UI Testing in Android


Testing in android is something that most people simply don’t do. When I first started with developing android apps, I followed the same dev cycle :

  • Develop a feature
  • deploy to a device
  • manual testing for bugs and errors
  • fix these issues due to wrong implementation
  • then again deploy and manually test and so on……

Trust me it’s a tedious process and no one actually can test for the corner cases that may arise. You may be able to cover like 85% of the cases for each feature but when there are a ton of features you’ll collectively cover much less than 85% as well. So, We should definitely write tests for android. I’ll start with Espresso testing first.

Quote from the Android developer website:


“Testing user interactions within a single app helps to ensure that users do not encounter unexpected results or have a poor experience when interacting with your app. You should get into the habit of creating user interface (UI) tests if you need to verify that the UI of your app is functioning correctly.

The Espresso testing framework, provided by the Android Testing Support Library, provides APIs for writing UI tests to simulate user interactions within a single target app. Espresso tests can run on devices running Android 2.2 (API level 8) and higher. A key benefit of using Espresso is that it provides automatic synchronization of test actions with the UI of the app you are testing. Espresso detects when the main thread is idle, so it is able to run your test commands at the appropriate time, improving the reliability of your tests. This capability also relieves you from having to adding any timing workarounds, such as a sleep period, in your test code.

The Espresso testing framework is an instrumentation-based API and works with theAndroidJUnitRunner test runner.”


Getting started

We first need to setup espresso in android studio. That can be done by adding this to the app level build.gradle

dependencies {
    ...
    androidTestCompile 'com.android.support.test.espresso:espresso-core:2.2.1'
}

After adding this dependency and setting up testing on android, now we can move on to write some tests. We start by adding a new class in androidTest where we will actually write the tests. There are 3 parts to writing an espresso test :

  1. ViewMatchers: Find a view to act/assert upon something
  2. ViewActions: something to perform an action(click, type etc.)
  3. ViewAssertion: something to verify what you expect

Components

  1. For writing tests in espresso we just have to use these three parts to see if the ui is working as it should.

    Let’s say we want to type some text in an edittext and see if the text we have typed is as we expect it to be.

    To start, we’ll see how we use viewMatchers. We need to find a view in ViewMatchers. For that, we will do something like this

    withId(R.id.edittext_id)

    Now we perform a click on this eddittext

    perform(typeText("Hello"))

    Now we join the two by wrapping in onView()

    onView(withId(R.id.edittext_id)).perform(typetext("Hello"))

    This will just type “Hello” in the edittext with the id eddittext_id, now we need to check if this is what was actually expected, for that we will have to further a viewAssertion on this like this :

    onView(withText("Hello")).check(matches(isDisplayed()));

    This is a cheatsheet that shows various methods that can be used in espresso.

    So this is how we can perform basic ui tests using espresso. Mainly people face the issue of deciding on the views that we have to perform this action on. Just think of the 3 components that we have previously talked about (View matching, View action and View assertions), if you think a view can have all three of these, then you can write a test for it. Go ahead and try it for yourself. Cheers!


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Read and Understand Codacy Reports

To begin understanding reports, let’s start with what Codacy is.

So. What is Codacy?

Codacy is an automated code review tool that helps developers to save time in code reviews and to tackle technical debt. It centralises customizable code patterns and enforces them within engineering teams. Codacy tracks new issues by severity level for every commit and pull request.

It can be integrated with the GitHub repository to review every commit and pull request in terms of quality and errors. It checks code style, security, duplication, complexity and coverage on every change while tracking code quality throughout your sprints.

You can integrate Codacy in your private/public repository by going here. Sign up with your Github account and follow the steps mentioned. More information regarding GitHub integration can be found here.

Features of Codacy:

  • SAVE TIME IN CODE REVIEWS
  • INTEGRATED IN YOUR WORKFLOW
  • TRACK YOUR PROJECT QUALITY EVOLUTION

Now we get to understanding Codacy reports.

Below shows and image of how a Codacy dashboard looks like, to evaluate a project. To evaluate a project we should know what are the Software Metrics”.

download

A software metric is a standard of measure of a degree to which a software system or process possesses some property. Even if a metric is not a measurement (metrics are functions, while measurements are the numbers obtained by the application of metrics), often the two terms are used as synonymous. Since quantitative measurements are essential in all sciences, there is a continuous effort by computer science practitioners and theoreticians to bring similar approaches to software development. The goal is obtaining objective, reproducible and quantifiable measurements, which may have numerous valuable applications in the schedule and budget planning, cost estimation, quality assurance testing, software debugging, software performance optimization, and optimal personnel task assignments. You can learn about software metrics by visiting here.

A Codacy Dashboard provides answer to the following 3 main things:

  • What is the state of your projects code quality?
  • How is it evolving throughout time?
  • What are the hotspots in your code?

