Custom SonarQube rules for Unit Tests

I need a new rule

In our project we use (formely Sonar) to manage our code quality. It is a great tool and I recommend everyone to set it up and read its reports.

Recently, we've agreed that it's better to use assertj assertions in our unit tests than JUnit's. So I've decided to write a simple rule that checks if some of JUnit asserts assertTrue, assertFalse, assertNull and others are used. Then, I've discovered it's not so easy to do it with Sonar:

  • only 10 code quality rules are applied to unit tests - they are in special repository PMD Unit Tests (source)
  • these 10 rules are disabled by default, you have to enable them by hand
  • you cannot add new rules to this group

However, it turned out it is doable with a small tricks.

Custom PMD Unit Tests rule tutorial

Create your XPath expression by following this tutorial on how to create custom PMD rule. There is a visual editor to test your rules as you develop them - that's great. My XPath expression to avoid all JUnit assertions looks like this:

//PrimaryPrefix/Name[@Image='assertEquals' or @Image='assertNull' or @Image='assertNotNull' or @Image='assertSame' or @Image='assertNotSame' or @Image='assertArrayEquals' or @Image='assertTrue' or @Image='assertFalse']

Go to your Sonar installation, log in as an Administrator, head to Quality Profiles and select a profile that you use. Search for "xpath" and change Activation to Any. You should see two results like this:

Expand XPath rule template (dont' worry that it says it's deprecated) and then click Copy rule. Fill a form with message and XPath and save it. Then take a look at the bottom - you need an identifier of this rule:

You have created a PMD rule, now you need to move it to PMD Unit Tests group. Connect to Sonar's MySQL database. Search for your rule by key:

mysql> select id, plugin_rule_key, plugin_name, parent_id, status from rules where plugin_rule_key='XPathRule_1385721910';
+-----+----------------------+----------------+-----------+-------------+
| id | plugin_rule_key | plugin_name | parent_id | status |
+-----+----------------------+----------------+-----------+-------------+
| 903 | XPathRule_1385721910 | pmd | NULL | DEPRECATED |
+-----+----------------------+----------------+-----------+-------------+
1 row in set (0.00 sec)

Update plugin_name and status (remember to use appropiate primary key for id column):

mysql> update rules set plugin_name='pmd-unit-tests', status='READY' where id=903;
Query OK, 1 row affected (0.00 sec)
Rows matched: 1 Changed: 1 Warnings: 0

There is one step left. Sonar will change this rule's status to REMOVED on restart due to his boot checks. You need to trick him and change parent_id to other's PMD Unit Tests rule. List all these rules and choose one's identifier.

mysql> select id, plugin_name, status from rules where plugin_name='pmd-unit-tests';
+-----+----------------+---------+
| id | plugin_name | status |
+-----+----------------+---------+
| 775 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 776 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 777 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 778 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 779 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 780 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 781 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 782 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 783 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 784 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 903 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
+-----+----------------+---------+
11 rows in set (0.00 sec)

Choose any id you like, let's say 775 and apply it as parent_id to your newly created rule:

mysql> update rules set parent_id=775 where id=903;
Query OK, 1 row affected (0.00 sec)
Rows matched: 1 Changed: 1 Warnings: 0

Go to your Quality profile and make sure your rule is active! Check it twice, it's easy to forget that step. It's all set up, enjoy your analysis!

Custom SonarQube rules for Unit Tests

I need a new rule

In our project we use (formely Sonar) to manage our code quality. It is a great tool and I recommend everyone to set it up and read its reports.

Recently, we've agreed that it's better to use assertj assertions in our unit tests than JUnit's. So I've decided to write a simple rule that checks if some of JUnit asserts assertTrue, assertFalse, assertNull and others are used. Then, I've discovered it's not so easy to do it with Sonar:

  • only 10 code quality rules are applied to unit tests - they are in special repository PMD Unit Tests (source)
  • these 10 rules are disabled by default, you have to enable them by hand
  • you cannot add new rules to this group

However, it turned out it is doable with a small tricks.

Custom PMD Unit Tests rule tutorial

Create your XPath expression by following this tutorial on how to create custom PMD rule. There is a visual editor to test your rules as you develop them - that's great. My XPath expression to avoid all JUnit assertions looks like this:

//PrimaryPrefix/Name[@Image='assertEquals' or @Image='assertNull' or @Image='assertNotNull' or @Image='assertSame' or @Image='assertNotSame' or @Image='assertArrayEquals' or @Image='assertTrue' or @Image='assertFalse']

Go to your Sonar installation, log in as an Administrator, head to Quality Profiles and select a profile that you use. Search for "xpath" and change Activation to Any. You should see two results like this:

Expand XPath rule template (dont' worry that it says it's deprecated) and then click Copy rule. Fill a form with message and XPath and save it. Then take a look at the bottom - you need an identifier of this rule:

You have created a PMD rule, now you need to move it to PMD Unit Tests group. Connect to Sonar's MySQL database. Search for your rule by key:

mysql> select id, plugin_rule_key, plugin_name, parent_id, status from rules where plugin_rule_key='XPathRule_1385721910';
+-----+----------------------+----------------+-----------+-------------+
| id | plugin_rule_key | plugin_name | parent_id | status |
+-----+----------------------+----------------+-----------+-------------+
| 903 | XPathRule_1385721910 | pmd | NULL | DEPRECATED |
+-----+----------------------+----------------+-----------+-------------+
1 row in set (0.00 sec)

