Testing: Getting Started

Introduction

Laravel is built with testing in mind. In fact, support for testing with PHPUnit is included out of the box and a phpunit.xml file is already set up for your application. The framework also ships with convenient helper methods that allow you to expressively test your applications.

By default, your application's tests directory contains two directories: Feature and Unit. Unit tests are tests that focus on a very small, isolated portion of your code. In fact, most unit tests probably focus on a single method. Feature tests may test a larger portion of your code, including how several objects interact with each other or even a full HTTP request to a JSON endpoint.

An ExampleTest.php file is provided in both the Feature and Unit test directories. After installing a new Laravel application, simply run phpunit on the command line to run your tests.

Environment

When running tests via phpunit, Laravel will automatically set the configuration environment to testing because of the environment variables defined in the phpunit.xml file. Laravel also automatically configures the session and cache to the array driver while testing, meaning no session or cache data will be persisted while testing.

You are free to define other testing environment configuration values as necessary. The testing environment variables may be configured in the phpunit.xml file, but make sure to clear your configuration cache using the config:clear Artisan command before running your tests!

Creating & Running Tests

To create a new test case, use the make:test Artisan command:

// Create a test in the Feature directory...
php artisan make:test UserTest

// Create a test in the Unit directory...
php artisan make:test UserTest --unit

Once the test has been generated, you may define test methods as you normally would using PHPUnit. To run your tests, simply execute the phpunit command from your terminal:

<?php

namespace Tests\Unit;

use Tests\TestCase;
use Illuminate\Foundation\Testing\RefreshDatabase;

class ExampleTest extends TestCase
{
    /**
     * A basic test example.
     *
     * @return void
     */
    public function testBasicTest()
    {
        $this->assertTrue(true);
    }
}

{note} If you define your own setUp method within a test class, be sure to call parent::setUp().