Ruby on Rails Application Testing

Testing is a very important component in applications development. Developers spend a lot of time and effort in testing their applications which could even take more time compared to the development process.

The efficiency of the application will only be known if the application will be constantly tested. Testing is also implemented for the security of users as testing will reveal bugs that might be used as a loophole for different form of attacks.

Ultimately, testing is conducted to make sure the application works as expected and would be useful for the intended users.

Although there are a good number of 3rd party applications a developer could use to test the application, testing Ruby on Rails could be better implemented when the developer writes the testing code along with the application. This framework already has a functionality which will help developers test their application before they launch it.

Writing tests for Ruby on Rails is very easy. While the developer is building the application, the framework will build, on the background; a testing tool is written that could be modified a little bit according to the testing preferences of the developer. That means the testing code is already written for developers while the application is being built.

The challenging part is actually on preparing your application for the tests. There are two things that you should consider while building your testing application:

  • Speed of the application AFTER testing is done – there are times that the tester might be too obtrusive that the application will be changed. More harm is done than improving the application.
  • Testing philosophy – there are different testing techniques to be considered. Although all of them are geared towards better testing some of them might be harmful instead of being workable in your application.

Test Driven vs. Behavior Driven

There are two ways a developer could go when writing tests for the application – the developer could either make some changes on the application by testing the application or they could make some testing after they have seen the application. The former could be considered as proactive testing since it is only through testing the advantages of the application could be found. The latter emphasizes on the ideas of the developer before they are fully tested.

The advantage for Ruby on Rails in using Test Driven Development or TDD is that through scaffolding, the application could actually be tested while in the midst of development. Before the application reaches another stage of development, Ruby on Rails can already test the functions since there are already functions made while working on the framework.

On the other hand Behavior Driven Development (BDD) could also be implemented in Ruby on Rails but its main difference is that the functions could be tested after everything is in place.

At first glance the clear choice for developers should be TDD form of testing. But if you are building a small application, testing behaviors after the have been built is highly recommended to save time.

Over Testing an Application

Although it is highly recommended to continuously test your application, there is such thing as over testing your application. This usually happens when you place your application in tests wherein it will stage a multiple mock usage. Although this is good as it will test your functions under heavy requests, you are merely causing the tests to focus on coding instead of the intended results on your applications.

This is often the confusion on testing. There is a big difference between load testing and functional testing. Functional testing should be the main focus of developers while load testing could be implemented at latest times when the functionalities are already in place.

Preparing the Application and Assertions

Before you run any tests, get your application updated so that simulation of functionalities is easier and the results could provide the actual behavior of the application. One thing that you should never miss when preparing the application is to update your database. When you do not have any data yet, prepare a mock data and migrate them in your application.

When your application is ready to run, complement your testing tool with assertions. Assertions are functionalities in Ruby on Rails made to emphasize a specific function and to produce a test result when the said function interacts with other functions.

Editorial Team at Geekinterview is a team of HR and Career Advice members led by Chandra Vennapoosa.

Editorial Team – who has written posts on Online Learning.


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