Update plugin_name and status (remember to use appropiate primary key for id column):

mysql> update rules set plugin_name='pmd-unit-tests', status='READY' where id=903;
Query OK, 1 row affected (0.00 sec)
Rows matched: 1 Changed: 1 Warnings: 0

There is one step left. Sonar will change this rule's status to REMOVED on restart due to his boot checks. You need to trick him and change parent_id to other's PMD Unit Tests rule. List all these rules and choose one's identifier.

mysql> select id, plugin_name, status from rules where plugin_name='pmd-unit-tests';
+-----+----------------+---------+
| id | plugin_name | status |
+-----+----------------+---------+
| 775 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 776 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 777 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 778 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 779 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 780 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 781 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 782 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 783 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 784 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
| 903 | pmd-unit-tests | READY |
+-----+----------------+---------+
11 rows in set (0.00 sec)

Choose any id you like, let's say 775 and apply it as parent_id to your newly created rule:

mysql> update rules set parent_id=775 where id=903;
Query OK, 1 row affected (0.00 sec)
Rows matched: 1 Changed: 1 Warnings: 0

Go to your Quality profile and make sure your rule is active! Check it twice, it's easy to forget that step. It's all set up, enjoy your analysis!

Integration tests with Maven and JUnit

There is no doubt that integration tests phase is crucial in modern applications development. We need to test behaviour of our subsystems and how they interact with other modules. Using JUnit and Maven it's quite easy to create integration tests and run them in separate phase than unit test. It is very important, because integration tests tend to take much more time than unit ones because they work with database, network connections, other subsystems etc. Therefore, we want to run them more rarely. With JUnit in version >= 4.8 there are two approaches for creating and running integration test:
  • using naming conventions and specifying separate executions for maven-surefire plugin
  • create marking interface and mark integration tests with @Category annotation and run test from failsafe-plugin (although it is possible to use surefire in both cases)
 

Separate executions

First method needs naming convention like naming all unit tests with "..Test.java" postfix (or "..Spec.groovy" ;) and integration tests with "..IntegrationTest.java". Then we need to change maven surefire configuration:
<plugin>
    <groupId>org.apache.maven.plugins</groupId>
    <artifactId>maven-surefire-plugin</artifactId>
    <version>2.15</version>
    <configuration>
        <skip>true</skip>    
    </configuration>
</plugin>
What I did here is forcing maven to skip default test phase. Instead of that, I will configure two separate executions (just below the <configuration> section):
<executions>
    <execution>
        <id>unit-tests</id>
        <phase>test</phase>
        <goals>
            <goal>test</goal>
        </goals>
        <configuration>
            <skip>false</skip>
            <includes>
                <include>**/*Test.class</include>
                <include>**/*Spec.class</include>
            </includes>
            <excludes>
                <exclude>**/*IntegrationTest.class</exclude>
            </excludes>
        </configuration>
    </execution>
    <execution>
        <id>integration-tests</id>
        <phase>integration-test</phase>
        <goals>
            <goal>test</goal>
        </goals>
        <configuration>
            <skip>false</skip>
            <includes>
                <include>**/*IntegrationTest.class</include>
            </includes>
        </configuration>
    </execution>
</executions>
In unit test execution I include all test that match naming convention for unit tests (both JUnit and spock ones) and exclude files matching integration test pattern and in integration test execution I did something opposite ;)

Annotations

Another method requires defining of marking interface like this:
package info.rnowak.webtex.common.test;

public interface IntegrationTest {

}
Then we can mark our integration test class with:
@Category(IntegrationTest.class)
Next thing is changing of surefire plugin configuration to omit integration test:
<plugin>
    <groupId>org.apache.maven.plugins</groupId>
    <artifactId>maven-surefire-plugin</artifactId>
    <version>2.15</version>
    <configuration>
        <includes>
            <include>**/*Test.class</include>
            <include>**/*Spec.class</include>
        </includes>  
        <excludedGroups>info.rnowak.webtex.common.test.IntegrationTest</excludedGroups> 
    </configuration>
</plugin>
What has changed here is new <excludedGroups> tag with name of interface which marks our integration tests. Next, we need to add and configure maven-failsafe plugin in order to run test from out integration test group:
<plugin><plugin>
    <groupId>org.apache.maven.plugins</groupId>
    <artifactId>maven-failsafe-plugin</artifactId>
    <version>2.15</version>
    <executions>
        <execution>
            <goals>
                <goal>integration-test</goal>
            </goals>
            <configuration>
                <groups>info.rnowak.webtex.common.test.IntegrationTest</groups>
                <includes>
                    <include>**/*.class</include>
                </includes>
            </configuration>
        </execution>
    </executions>
</plugin>
With this configuration failsafe will run only test marked with @Category(IntegrationTest.class) annotation, no matter what their names are.

What is better?

Well, in my opinion it's just a matter of taste and style. Annotating each integration class may be a little cumbersome but we are not limited to naming classes within specified convention. On the other hand, unit test and integration test usually are named with some convention, so annotations are not a big deal.