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Basic Unit Testing in Rust

With a basic understanding of how dependencies work in Rust, you may learn how to write and structure a basic testing structure for your Cargo project.

Unit tests allow you to test your code for bugs using a set of predefined functions.

Be sure to open your project, first-cargo, as that is the repo we will be testing.

Putting tests below the main function

Tests are defined using the #[test] macro and are usually either in their separate directory on the same level as src or, in some cases, included in the project file.

Defining tests involves defining a separate module using the mod keyword and a special macro to indicate testing is taking place below the main() function:

mod tests {
// Testing functions go here...

Once this is defined, you may create functions representing unit tests within:

mod tests {
fn it_works() {
let result = 2 + 2;
assert_eq!(result, 4);

Looking further at this function, fn it_works(), notice the #[test] macro, which denotes that this function is a unit test.

Additional Testing Macros

assert_eq!(), assert!(), assert_ne!() and other macros are used within tests to make an assertion about a particular value.

  • assert_eq!(value1, value2) - tests the equality of two values. The test passes if they are equal.

  • assert!(value) - tests whether a value is true (or not). The test passes if the value within is true.

  • assert_ne!(value1, value2) - tests whether two values are not equal, the tests passes if two values are not equal.

Writing & running a test

The above test would work but is a bit bland. Let's import some external functions and run tests using cargo test. Similar to cargo run, cargo test is a command that only runs the functions specified as unit tests:

// The function we want to test
fn square(x: i32) -> i32 {
x * x

mod tests {
use super::*;
fn does_square_work() {
let squared = square(4);
assert_eq!(squared, 16);

Upon running cargo test, we can successfully see the test pass:

running 1 test
test tests::does_square_work ... ok

test result: ok. 1 passed; 0 failed; 0 ignored; 0 measured; 0 filtered out; finished in 0.00s

For more information regarding testing, it is highly encouraged to review the Rust Book's section on it.