Component of the Dashboard:

  • Introduction: The Dashboard is the central screen of any project on Codacy.
  • Project Certification: After running a complete on the project or the GitHub repository, Codacy provides an overall grade to the project from A-F. The grade depends on the following parameters.
    • Error Prone
    • Code Complexity
    • Code Style
    • Unused Code
    • Security
    • Compatibility
    • Documentation
    • Performancedashboard-certification
  • Issues Breakdown: Issues breakdown represents the different issues from different areas in a pictorial representation. It provides a quick overview of the total number of issues in the repository and the breakdown per category.
    Issues Brakedown
    Users can click on the specific category for more details.
  • Code Coverage: If you setup the code coverage on your repository, you will be able to see the overall covered percentage on the dashboard. It will also show the files with the worst code coverage allowing you to directly jump to the file to see the details.
    Coverage
  • Goals: Users can define individual goals to remove errors and get better grades for their projects.
  • Historic data: Codacy dashboard also provides an analysis of the Historic data, so as to keep a track of the progress on improving the code, milestones covered in reaching the goal.
    dashboard-historic-issues

Codacy provides a nice dashboard showing the metrics. Codacy saves hours in code review and code quality monitoring, from small teams to big companies. And as the Codacy team itself says “LOVED BY DEVELOPERS”, being a developer I wouldn’t deny this statement. It helped a lot in improving the code quality of my project Engelsystem.

Development: https://github.com/fossasia/engelsystem Issues/Bugs:https://github.com/fossasia/engelsystem/issues

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Continuous Integration and Automated Testing for Engelsystem

Every software development group tests its products, yet delivered software always has defects. Test engineers strive to catch them before the product is released but they always creep in and they often reappear, even with the best manual testing processes. Using automated testing is the best way to increase the effectiveness, efficiency and coverage of your software testing.

Manual software testing is performed by a human sitting in front of a computer carefully going through application screens, trying various usage and input combinations, comparing the results to the expected behavior and recording their observations. Manual tests are repeated often during development cycles for source code changes and other situations like multiple operating environments and hardware configurations.

Continuous integration (CI) has emerged as one of the most efficient ways to develop code. But testing has not always been a major part of the CI conversation.

In some respects, that’s not surprising. Traditionally, CI has been all about speeding up the coding, building, and release process. Instead of having each programmer write code separately, integrate it manually, and then wait until the next daily or weekly build to see if the changes broke anything, CI lets developers code and compile on a virtually continuous basis. It also means developers and admins can work together seamlessly since the programming and build processes are always in sync.

Continuous Integration (CI) is a development practice that requires developers to integrate code into a shared repository several times a day. Each check-in is then verified by an automated build, allowing teams to detect problems early.

By integrating regularly, you can detect errors quickly, and locate them more easily.

Solve problems quickly

Because you’re integrating so frequently, there is significantly less back-tracking to discover where things went wrong, so you can spend more time building features.

Continuous Integration is cheap. Not continuously integrating is costly. If you don’t follow a continuous approach, you’ll have longer periods between integrations. This makes it exponentially more difficult to find and fix problems. Such integration problems can easily knock a project off-schedule, or cause it to fail altogether.

Continuous Integration brings multiple benefits to your organization:

  • Say goodbye to long and tense integrations
  • Increase visibility which enables greater communication
  • Catch issues fast and nip them in the bud
  • Spend less time debugging and more time adding features
  • Proceed with the confidence you’re building on a solid foundation
  • Stop waiting to find out if your code’s going to work
  • Reduce integration problems allowing you to deliver software more rapidly

“Continuous Integration doesn’t get rid of bugs, but it does make them dramatically easier to find and remove.”

– Martin Fowler, Chief Scientist, ThoughtWorks

Continuous Integration is backed by several important principles and practices.

Practices in Continuous Integration:

  • Maintain a single source repository
  • Automate the build
  • Make your build self-testing
  • Every commit should build on an integration machine
  • Keep the build fast
  • Test in a clone of the production environment
  • Make it easy for anyone to get the latest executable
  • Everyone can see what’s happening
  • Automate deployment

How to do Continuous Integration:

  • Developers check out code into their private workspaces.
  • When done, commit the changes to the repository.
  • The CI server monitors the repository and checks out changes when they occur.
  • The CI server builds the system and runs unit and integration tests.
  • The CI server releases deployable artifacts for testing.
  • The CI server assigns a build label to the version of the code it just built.
  • The CI server informs the team of the successful build.
  • If the build or tests fail, the CI server alerts the team.
  • The team fixes the issue at the earliest opportunity.
  • Continue to continually integrate and test throughout the project.

The CI implemented in Engelsystem are as follows:

  • Travis-CITravis CI is a hosted, distributed continuous integration service used to build and test software projects hosted on GitHub. It is integrated using the .travis.yml file in the root folder.
    language: php
    php:
    - '5.4'
    - '5.5'
    - '5.6'
    - '7.0'
    script: cd test && phpunit
  • Nitpick-CI:Automatic comments on PSR-2 violations in one click, so your team can focus on better code review. It requires one click for integratting with the repository.
  • Circle-CI: CircleCI was founded in 2011 with the mission of giving every developer state-of-the-art automated testing and continuous integration tools. It is integrated using a circle.yml file in the root folder of the repository.
    machine:
    php:
    version: 5.4.5
    deployment:
    master:
    branch: master
    owner: fossasia
    commands:
    - ./deploy_master.sh
    dependencies:
    pre:
    - curl -s http://getcomposer.org/installer | php
    - php composer.phar install -n
    - sed -i 's/^;//' ~/.phpenv/versions/$(phpenv global)/etc/conf.d/xdebug.ini
    
    test:
    post:
    - php test/
    - bash <(curl -s https://codecov.io/bash)
  • Codacy: Check code style, security, duplication, complexity and coverage on every change while tracking code quality throughout your sprints.

Development: https://github.com/fossasia/engelsystem Issues/Bugs:https://github.com/fossasia/engelsystem/issues

Continue Reading Continuous Integration and Automated Testing for Engelsystem