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Start unit-testing your VFP codebase – it is not too late, never!

In the summer of 2004, Visionpace announced an open-source project called FoxUnit, based on the Kent Beck book, "Test Driven Development by Example".

Visionpace - FoxUnit              VFPX - FoxUnit

As an open-source project, it's supported not only by Visionpace developers, but also by other developers using it with full source code. The documentation still is sparse, so it can be tricky to get started. Go and read the rest of Andrew MacNeill's Using FoxUnit for Test-Driven Development document here http://www.aksel.com/whitepapers/FoxUnit.htm


Unit-Testing is nothing new to software developers. In fact, the FoxUnit Unit-Testing application has been around for a while. Today it can be said that it is a pretty stable and reliable VFP solution. The question is:

Why is the application of FoxUnit so uncommon amongst VFP developers?

I always had some good excuses not to use TDD (test driven development) at all. Some of them stemmed from my first experiences I made using FoxUnit a long time ago…

Unit-Testing in General

  • is not easily adopted
  • is time consuming to implement
  • needs additional maintenance
  • can only cover a part of all testing issues

FoxUnit Especially

  • is not documented very well
  • seems to be an ongoing, unfinished development effort
  • does not integrate with VFP very well
  • uses VFP scripts that require a lot of manual maintenance
  • does not support mocking natively
  • does not offer any professional support

…just to name a few. But, wait, some of the things mentioned above got better over time!


Some Facts About FoxUnit (27.07.2014)

FoxUnit is a VFPX project since 2012(?) Thus, there should be a viable, supporting community today, and hopefully in the future, too!

The FoxUnit documentation still is pretty sparse. But, hey(!), you are always welcome to change that :-)

FoxUnit is a pure developer tool. Thus, there is not much written documentation (as usual). Today we still have to visit the source code to get the best out of it.

The good thing about the source code is, that you don't have to study all of it to get started. You don't have to know all about the inner workings of the GUI-related classes immediately. It is enough to concentrate on the behavioral parts of the implementation and the provided templates (VFP scripts) to get started. I will show you what's important and what is not in a later part of this thread.

<to be continued…>

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