Michael Whelan

behaviour driven blog

BDD Course in London

Last week I had the pleasure of attending Gaspar Nagy's 3-day BDD course at Skills Matter's CodeNode in London. I have been doing BDD for over 5 years now, and SpecFlow is not my preferred .Net BDD tool, but I still got a huge amount of value out of the course. Gaspar is very knowledgeable about BDD and I would highly recommend the course, whether you are new to BDD, a BDD addict like me, or even if you are just struggling with agile.

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Code compiling but ReSharper is red

From time-to-time, I have this weird situation with ReSharper and Visual Studios (different versions of both) where my code is compiling, but ReSharper is highlighting some things in red. I think there might be a few different solutions to this problem, and I'll add others here if I come across them. The solution that worked for me this time is just to delete the .suo files.

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Black-Box Testing ASP.Net: Extending Strongly Typed Navigation

In a previous post in this series, on reducing the use of magic strings, I showed a helper class for creating strongly typed navigation. This lets you derive a URL from a strongly typed controller action by looking up the route in the route table and returning you the same computed URL your application recognises.

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Black-Box Testing ASP.Net: Using ASP.Net MVC View Models with Selenium WebDriver

This post continues the theme of the previous post, in looking at how a little knowledge of the inner workings of the MVC application can go a long way to writing less brittle, more maintainable, UI tests with Selenium WebDriver. In this post I am going to look at how we can use the same view model in the test that the application view uses to automate the reading and writing of data from the web page. (It could also be a domain model class, I just prefer to use view models for my views and keep my domain models separate).

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Black-Box Testing ASP.Net: Reducing the Use of Magic Strings

Although UI tests for an ASP.Net MVC application are black-box tests, a little bit of knowledge of the inner workings of the application can go a long way to writing less brittle, more maintainable tests. For example, we have a lot of developer techniques for avoiding the use of "magic strings" in our application code. We can take advantage of these same techniques in our tests.

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SQL Server LocalDB 2014 Connection String

I spent way too much time today trying to figure out why I could not connect to my newly installed SQL Server LocalDB 2014 instance. I assumed that I could just update my connection string from v11.0 to v12.0 but it seems that Microsoft have changed the naming scheme for this version. Now the automatic instance is named MSSQLLocalDB.

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BDDfy Chilled

I like to use BDDfy for unit testing as well as for black-box testing. Unit tests do not have the concept of user stories, but otherwise I like to use the same Given When Then style of testing for all of my tests, and I think that I should have the same quality of reporting for my unit tests as for my acceptance tests. I have my own framework of code that I've built on top of BDDFy that I take from project to project. It gets a little tweaked each time, from NUnit to xUnit, or Moq to NSubstitute, or Castle Windsor to Autofac, depending on the tools each project uses. BDDfy is wonderfully customisable so you are free to make your test framework just they way you want it.

I decided it would make sense to make the mocking/Ioc containers pluggable and publish the library to NuGet. I'm a big fan of Autofac and NSubstitute, and had noticed that Autofac provides automocking container implementations for most of the major mocking frameworks. Then I stumbled on Chill, and found out that Erwin van der Valk was already doing something pretty similar and had done a great job with pluggable mocking containers, with future plans for IoC containers too. Chill is a BDD style testing framework.

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Black-Box Testing ASP.Net: Configuring Application Under Test

As I mentioned in the previous post, UI tests for an ASP.Net MVC application are black-box tests and run in a separate process from the web application, making it more difficult to control its behaviour and configuration. In this post I will continue the example from the previous post and provide some code examples of configuring an ASP.Net application at runtime to run with behaviour specified by the test code. You can see all the code from these posts on GitHub.

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Black-Box Testing ASP.Net: IIS Express and Selenium WebDriver

In the next couple of posts I am going to look at some of the practical aspects of performing black-box testing of ASP.Net web applications with Selenium WebDriver. Most types of Visual Studio tests conveniently run in the same process as the code they are testing - the System Under Test (SUT). These are white-box tests, making it straightforward to change the behaviour and configuration of the SUT. Black-box tests, such as UI tests, run in a separate process from the SUT, creating additional complexities for controlling its behaviour and configuration. In these posts, I'm going to focus less on concepts and more on the code.

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Testing DateTime

Static methods and properties tend to be difficult to test. You cannot easily mock them, unless you use something like Microsoft Moles. DateTime.Now is a notorious example of a difficult to test static.

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