# Unit Tests

Developers are encouraged to write unit tests during all parts of development, including adding new features, fixing bugs, and refactoring.

PX4 provides several methods for writing unit tests:

1. Unit tests with Google Test ("GTest") - tests that have minimal, internal-only dependencies
2. Functional tests with GTest - tests that depend on parameters and uORB messages
3. SITL unit tests. This is for tests that need to run in full SITL. These tests are much slower to run and harder to debug, so it is recommended to use GTest instead when possible.

## Writing a GTest Unit Test

Tip: In general, if you need access to advanced GTest utilities, data structures from the STL or need to link to parameters or uorb libraries you should use the functional tests instead.

The steps to create new unit tests are as follows:

1. Unit tests should be arranged in three sections: setup, run, check results. Each test should test one very specific behavior or setup case, so if a test fails it is obvious what is wrong. Please try to follow these standards when possible.
2. Copy and rename the example unit test AttitudeControlTest to the directory the code to be tested is in.
3. Add the new file to the directory's CMakeLists.txt. It should look something like px4_add_unit_gtest(SRC MyNewUnitTest.cpp LINKLIBS <library_to_be_tested>)
4. Add the desired test functionality. This will mean including the header files required for your specific tests, adding new tests (each with an individual name) and putting the logic for the setup, running the code to be tested and verifying that it behaves as expected.
5. If additional library dependencies are required, they should also be added to the CMakeLists after the LINKLIBS as shown above.

Tests can be run via make tests, after which you will find the binary in build/px4_sitl_test/unit-MyNewUnit. It can be run directly in a debugger.

## Writing a GTest Functional Test

GTest functional tests should be used when the test or the components being tested depend on parameters, uORB messages and/or advanced GTest functionality. Additionally, functional tests can contain local usage of STL data structures (although be careful of platform differences between eg. macOS and Linux).

The steps to creating new functional tests are as follows:

1. In general (and similar to unit tests), functional tests should be arranged in three sections: setup, run, check results. Each test should test one very specific behavior or setup case, so if a test fails it is obvious what is wrong. Please try to follow these standards when possible.
2. Copy and rename the example functional test ParameterTest to the directory the code to be tested is in.
3. Rename the class from ParameterTest to something better representing the code being testing
4. Add the new file to the directory's CMakeLists.txt. It should look something like px4_add_functional_gtest(SRC MyNewFunctionalTest.cpp LINKLIBS <library_to_be_tested>)
5. Add the desired test functionality. This will mean including the header files required for your specific tests, adding new tests (each with an individual name) and putting the logic for the test setup, running the code to be tested and verifying that it behaves as expected.
6. If additional library dependencies are required, they should also be added to the CMakeLists after the LINKLIBS as shown above.

Tests can be run via make tests, after which you will find the binary in build/px4_sitl_test/functional-MyNewFunctional. It can be run directly in a debugger, however be careful to only run one test per executable invocation using the --gtest_filter= arguments, as some parts of the uORB and parameter libraries don't clean themselves up perfectly and may result in undefined behavior if set up multiple times.

## Writing a SITL Unit Test

SITL unit tests should be used when you specifically need all of the flight controller components - drivers, time, and more. These tests are slower to run (1s+ for each new module), and harder to debug, so in general they should only be used when necessary.

The steps to create new SITL unit tests are as follows:

1. Examine the sample Unittest-class.
2. Create a new .cpp file within tests with name test_[description].cpp.
3. Within test_[description].cpp include the base unittest-class <unit_test.h> and all files required to write a test for the new feature.
4. Within test_[description].cpp create a class [Description]Test that inherits from UnitTest.
5. Within [Description]Test class declare the public method virtual bool run_tests().
6. Within [Description]Test class declare all private methods required to test the feature in question (test1(), test2(),...).
7. Within test_[description].cpp implement the run_tests() method where each test[1,2,...] will be run.
8. Within test_[description].cpp, implement the various tests.
9. At the bottom within test_[description].cpp declare the test.

ut_declare_test_c(test_[description], [Description]Test)


Here is a template:

#include <unit_test.h>
#include "[new feature].h"
...

class [Description]Test : public UnitTest
{
public:
virtual bool run_tests();

private:
bool test1();
bool test2();
...
};

bool [Description]Test::run_tests()
{
ut_run_test(test1)
ut_run_test(test2)
...

return (_tests_failed == 0);
}

bool [Description]Test::test1()
{
ut_[name of one of the unit test functions](...
ut_[name of one of the unit test functions](...
...

return true;
}

bool [Description]Test::test2()
{
ut_[name of one of the unit test functions](...
ut_[name of one of the unit test functions](...
...

return true;
}
...

ut_declare_test_c(test_[description], [Description]Test)


Note that ut_[name of one of the unit test functions] corresponds to one of the unittest functions defined within unit_test.h.

10. Within tests_main.h define the new test:

extern int test_[description](int argc, char *argv[]);

11. Within tests_main.c add description name, test function and option:

...
} tests[] = {
{...
{"[description]", test_[description], OPTION},
...
}


OPTION can be OPT_NOALLTEST,OPT_NOJIGTEST or 0 and is considered if within px4 shell one of the two commands are called:

pxh> tests all


or

pxh> tests jig


If a test has option OPT_NOALLTEST, then that test will be excluded when calling tests all. The same is true for OPT_NOJITEST when command test jig is called. Option 0 means that the test is never excluded, which is what most developer want to use.

12. Add the test test_[description].cpp to the CMakeLists.txt.

## Testing on the local machine

Run the complete list of GTest Unit Tests, GTest Functional Tests and SITL Unit Tests right from bash:

make tests


The individual GTest test binaries are in the build/px4_sitl_test/ directory, and can be run directly in most IDEs' debugger.

Filter to run only a subset of tests using a regular expression for the ctest name with this command:

make tests TESTFILTER=<filter expression>


For example:

• make tests TESTFILTER=unit only run GTest unit tests
• make tests TESTFILTER=sitl only run simulation tests
• make tests TESTFILTER=Attitude only run the AttitudeControl test