An example of bad test, part 2

time to read 2 min | 235 words

Let us take a look at this test. When I saw it, the code under test called to me: "Help me, I being intimately harassed here!"


The problem is that this tests knows all sorts of unrelated things about the code under test. It knows that it should redirect, it knows where it should redirect, etc.

What is the relation between kicking off the checkout process and redirecting? Orthogonal concerns should be in different tests. I may want to send the users to Promotions, instead of Receipt, in the future. Should this test break?

So let us try this one:


We removed the obvious cases of too-intimate tests. But we still have very bad behavior in the test. Specifically, there is a big issue with how we are asserting that the pipeline was kicked off.

On the surface, it may appear that we are doing state based testing, but what we are actually testing is the behavior of the checkout process itself. This is not something that we want to test in this test. In this test, we just want to verify that the checkout process is started.

This test will fail when we change the checkout process, even though the behavior that we intended to test remained the same.