1: [[!meta title="Kyua: An introduction for NetBSD users"]]
2: [[!toc ]]
4: The [Automated Testing Framework](ATF), or ATF for short, is a software
5: package composed of two parts: the *ATF libraries* and the *ATF tools*.
6: The ATF libraries provide a toolkit for developers to implement test cases
7: in a variety of languages: C, C++ and POSIX shell. The ATF tools provide
8: the utilities to run such test cases in an automated way and to generate
11: The ATF tools have some
12: [design and, particularly, implementation problems](http://mail-index.netbsd.org/atf-devel/2010/11/13/msg000206.html)
13: that make it hard to add support for highly desired features such as
14: parallel execution of test cases, unified dashboards covering multiple test
15: runs ([like this one](http://releng.netbsd.org/test-results.html)), the
16: ability to run legacy or third-party test programs that do not use the ATF
17: libraries, and the ability to tune the timeout of test cases.
19: *Kyua's current goal is to reimplement _only_ the ATF tools* while
20: maintaining backwards compatibility with the tests written with the ATF
21: libraries (i.e. with the NetBSD test suite).
23: Because Kyua is a replacement of some ATF components, the end goal is to
24: integrate Kyua into the NetBSD base system (just as ATF is) and remove the
25: deprecated ATF components. Removing the deprecated components will allow
26: us to make the above-mentioned improvements to Kyua, as well as many
27: others, without having to deal with the obsolete ATF code base.
28: *Discussing how and when this transition might happen is out of the scope
29: of this document at the moment.*
31: This page provides instructions on how to use Kyua with the current NetBSD
32: test suite so that you can experiment with the tool, familiarize yourself
33: with it and provide feedback early on.
35: # What's in the name?
37: You should really think of Kyua as ATF 2.x. Then, why isn't it just ATF
40: To be honest, I never liked the ATF name: it was picked for me as part of
41: the Google Summer of Code 2007 program and I did not think about changing
42: it at that time. A year later, I learned that the ATF acronym is severely
43: overloaded, which makes it hard to find the project on popular search
44: engines, and has unpopular connotations in specific countries.
46: So, as part of the rewrite, I decided to choose a new name: a name that is
47: not an acronym and thus can be easily pronounced, and a name that is quite
48: unique in search results. The name is Kyua, which is just a play on the
49: pronounciation of the Q.A. acronym. Originally, my intention was to
50: pronounce Kyua as Q.A., but in reality this never happened. Today, just
51: read the name as your instinct would: "Kyu-ah".
53: # Main differences (aka "what to expect")
55: As of version 0.5, Kyua has (or is supposed to have) feature parity with
56: the ATF tools. That said, having feature parity does not imply that they
57: are the same. This section outlines a few of the differences that you
58: should be aware of before continuing.
60: ## Results database
62: Kyua collects the results of the execution of a test suite into an SQLite
63: database. User-friendly reports are later generated by extracting data
64: from this same database.
66: In ATF, the results of the execution were written to an internal format
67: that only atf-report could understand. Despite of the database, Kyua still
68: maintains the separation of "tests execution" from "report generation".
70: The contents of the database are immutable and incremental. This means
71: that, in the future, the Kyua tools will be able to provide historical data
72: for particular test cases, or for whole test runs (which is what other
73: NetBSD developers have ended up implementing multiple times outside of ATF
74: because the framework did not provide such functionality by itself).
76: ## Support for multiple test interfaces
78: Kyua has support for different "test interfaces", which means that Kyua can
79: execute test programs written using different paradigms and collect their
80: results into a single report. At the moment, two interfaces are supported:
82: * The "atf" interface provides compatibility with those test programs that
83: use the ATF libraries. This is the only interface currently used by the
84: NetBSD test suite, as there is no way to run any other test program in an
85: automated manner.
87: * The "plain" interface permits the execution of legacy test programs that
88: do not use any testing library. Such test programs are those that just
89: return 0 or non-0 to indicate the success or failure of the test
90: (respectively). This feature will allow the NetBSD test suite to
91: transparently execute third-party test suites (such as the IPF or GCC
92: test suites) without having to implement ATF-based wrappers. It will
93: also lower the barrier of entry to writing test programs for NetBSD, as
94: using the ATF libraries will become optional.
96: ## Lua configuration files
98: Kyua has two kind of configuration files: the Kyuafiles, which are the
99: files shipped with a test suite that describe what test programs need to be
100: run; and the user configuration files, which specify the run-time settings
101: of Kyua and the test suites. ATF had this same split of configuration
102: files, and they were written in a custom language, with a custom parser.
104: The Kyua configuration files are all Lua scripts. The major advantage of
105: this at the moment is that their syntax will be familiar to end users, and
106: that the parser for these files is well-tested. In the future, the use of
107: Lua will allow the implementation of more-intelligent test (and maybe even
108: build) scripts.
110: ## Heavier code base
112: If you take a look at the Kyua distribution file, you may notice that it is
113: about the same size as the distribution file of ATF, yet Kyua does not
114: currently replace the ATF libraries. This may be surprising because it
115: seems to imply that the codebase of Kyua is bigger because it "just"
116: reimplements atf-run and atf-report: i.e. by just reimplementing parts of
117: ATF, it is already as big as the whole of ATF.
119: This is true, for two reasons.
