstance<AccountLandingPage>(Driver); } public void HasExpectedTab(string tabName) { var link = Driver.FindElement(By.LinkText(tabName)); Assert.AreEqual(tabName, link.Text); } }
    45. 45. Other things • Managed test data • Distributed execution
    46. 46. Tips
    47. 47. Developer tips • Don't run in same assembly as other tests, so these can be run separately since they're very slow (i.e. nightly) • Navigation • Create different levels of suites depending on depth/level of feedback desired: • Smoke, Current iteration/sprint, Regression • Run AATs as close to the real environment as possible
    48. 48. Gherkin Specs shouldn‟t have much setup code Given I am on the homepage And I click login And I enter username of „username‟ and password of „password‟ When clicking „Log In‟ Then take me to my landing page Given I am on the homepage When logging in with „username‟ and „password‟ Then take me to my landing page
    49. 49. UI tests • Sometimes tests will fail if the page doesn‟t have enough time to load • Capture screen shots when tests fail • Run nightly • Run across multiple machines
    50. 50. Anti-patterns • Developers writing acceptance tests by themselves, for themselves • Tying AATs to an implementation - unit tests are implementation specific, AATs are NOT • Too much repetition in the gherkin • Too many UI tests • UI tests are failing too easily when changing the UI
    51. 51. Conclusion
    52. 52. Where we can be • Reliable tests • Reusable test code (even a DSL) • Separation of concerns • Short and clear tests • Fast test creation • Quick regression feedback • Tests that are understood by non-technical people • Fewer bugs
    53. 53. Resources: Tools used here: • SpecFlow – • PhantomJS – • Selenium WebDriver – Books: • Specification By Example, Gojko Adzic • Continuous Delivery, Jez Humble, David Farley • Growing Object-Oriented Software, Guided By Tests, Steve Freeman, Nat Pryce Articles: • Automated Acceptance Tests, • BDD with SpecFlow and ASP.NET MVC, development-bdd-with-specflow-and-aspnet-mvc/ • Using Gherkin Language in SpecFlow, • BDD with SpecFlow, MSDN, • Using SpecFlow with the Page Object, management/using-specflow-to • Problems with Acceptance Tests, • Top 10 reasons why teams fail with Acceptance Testing, fail-with-acceptance-testing/ • Maintaining Automated Acceptance Tests (ThoughtWorks), • Creating Maintainable Automated Acceptance Test Suites, Jez Humble, •
    54. 54. Happy Three Amigos Slides: tests-in-net Code: @wynv