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From Ovidiu Predescu <>
Subject AntEater: a functional testing framework for HTTP/SOAP apps
Date Thu, 04 Oct 2001 16:20:17 GMT

As I mentioned last week, thanks to Jeff Turner who pointed to me the
httpClient testing framework from Tomcat, I was able to do some very good
progress in implementing a functional testing framework for Cocoon. With some
more requirements from a team here, I actually extended it quite a bit to also
be able to handle incoming HTTP requests.

I called this tool AntEater (pun intended), as it's heavily based on Ant.

Anteater allows one to write tests that fire HTTP requests to a Cocoon
installation and test the incoming response, using simple matching operations.
If Anteater and Cocoon are on the same machine, you can use normal Ant tasks to
modify Cocoon files while the system is running, send another request to the
server and test in the response the modified Cocoon behavior.

Using Anteater we should be able to write functional tests that automatically
check Cocoon after any change we do to the source code. The only testing that
happens right now seems to be a manual one.

The intent is to have tests written for AntEater, along with the junit tests,
and perhaps a Cactus based framework (still looking at it), part of a testing
suite for Cocoon.

I was wondering what would be a good way to release it. As it is right now it's
a standalone package, much like Ant. You install it on the local filesystem,
and you get an 'anteater' script, that behaves just like the 'ant' script from
ant, while adding additional tasks. The reason for a separation from Cocoon is
that it's quite generic, not tied to Cocoon in any way. In fact one of the team
in my group plans to use it to test generic XML based applications, involving
synchronous and asynchronous SOAP messages.

I append the current documentation I wrote for it. I would appreciate any
comments from you on Anteater.

Ovidiu Predescu <> (inside HP's firewall only) (my SourceForge page) (GNU, Emacs, other stuff)

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