121: The first is that Kyua is more featureful and flexible: the features
122: outlined above have a cost in terms of implementation, and the codebase of
123: Kyua is more carefully crafted to allow for later growth. In particular,
124: all OS-specific details have been abstracted for easier portability, and
125: the SQLite and Lua libraries have been wrapped for safety.
127: The second is that Kyua is much better tested (which is very important for
128: a software package that you will rely on to validate your own software!).
129: To give you some numbers, ATF 0.16 contains around 400 test cases for both
130: atf-run and atf-report while Kyua 0.5 contains around 1100 test cases.
132: # Components
134: Kyua, as a project, is made up of a variety of components (which *include*
135: ATF, because the ATF libraries are *not* being rewritten). All of these
136: components exist in pkgsrc, and are:
138: * pkgsrc/devel/atf-libs: The C, C++ and POSIX shell libraries provided by
139: ATF. These are *NOT* meant to be replaced by Kyua.
141: * pkgsrc/devel/atf: The ATF tools, namely atf-run and atf-report. These
142: are deprecated and this package should eventually disappear.
144: * pkgsrc/devel/kyua-cli: The Kyua command-line interface, which provides a
145: superset of the functionality of atf-run and atf-report.
147: * pkgsrc/devel/kyua-atf-compat: Drop-in replacements for atf-run and
148: atf-report that use kyua-cli in the backend.
150: # Running the NetBSD test suite
152: There are two ways to run the NetBSD test suite with Kyua. The easy (or
153: trivial) way is to use the backwards compatibility ATF tools, and the more
154: sophisticated way is to convert the test suite to Kyua and use the native
155: Kyua binary. This section explains both approaches.
157: ## Using the ATF compatibility tools
159: The easiest (but also the least "future-proof") way to run the NetBSD test
160: suite with Kyua is to use the backwards compatibility ATF tools provided by
161: the kyua-atf-compat module. First of all, install the package:
163: $ cd /usr/pkgsrc/deve/kyua-atf-compat
164: $ make install && make clean
166: And then, running the test suite is as easy as:
168: $ cd /usr/tests
169: $ /usr/pkg/bin/atf-run | /usr/pkg/bin/atf-report
171: Please be aware that if the atf-run and atf-report tools provided by
172: kyua-atf-compat appear in your PATH before the real atf-run and atf-report
173: tools shipped by NetBSD, you will experience test failures for all the
174: tests in /usr/tests/atf/atf-run and /usr/tests/atf/atf-report. This is
175: expected: while the compatibility tools behave similarly to the real tools
176: from a user's perspective, they are not fully interchangeable. (For
177: example, the serialization format between atf-run and atf-report is
180: One property of the atf-run wrapper is that it uses the default results
181: database in ~/.kyua/store.db to record the execution of the tests. This
182: means that, once the execution of the tests is done with the compatibility
183: tools, you can still use the native Kyua binary to poke at the results
184: database. More on this below.
186: ## Using the native Kyua command-line interface
188: The preferred way to run the NetBSD test suite with Kyua is to use the
189: native Kyua command-line binary. This is the preferred method because it
190: trains you to use the new interface rather than relying on the old pipeline
191: and because it exposes you to all the new features of Kyua. Regardless,
192: this and the previous approach will yield the same results for a particular
195: Using the native command-line interface is a multi-step process because
196: the existing NetBSD test suite is not prepared for Kyua. Let's take a look
197: at these steps.
199: To get started, install the Kyua packages:
201: $ cd /usr/pkgsrc/deve/kyua-cli
202: $ make install && make clean
203: $ cd /usr/pkgsrc/deve/kyua-atf-compat
204: $ make install && make clean
206: Once this is done, configure Kyua in the same way ATF is configured "out of
207: the box" in NetBSD. Create the /usr/pkg/etc/kyua/kyua.conf file with these
210: syntax('config', 1)
211: unprivileged_user = '_tests'
213: The next step is to populate /usr/tests with Kyuafiles, as Kyua is unable
214: to read existing Atffiles. This is easy to do with the atf2kyua(1) tool
215: shipped in the kyua-atf-compat package:
217: # atf2kyua /usr/tests
219: And that is it. You can now execute the test suite using Kyua with any of
220: the following two forms:
222: $ cd /usr/tests && kyua test
223: $ kyua test -k /usr/tests/Kyuafile
225: Note that none of these will generate "pretty" reports. These commands
226: will only record the results of the execution into the database. In order
227: to generate reports, keep reading.
229: # Generating reports
231: Once you have ran the NetBSD test suite with any of the mechanisms above,
232: the results of the execution have been stored in the "Kyua store", which is
233: a database located in ~/.kyua/store.db by default. (This path can be
234: changed at any time with the --store flag.)
236: To extract a report from the database using the results of the latest tests
237: run, you can run any of the following:
239: $ kyua report -o my-report.txt
240: $ kyua html-report -o /var/www/results/
242: # Support and feedback
244: The Kyua manual is available in the GNU Info format and can be accessed by
247: $ info kyua
249: Alternatively, use the help subcommand to get built-in documentation. The
250: following invocation will print all the available subcommands:
252: $ kyua help
254: And an invocation like this will show you all the possible options for a
255: given subcommand:
257: $ kyua help report-html
259: If you have gone through the instructions above and started playing with
260: Kyua, please do not hesitate to report your experiences (either good or
261: bad) to [Julio Merino](mailto:jmmv@NetBSD.org)! Any comments will be
262: highly appreciated and will be taken into account for the near future of
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