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Provides some testing helpers and an advanced MockTestCase.

Project Description


This package provides helpers for writing tests.

Certified: 01/2013

Browser testing with splinter

Splinter is a library which provides a common browser API with a driver for zope.testbrowser.

The ftw.testing package provides integration of Splinter with Plone using Page Objects.

For using the splinter features, use the splinter extras require:

ftw.testing [splinter]

Setting a package up for browser tests

It’s easy to setup your package for browser tests:

  • Add a test-dependency to ftw.testing in your
tests_require = [

  • In your use the FunctionalSplinterTesting layer wrapper:
from ftw.testing import FunctionalSplinterTesting
from import PLONE_FIXTURE
from import PloneSandboxLayer
from import applyProfile
from zope.configuration import xmlconfig

class MyPackageLayer(PloneSandboxLayer):

    defaultBases = (PLONE_FIXTURE,)

    def setUpZope(self, app, configurationContext):
        import my.package
        xmlconfig.file('configure.zcml', my.package)

    def setUpPloneSite(self, portal):
        applyProfile(portal, 'my.package:default')

MY_PACKAGE_FUNCTIONAL_TESTING = FunctionalSplinterTesting(
    bases=(MY_PACKAGE_FIXTURE, ),
  • Write tests using the Plone Page Objects:
from ftw.testing import browser
from ftw.testing.pages import Plone
from my.package.testing import MY_PACKAGE_FUNCTIONAL_TESTING
from import SITE_OWNER_NAME
from unittest2 import TestCase

class TestDocument(TestCase):


    def test_add_document(self):
        Plone().create_object('Page', {'Title': 'Foo',
                                       'Body Text': '<b>Hello World</b>'})
        self.assertTrue(browser().is_text_present('Hello World'))

Writing Page Objects

Write your own Page Objects for your views and content types. Put a module in your tests folder:

from ftw.testing.pages import Plone

class MyContentType(Plone):

    def create_my_content(self, title, text):
        self.create_object('MyContent', {'Title': title,
                                         'Body Text': text})
        return self

The Page Object should have methods for all features of your view.

Using the Plone Page Objects

The Plone page object provided by ftw.testing already has the most important features built in, such as:

  • portal_url handling
  • Login
  • Accessing Headings, <body>-CSS-classes, status messages
  • Adding content
  • TinyMCE handling

Currently it’s best to just look in the page object code.


ftw.testing provides an advanced MockTestCase which provides bases on the plone.mocktestcase MockTestCase.

from ftw.testing import MockTestCase

The following additional methods are available:

self.providing_mock(interfaces, *args, **kwargs)
Creates a mock which provides interfaces.
self.mock_interface(interface, provides=None, *args, **kwargs)
Creates a mock object implementing interface. The mock does not only provide interface, but also use it as specification and asserts that the mocked methods do exist on the interface.
self.stub(*args, **kwargs)
Creates a stub. It acts like a mock but has no assertions.
self.providing_stub(interfaces, *args, **kwargs)
Creates a stub which provides interfaces.
self.stub_interface(interface, provides=None, *args, **kwargs)
Does the same as mock_interface, but disables counting of expected method calls and attribute access. See “Mocking vs. stubbing” below.
self.set_parent(context, parent_context)
Stubs the context so that its acquisition parent is parent_context. Expects at least context to be a mock or a stub. Returns the context.
self.stub_request(interfaces=[], stub_response=True, content_type='text/html', status=200)
Returns a request stub which can be used for rendering templates. With the stub_response option, you can define if the request should stub a response by itself. The other optional arguments: content_type: Defines the expected output content type of the response. status: Defines the expected status code of the response.
self.stub_response(request=None, content_type='text/html', status=200))
Returns a stub response with some headers and options. When a request is given the response is also added to the given request. The other optional arguments: content_type: Defines the expected output content type of the response. status: Defines the expected status code of the response.
self.assertRaises(*args, **kwargs)
Uses unittest2 implementation of assertRaises instead of unittest implementation.

It also fixes a problem in mock_tool, where the getToolByName mock had assertions which is not very useful in some cases.

Mocking vs. stubbing

A mock is used for testing the communication between two objects. It asserts method calls. This is used when a test should not test if a object has a specific state after doing something (e.g. it has it’s attribute xy set to something), but if the object does something with another object. If for example an object Foo sends an email when method bar is called, we could mock the sendmail object and assert on the send-email method call.

On the other hand we often have to test the state of an object (attribute values) after doing something. This can be done without mocks by just calling the method and asserting the attribute values. But then we have to set up an integration test and install plone, which takes very long. For testing an object with dependencies to other parts of plone in a unit test, we can use stubs for faking other (separately tested) parts of plone. Stubs work like mocks: you can “expect” a method call and define a result. The difference between stubs and mocks is that stubs do not assert the expectations, so there will be no errors if something expected does not happen. So when using stubs we can assert the state without asserting the communcation between objects.

Component registry layer

The MockTestCase is able to mock components (adapters, utilities). It cleans up the component registry after every test.

But when we use a ZCML layer, loading the ZCML of the package it should use the same component registry for all tests on the same layer. The ComponentRegistryLayer is a layer superclass for sharing the component registry and speeding up tests.


from ftw.testing.layer import ComponentRegistryLayer

class ZCMLLayer(ComponentRegistryLayer):

    def setUp(self):
        super(ZCMLLayer, self).setUp()

        import my.package
        self.load_zcml_file('configure.zcml', my.package)


Be aware that ComponentRegistryLayer is a base class for creating your own layer (by subclassing ComponentRegistryLayer) and is not usable with defaultBases directly. This allows us to use the functions load_zcml_file and load_zcml_string.

