How is Raiden tested

Raiden tests are split into these categories. The following categories are ordered from the faster and easier to debug to the slower and harder to debug:

  • Unit tests: A collection of fast tests that do not require external services to run. Because these tests don’t require any services nor threads to run, they don’t have problems with flakyness and are easy to debug. They are located under raiden/tests/unit.

  • Property tests: These tests use randomly generated events. These tests are important ensure the system does not break when an unexpected series of events happen. Because of the architecture used by the project these tests are deterministic and do not require threads, therefore they are not flaky, but can be harder to debug because of their random nature. These tests are located under raiden/tests/fuzz.

  • Smoketest: This is a quick self contained test, that can be ran by a user or prior to the integration tests, to ensure the basics are working properly. It will start a private chain, the necessary infrastructure for the transport layer, deploy the smart contracts, start a Raiden instance and interact with the blockchain. This test is available as a command line command, and it’s entry point is under raiden/ui/

  • Integration tests: These are long running tests, that require external services to run. Integration tests are slower to run, they have to start a local private blockchain, a local transport infrastructure, multiple Raiden nodes, and the REST API for these nodes. A fresh set of smart contracts are deployed into this private chain, including Tokens and Raiden’s smart contracts. These tests are important to make sure Raiden will work as expected with the Ethereum clients, however because they orchestrate multiple systems they are considerably slower than the previous categories, susceptible to flakyness, and harder to debug. These tests are located under raiden/tests/integration.

  • Scenario tests: These tests run multiple times against the available testnets. They exercise the Raiden nodes through the available REST API, in the same way a user application would. These tests are important to test the system against real life conditions (using the internet). These tests use the scenario-player utility, and the scenarios are available under raiden/tests/scenarios.

Unit tests

Unit tests are deterministic, single threaded, and side-effect free. Because these tests don’t interact with other systems there isn’t any orchestration nor synchronization, so the tests cannot be flaky and are easy to debug.

This the preferred type of test for business logic, and should always be the preferred type of test to add to Raiden’s test suite.

Integration Tests

These tests exist to make sure that Raiden works properly with the other systems. Including the Ethereum client, Matrix, and the services for path finding and monitoring channels.

These tests are written in python and rely heavily on the pytest fixture system. This is necessary because these tests will run multiple Raiden nodes in a single process, exchange messages, and assert on the expected state of each individual node.

Here is an overview of the fixture system:

  • Configuration variables are defined in raiden/tests/fixtures/variables. This file contains the default settings for a test. These settings can be overwritten by the pytest.mark.paremetrize decorator to change the test environment. Good examples are the number_of_nodes which configures how many Raiden nodes should be started for the test, number_of_channels which configure how many channels each of these nodes should have at the start of the test.

  • The fixtures responsible to start a private chain are defined in raiden/tests/integration/fixtures/ These will start a new private chain, either geth or openethereum, with blockchain_number_of_nodes nodes. This private chain will have one prefunded account for each Raiden node, which allows these nodes to send on-chain transactions.

  • The fixtures responsible to deploy the smart contracts are defined in raiden/tests/integration/fixtures/ These fixtures depend on the private chain, and will deploy the necessary Raiden and Token Smart Contracts for the test.

  • The fixtures responsible to start the transport are defined in raiden/tests/integration/fixtures/ These fixtures will configure a local cluster of Matrix servers to run the tests.

  • The fixtures responsible to start the raiden nodes and open the initial channels are defined in raiden/tests/integration/fixtures/ . These fixtures depend on both the previous fixtures, the private blockchain, the smart contract, and the transport fixtures. The raiden network fixtures will then create the Raiden apps and open the necessary channels for the test.

Which of the above fixtures are used depends on the test function, and it is determined by pytest through its fixture system. A test that uses a raiden_network fixture will have a fresh set of matrix servers, a new private chain with newly deployed smart contracts, and running Raiden nodes with open channels, ready to do transfers.

Because of all the moving parts, there are a few important things that have to be kept in mind while writting a test:

  • If a failure is not expected, it should make the test fail. In order to achieve this all tests are executed by a call to raise_on_failure, which monitors all the Raiden nodes, and if any unexpected exception is raised on one of these nodes, the test fails. This works because all the spawned threads are monitored, and unhandled exceptions are always propagated in the code base.

  • Each individual system may hang for different reasons. The teardown of the blockchain can hang while waiting for the sockets to close, the integration test may hang because a bug (e.g. deadlocks, missing events, race conditions, etc.). Because it is important to be careful while watching for events and setting proper timeouts.