19 July 2008 01:10

z3c.tutorialtest was written to solve a problem: I had a complex internal web application for which I needed to write a tutorial for the users. One nice way to do this might have been to make a screen cast, but that would have been very time consuming and was likely to become outdated quickly.

What I wanted to do instead was to write a doctest and have the user watch the doctest being played in their browser. This package is a first attempt at that.

Whilst the package contains a lot of stuff to integrate TutorialTests into Zope applications, it's intended that the core functionality should be usable outside of Zope, though I haven't tested this yet.

Getting it

Currently, z3c.tutorialtest is only available from Assembla:

svn co http://svn.assembla.com/svn/z3c_tutorialtest/trunk z3c.tutorialtest

If other people use it I will move it to svn.zope.org and make a release.

Using it

z3c.tutorialtest defines the http://namespaces.zope.org/tutorialtest zcml namespace with a single directive, test. The test directive registers an existing doctest as a TutorialTest, for example:

    title="Business development introduction"

The TutorialTest test runner will set a browser object in the test namespace very similar to an instance of zc.testbrowser.real.Browser. To run the same test as part of your test suite, you'll therefore likely to want to create an instance a different browser class in your setUp code:

from zope.testbrowser.testing import Browser
from dsrscheduler.testing import FunctionalDocFileSuite

def setUp(test):
    test.globs = {'browser':Browser()}

def test_suite():
    return FunctionalDocFileSuite('web/ftests/businessdev.txt', setUp=setUp)

This package creates a new traversal namespace for tests. To view an index of all the available tests, visit /++tutorialtest++index Individual tests can be accessed at /++tutorialtest++<testid>.

To run a test, you will first need to start MozRepl (MozLab 0.1.9 on Firefox 3 works) on port 4242, and open a browser window. If the web application you are testing is running on a different machine, you will need to select "Allow outside connections" before starting MozRepl. Be aware of the security implications of this: if you're not behind a firewall, don't do it!

Then, navigate to ++tutorialtest++index and choose the test you want. The test should now play in your browser. Comments from the doctest are turned into Javascript alert boxes. (Obviously there's room for improvement there!)

Because z3c.tutorialtest runs tests against a live application, it uses the live ZODB and modifies real data. So far I've got round this by creating a new instance of the application, but that's only easy since I'm using Grok. I'm not sure what might be considered good practice here; it certainly requires some thought.

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