Looking for more information on how to do PHP the right way? Check out PHP: The Right Way

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Laravel Dusk – Intuitive and Easy Browser Testing for All!
Feb 23, 2017 @ 12:54:06

On the SitePoint PHP blog there's a tutorial posted that introduces you to Laravel Dusk, a browser-based testing tool, and how it can be used to test a Laravel-based application.

End to end testing for JavaScript applications, particularly single-page-apps, has always been a challenge. To that end, Laravel released its 5.4 version recently with a new testing library: Dusk.

With the release of Dusk, Laravel hopes to give its users a common API for browser testing. It ships with the default ChromeDriver, and if we need support for other browsers, we can use Selenium. It will still have this common testing API to cater to our needs.

The tutorial then walks you through the installation process and two approaches to getting it integrated into your application. They then create a first test, checking to see if a user can log in successfully. They also include how it looks when a test fails and the screenshot that's taken just before the failure. It also covers the testing of Ajax-related calls, inserting a delay when a button is clicked to wait for the response. Finally, the tutorial shows a more advanced example involving a popup modal, a form and multiple interactions.

tagged: laravel dusk browser testing tutorial introduction ajax example

Link: https://www.sitepoint.com/laravel-dusk-intuitive-and-easy-browser-testing-for-all/

Laravel News:
Tips For Building Your First Laravel Package
Feb 23, 2017 @ 09:42:08

On the Laravel News site there's a tutorial posted from Dmitry G. Ivanov giving you some helpful tips on building your first Laravel package.

Laravel is a powerful and modern framework. It has tons of different features, which make our work faster and easier. But you can’t push everything into the single box. At one time or another, we’ve all been in need of something not implemented in the framework out of the box.

[...] A package can be a solution. Write your code once and use it in any number of projects. Maybe you found a bug, or want to make some changes? Do it just once in your package code and then pull required changes in all of your projects. Sounds good?

The article then breaks down the information into a few different categories:

  • The First Step (checking Packagist for something pre-existing)
  • Development
  • Testing
  • Documentation
  • Release

He ends the post by pointing out that there's several other things to consider when creating your package but they're a bit more in-depth than a short post like this could tackle.

tagged: laravel package tips development documentation testing release tutorial

Link: https://laravel-news.com/first-laravel-package-tips

Nikola Poša:
Testing conventions
Feb 17, 2017 @ 10:31:32

In a new post to his site Nikola Poša has suggested some testing conventions he's worked up over his time in development across projects.

Testing is an essential aspect of development, and test code should be treated the same way with regard to defining and using coding conventions and standards.

This time I would like to share few conventions that I follow when writing unit tests in particular, some of which I adopted only recently.

He breaks it down into three main sections:

  • Structure (file locations and namespacing)
  • Naming (files and testing methods)
  • Arrange-Act-Assert with exceptions and test doubles

Example code is included showing the concepts and implementation of the suggested convention, just to name a few.

tagged: testing convention tutorial structure naming arrange act assert

Link: http://blog.nikolaposa.in.rs/2017/02/13/testing-conventions/

Giorgio Sironi:
Book review: Fifty quick ideas to improve your tests
Feb 13, 2017 @ 11:15:03

Giorgio Sironi has posted a review of a book to his site that shares fifty quick ideas to improve your tests that can help with things like run time, ease of maintenance and following best testing practices.

Fifty quick ideas to improve your tests is, well, a series of fifty quick ideas that you can implement on some of your automated test suites to improve their value or lower their creation or maintenance costs.

These ideas are pattern-like in which they are mostly self-contained and often independent from each other. They are distilled from real world scenarios that the authors (David Evans, Tom Roden and Gojko Adzic) have encountered in their work.

He's included a few quotes from the book he found particularly interesting including mentions of:

  • a pyramid of software quality levels
  • misunderstanding that testing can somehow be completely replaced by a set of carefully chosen examples
  • difficult testing is a symptom, not a problem
  • the problem with time-based "sleeping" in tests

You can find the book itself over on Leanpub and can pick up your own copy for around $10 USD.

tagged: book review fifty ideas improve testing ebook leanpub

Link: http://www.giorgiosironi.com/2017/02/book-review-fifty-quick-ideas-to.html

Matt Stauffer:
Introducing Laravel Dusk (new in Laravel 5.4)
Feb 06, 2017 @ 09:46:06

Kicking off his series of posts looking at the new features that come along with the v5.4 release of the Laravel Framework Matt Stauffer has posted a look at Dusk, a tool that makes it simpler to test your Laravel based applications.

If you follow anyone in the Laravel world on Twitter, or if you listen to the Laravel Podcast, you know by now that Laravel Dusk is the new face of application testing in the Laravel world.

[...] With Dusk, Taylor has completely re-written how application testing works in Laravel. Everything is now based on a tool called ChromeDriver, which is a standalone server that actually controls Chrome/Chromium. When you write application tests, Dusk sends your commands to ChromeDriver, which then spins up Chrome to run your tests in the browser and then reports back the results.

He starts with a brief look at how testing was being performed in most cases on Laravel applications (using the "Integrated" package) but pointed out that that only really worked for non-Javascript driven sites. With the introduction of Dusk and it's use of the ChromeDriver to make "browsing" in the test simpler. He includes the installation process of the latest version of Dusk and an example test checking to be sure the string "Laravel" is in a page. He includes a gif of the test in action and talks about some of the new interactions and assertions included in the tool. He wraps up the post looking at the use of Pages and a few other miscellaneous tips to help you get your testing up and working productively.

tagged: laravel framework testing dusk introduction tutorial interactions pages

Link: https://mattstauffer.co/blog/introducing-laravel-dusk-new-in-laravel-5-4

ThePHP.cc:
Refactoring to PHP 7
Jan 31, 2017 @ 10:52:42

On thePHP.cc blog today there's a new post sharing some helpful hints related to refactoring your application to PHP 7 written up by a friend of the group, Tim Bezhashvyly.