Mailing test helper

The Mailing helper object mocks the mailhost and captures sent emails. The emails can then be easily used for assertions.


from ftw.testing.mailing import Mailing
import transaction

class MyTest(TestCase):

 def setUp(self):

 def tearDown(self):

 def test_mail_stuff(self):
     portal = self.layer['portal']
     mail = Mailing(portal).pop()
     self.assertEquals('Subject: ...', mail)


When testing code which depends on the current time, it is necessary to set the current time to a specific time. The freeze context manager makes that really easy:

from ftw.testing import freeze
from datetime import datetime

with freeze(datetime(2014, 5, 7, 12, 30)):
    # test code

The freeze context manager patches the datetime module, the time module and supports the Zope DateTime module. It removes the patches when exiting the context manager.

Generic Setup uninstall test

ftw.testing provides a test superclass for testing uninstall profiles. The test makes a Generic Setup snapshot before installing the package, then installs and uninstalls the package, creates another snapshot and diffs it. The package is installed without installing its dependencies, because it should not include uninstalling dependencies in the uninstall profile.

Appropriate testing layer setup is included and the test runs on a seperate layer which should not interfere with other tests.

Simple example:

from ftw.testing.genericsetup import GenericSetupUninstallMixin
from ftw.testing.genericsetup import apply_generic_setup_layer
from unittest2 import TestCase

class TestGenericSetupUninstall(TestCase, GenericSetupUninstallMixin):
    package = 'my.package'

The my.package is expected to have a Generic Setup profile profile-my.package:default for installing the package and a profile-my.package:uninstall for uninstalling the package. It is expected to use z3c.autoinclude entry points for loading its ZCML.

The options are configured as class variables:

The dotted name of the package as string, which is used for things such as guessing the Generic Setup profile names. This is mandatory.
is_product (False)
Set this to True when you have a product, which is when you have an initialize function in your package. This is always the case if you define new Archetypes contents. The product name is expected to be the same as package.
autoinclude (True)
This makes the testing fixture load ZCML using the z3c.autoinclude entry points registered for the target plone.
additional_zcml_packages (())
Use this if needed ZCML is not loaded using the autoinclude option, e.g. when you need to load testing zcml. Pass in an iterable of dottednames of packages, which contain a configure.zcml.
additional_products (())
A list of additional Zope products to install.
install_profile_name (default)
The Generic Setup install profile name postfix.
uninstall_profile_name (uninstall)
The Generic Setup uninstall profile name postfix.
skip_files (())
An iterable of Generic Setup files (e.g. ("viewlets.xml",)) to be ignored in the diff. This is sometimes necessary, because not all components can and should be uninstalled properly. For example viewlet orders cannot be removed using Generic Setup - but this is not a problem they do no longer take effect when the viewlets / viewlet managers are no longer registered.

Full example:

from ftw.testing.genericsetup import GenericSetupUninstallMixin
from ftw.testing.genericsetup import apply_generic_setup_layer
from unittest2 import TestCase

class TestGenericSetupUninstall(TestCase, GenericSetupUninstallMixin):
    package = 'my.package'
    is_package = True
    autoinclude = False
    additional_zcml_packages = ('my.package', 'my.package.tests')
    additional_products = ('another.package', )
    install_profile_name = 'default'
    uninstall_profile_name = 'uninstall'
    skip_files = ('viewlets.xml', 'rolemap.xml')


Runs with Plone 4.1, 4.2 or 4.3.


1.6.0 (2014-04-29)

  • Implement Generic Setup uninstall base test. [jone]

1.5.2 (2014-02-09)

  • Fix isinstance calls of freezed time in freeze context manager. [jone]

1.5.1 (2014-02-08)

  • Implement freeze context manager for freezing the time. [jone]

1.5.0 (2013-09-24)

  • AT form page object: add schemata helper methods for testing visible schematas and fields. [jone]

1.4 (2013-08-26)

  • Add custom mailhost class, remembering the sender and recipient of each email separately. [deif]
  • Deprecate @javascript because Selenium with PhantomJS is too unstable. Removes tests and documentation, the @javascript decorator still works for now but needs to be imported from ftw.testing.browser. [jone]
  • Page objects: add a Plone.visit(obj) function. [jone]
  • Fix a rare bug where the MockMailHost message list has been replaced by another instance. [jone, deif]

1.3.1 (2013-05-24)

  • Move Mailing helper class to its own module mailing. [deif]

1.3 (2013-05-03)

  • Drop official Plone 4.0 support. [jone]
  • Component registry layer: use isolated ZCML layers. When using the same layer instances it may conflict with integration or functional testing layers. [jone]
  • Add splinter integration and Plone page objects. [jone]
  • approved: add badge to readme. [jone]
  • MockTestCase: Support Products.PloneHotfix20121106 patch when mocking getToolByName. [jone]
  • MockTestCase: add checks that setUp is called correctly. [jone]

1.2 (2012-05-22)

  • Add stub_reponse method to MockTestCase and adjust the stub_request method accordant. [phgross]
  • Made providing interfaces configurable for the stub_request method. [phgross]
  • Let the stub_request method also stub the getStatus of the response. [phgross]
  • Add stub_request method to MockTestCase. [jone]
  • No longer tear down the component registry in mock test case. Use the ComponentRegistryLayer. [jone]
  • Add ComponentRegistryLayer base class. [jone]
  • Add mock_interface and stub_interface methods to MockTestCase, creating a mock and using the interface as spec. [jone]
  • Accept also interfaces directly rather than lists of interfaces when creating mocks or stubs which provides the interfaces. [jone]

1.1 (2011-11-16)

  • Patch mock_tool: do not count, so that it can be used multiple times. [jone]

1.0 (2011-10-12)

  • Initial release

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