A dead simple functional testing tool for command line applications

Related tags

Command-line pharaoh
Overview

Pharaoh : build that test pyramid!

GitHub Workflow Status GitHub release (latest SemVer) Codecov

What it is

Pharaoh is a dead simple, no permission needed, functional test runner for command line applications, written in Rust.

This tool scans for YAML entries in a folder (by default, the current directory) and run all tests in it.

An example YAML is as follow:

name: this test will succeed
cmd: printf 'foo\n'
stdout: |
  foo
---
name: this test will fail
cmd: printf 'fou\n'
stdout: |
  foo
---
name: cat should work
cmd: cat
stdin: |
  this is a line
stdout: |
  this is a line
---
name: failing for all three reasons
cmd: cat
stdin: |
  my input
stdout: |
  a different output
stderr: |
  an unexpected stderr output
status: 1

For each entry in such a file, Pharaoh will run the given command, feed it the specified stdin, and compare the captured output to the specified stdout, stderr and exit code. If not specified, these values default to respectively empty strings and 0.

Made in TDD, for TDD

Most often, what you will want to run is the program you are working on, and run functional tests over it. Specifically, Pharaoh is made to practice double loop TDD, and should be complemented with unit tests for your project-specific language.

For example, the first few tests for a calculator could be as follows:

name: do nothing if stdin is empty
cmd: ./myevalexpr
---
name: evaluate a single expression
cmd: ./myevalexpr
stdin: |
  2 + 4
stdout: |
  6
---
name: evaluate multiple lines
cmd: ./myevalexpr
stdin: |
  5 + 2
  8 * 5
stdout: |
  7
  40
---
name: handle syntax errors
cmd: ./myevalexpr
stdin: |
  2 + +
stderr: |
  "2 + +": syntax error
status: 1

Installing

Release binaries

Release binaries are available for Linux and MacOS. Please see the release page for all available binaries.

Simply rename the downloaded file to pharaoh, make it executable via chmod +x, and place it somewhere in your $PATH.

Via Cargo

Being developed in Rust, Pharaoh is available via cargo:

$ cargo install pharaoh

Who is this project for?

Pharaoh was designed with school projects and katas in mind, or more generally any kind of short-lived project where building your own tool is not worth it.

It is generally difficult to teach TDD to students, as their project are usually weeks long at most, and no testing tools are provided. Requiring students to develop their own tool in addition to their project is by experience too high of a step, and they default to testing by hand.

In addition, many students use restricted environment with limited permissions, and as such cannot use fancy tools that may use container technologies like docker. Pharaoh is a drop-in static binary that requires no further installation or configuration, and as such is ideal for those use cases.

A guided example: developing an application in double-loop TDD

Coming soon!

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