Recently I have migrated a relatively large codebase from PHP 5.6 to PHP 7 and would like to share some of my learnings. To get the most out of this article, you should be familiar with scalar type declarations (and return type declarations). To learn about these and other features of PHP 7, I recommend the "PHP 7 Explained" eBook.

He makes the recommendation of a bold first step: enabling the strict typing on every file in your application to enforce the typing of all values. Next he recommends running your current test suite to see where the failures are. Changes are pretty high that you'll find issues with type switching and magic method handling. He suggests a method for migrating your code effectively to PHP 7: a test-driven migration. This focus works fine if your coverage is good but unless you're exercising all parts of your codebase things will unfortunately be missed.

He also points out some other changes you can make with this update including the removal of some PHPDoc annotations (you'll know the type for sure now) and modifications that may need to be made to current mock objects in your tests. There's a few other smaller things he recommends looking out for as well including the use of the "silencer" operator and exception changes.

tagged: refactoring php7 testdriven unittest testing migration strict types

Link: https://thephp.cc/news/2017/01/refactoring-to-php7

Matthieu Napoli:
Using anonymous classes to write simpler tests
Jan 24, 2017 @ 10:33:18

In a recent post to his site Matthieu Napoli shows you how to use the recently added anonymous classes functionality to help make your unit tests simpler. Anonymous classes allow for the on-demand creation of class instances without the need for the predefined class being required.

Anonymous classes were added to PHP 7. This article intends to show how useful they can be for writing tests.

He breaks it down into the three most useful places he uses them in his tests:

  • mocking classes to make it simpler to test method output
  • spies looking at properties in the mock class
  • fixture classes to help with needs such as reflection tests

Code examples are provided for each of the examples, especially the final point there.

tagged: anonymous class testing unittest mock spy fixture

Link: http://mnapoli.fr/anonymous-classes-in-tests/

Adam Wathan:
Optimizing Your PHPUnit Workflow in Sublime Text
Jan 17, 2017 @ 12:55:10

Adam Wathan has a post over on his site showing you how you can optimize your PHPUnit workflow in Sublime Text with the help of a few handy snippets.

I've been a big fan of Sublime Text's snippets feature for years.

They make it really easy to generate repetitive boilerplate code, and if you know how to use placeholders and substitutions properly, you can do some pretty magical stuff.

He shares some of his own snippets for automagically:

  • creating a new test matching the filename currently selected
  • making new test methods with some placeholder content
  • making the tests easier to run

For this last point he shows the use of the Sublime PHPUnit package to run the tests through the Sublime menu. Finally he ties it all together in a much simpler workflow including a final "all tests" run before he commits.

tagged: sublimetext editor phpunit workflow testing plugin snippet

Link: https://adamwathan.me/2017/01/16/optimizing-your-phpunit-workflow-in-sublime-text/

QaFoo Blog:
Getting Rid of static
Jan 12, 2017 @ 10:46:41

On the QaFoo blog today Kore Nordmann has posted a suggestion that could make your unit testing life simpler: get rid of statics (variables, methods, etc).

When people start (unit-)testing their code one of the worst problems to tackle are static calls. How can we refactor static calls out of an existing application without breaking the code and while producing new features? How can we get rid of this big test impediment?

They illustrate the main problem with a simple UserService class that contains a static function which, in turn, uses static calls to a Cache and a DB class. The major issue is that, when the static getUser method is called there's not a way to mock the Cache or DB classes, resulting in the actual handlers being called. They offer three things you can do to help refactor away from using static methods:

  1. Replaceable Singletons
  2. Service Locator
  3. Dependency Injection

For each item on the list a brief explanation is provided of what it is and how it helps you get away from the singletons scattered throughout your codebase (and how it makes things easier to test).

tagged: static refactor unittest testing singleton servicelocator dependencyinjection

Link: https://qafoo.com/blog/094_getting_rid_of_static.html

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Re-Introducing Jenkins: Automated Testing with Pipelines
Jan 06, 2017 @ 10:48:44

The SitePoint PHP blog has posted a tutorial from Alex Bilbie that "re-introduces you to Jenkins", a popular build automation software, and how you can integrate it, and a new feature called "pipelines", into your processes.

As our applications become more complex – with Composer dependencies, Webpack build scripts, and per-environment variables – we inevitably reach a point where testing all of these different intricacies becomes slow and laborious, especially when you’re tearing down and rebuilding the entire environment for each test. Likewise, code style might deviate over time and creating a production ready deployment archive requires a specific set of steps to be followed.

He talks about some common tasks that might be involved in the build (installing Composer libs, running PHPUnit, etc) and how automating them can help prevent issues and make it less time consuming for your developers as they make changes. Along with the latest version of Jenkins (v2.0) they introduced the "pipelines plugin". Pipelines allow you to define multi-step configurations Jenkins then uses when the build is executed. He walks you through installing Jenkins, setting it up and creating your first job. They provide the example pipeline script to get you started. There's also a section talking about the Jenkinsfile and setting it up in the Jenkins job to automatically be used (instead of a config in-job).

He finishes the post looking at multibranch pipelines and some things "taking it further" by adding in other plugins, customized with their own section in the Jenkinsfile configuration.

tagged: jenkins pipelines automation testing pipelines plugin groovy

Link: https://www.sitepoint.com/re-introducing-jenkins-automated-testing-with-pipelines/