Plone test development with robotframework and RIDE

Running acceptance tests in Plone

Test driven development can be a pain. If you are working with Zope and Plone most of time gets consumed starting up Zope running setUp method and rolling back transaction in tearDown method.

So why not use a running already set-up instance for test-development? Today I will show you how to reach that goal. It’s not as hard as it seems.

Use buildout

Of course we use buildout to get a custom script which we can run through RIDE. I configured a new pybot script, the basic idea has been implemented in plone.act [1] module already.

# ...
parts =
    # ...

recipe = zc.recipe.egg
eggs =
    plone.act [test]

initialization =
    import os
    os.environ.setdefault("ZSERVER_PORT", "8080")
    os.environ.setdefault("PLONE_SITE_ID", "Plone")
    os.environ.setdefault("SITE_OWNER_NAME", "admin")
    os.environ.setdefault("SITE_OWNER_PASSWORD", "admin")


RIDE is the frontend for test-development using robotframework library. Setup is a pain if you want to run it on OSX. I saw a click-by-click installation of windows users, but this is not what we want to cover here today…


RIDE requires wxPython 2.8 - it is possible to use 2.9 but it’s not really stable. You’ll end up in segmentation fault errors. By deleting your ~/.robotframework/ride/settings.cfg file, you can by-pass these errors with the disadvantage of loosing all your settings. Read more about setting up RIDE on my previous post here.

  1. Open your test folder in ride by using the File menu
  2. Modify to load SITE_OWNER_NAME and SITE_OWNER_PASSWORD from environment.
  3. Run bin/pybot --argumentfile src/plone.act/.../keywords.txt --include [tag] [testfile]
  4. Add the same configuration to RIDE custom script.
  5. Click on the Start Button in RIDE

What is not working

RIDE’s configuration Skip tests with these tags and Only run tests with these tags did not work for me, but you can add --include or --exclude as arguments for custom script.

[1]plone.act was renamed to some time ago.


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