How to add unit tests to C++ code

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The indra C++ codebase is fraught with much peril. To reduce the amount of risk associated with refactoring legacy code, use unit tests. Here's how to use the new LL_ADD_PROJECT_UNIT_TESTS cmake macro and the existing tut test infrastructure to add a test to the build.

Overview

Tests go in a tests/ subdir of the project with the specific naming convention codefilename_test.cpp. The test code itself should use our basic tut template (which as of 2009-04 is somewhat in flux). Add a testing target to the bottom of the project using the cmake command LL_ADD_PROJECT_UNIT_TESTS(project sourcelist).

DO NOT add test code that:

  • talks to a database.
  • communicates across a network.
  • touches the file system.
  • requires doing special things to the environment (such as editing configuration files) to run it.
  • takes longer than about ~.1s to run on a modern computer.