Testing any program before it goes live is just as important as the underlying code. You can’t afford to release a bug-ridden codebase only to recall it later and suffer immense financial and reputational damages.
Code integrity refers to achieving the desired outcome as intended by the developer. The results should also be repeatable in every scenario the code or the program is likely to encounter.
Testing frameworks reduce manual overhead and automate the task of running tests after every code amendment.
Optimized code is the best way to achieve the desired result. Not all routes to a solution are able to strike the perfect balance between functionality and speed.
Testing helps developers optimize their code to ensure their program is light on resources and packs the necessary functionality at the same time.
3 Types of Testing
Software testing, in general, can be classified into three major categories — unit testing, integration testing, and functional testing. These sub-categories test different sections and behaviors of the program before it is published.
1. Unit Testing
Unit testing is the process of running tests focused on a small section of the entire code to ensure its functionality. Every individual ‘unit’ of the code is tested before moving on to other testing processes.
2. Integration Testing
Individual units of a code are often dependent on other units for their proper execution. This is where integration testing verifies whether these integrated modules are working in coherence and not conflicting with each other.
3. Functional Testing
Functional or end-to-end testing is required to test the overall functionality of the entire program, ensuring it closely resembles the desired outcome. This testing is used to verify all the complex functionalities of the program including its dependencies on any external information.
What Is a Testing Framework?
A testing framework is a set of tools that enables developers to test their code in an automated environment.
A testing framework should have the following features at the minimum:
Rules or best practices for writing and organizing test cases
Ability to automatically execute tests
Displays the results of the tests in an easy-to-grasp manner
Another highlight of the framework is its extreme flexibility allowing developers to pair it with any library to perform tests. But this flexibility also requires additional work, at least for the initial setup.
Other key benefits of the Mocha framework include:
Front-end and back-end testing support
Easy error tracing with Node.js debugger support
Compatibility with all browsers, including the headless Chrome library
If you’re looking for a ‘zero-configuration’ testing experience, Jest might be what you’re looking for. Release by Facebook, Jest focuses on simplicity and works out of the box with no additional setup required.
Besides its fast setup, another advantage of the Jest framework is its impressive performance. Jest is primarily used for testing React applications but it is equally useful when testing Node.js, AngularJS, and Vue.js applications. Some other notable features of Jest are as follows:
Compatibility with React, Node, Angular, Vue, and other Babel-based projects
Standard syntax with ample documentation
Ability to manage tests with larger objects using Live Snapshots
Very fast and highly performant
This framework also offers the following features:
Small and straightforward syntax for easy testing
No requirement for any Document Object Model (DOM)
Support for both front-end and back-end tests
Karma is a popular open-source testing environment that prioritizes instant feedback without setting up too many configurations. Testers can execute the application script in real-time on browsers and devices like phones and tablets to verify the code in a practical scenario.
Karma also provides:
Integrations with tools like Jenkins, Travis, and Semaphore
Support for headless environments like PhantomJS
Remote testing directly from a terminal or integrated development environment (IDE)
Automating tests that typically need to be performed manually using a regular browser is one of Puppeteer’s highlights. Its major limitation is that it works only with Chrome and Chromium.
Here are a few other highlights of the Puppeteer library:
Support for browser-specific applications like page structure tests and generating screenshots of pages
Ability to crawl a single-page application (SPA) and generate pre-rendered content
Automation of form submission, UI testing, keyboard input, etc.
Easy capture of a site’s timeline trace to diagnose performance issues
Testing of Chrome extensions
Key benefits of the Nightwatch framework include:
Clear syntax for easy comprehension
Built-in command-line test runner
Standalone Selenium server in a separate child process
Automatic management of WebDriver services (Edge, Safari, GeckoDriver)
Flexible command and assertion framework
Some additional benefits of Cypress include:
Simple and easy setup
Debugging of web apps with Chrome dev tools
Ability to test anything that runs in a web browser
Active community on GitHub and StackOverflow
Quick test execution
Angular is one of the oldest and most popular frameworks for developing SPAs. Protractor is an end-to-end automation testing framework to test Angular apps in a browser in real-time.
Some other highlights of Protractor are:
Easy cross-browser testing with Selenium support
Additional locators like repeater, model, and binding
Integrability with frameworks like Cucumber, Jasmine, and Mocha
Automated screenshot capture and comparison
Support for parallel execution of test cases across multiple workstations