Peculiarities of Testing the Golang Applications: Advantages, Used Approaches, Specificity

Testing Golang Applications - Peculiarities of Testing the Golang Applications

Creating software products is not very easy. Even communities of the most skillful and advanced developers usually are not able to immediately create an application or a system which will function according to one established template and principle. It means that we can’t do without testing.

Creating the sets of test cases for software code is the best and the most efficient way to improve the quality and stability of work of a web product regardless of its focus and structure content.

What is Golang – Testing Golang applications

Golang, a specialized programming language (we will use a shortened form of “Go”) was created in 2009 by Google, but it became popular not so long ago.

Since a project group of Go Creators mentions in technical documentation of a product that this language allows us to boost different practices and since testing is perhaps the best practice for any developer, then the testing process in Go is a basic component of the tool, and it is delivered as they say “directly from the box”.

And actually, to repeatedly use available software testing service providers with the help of Golang, you should understand even the smallest capabilities of this language.

Its components:

  • A set of commands to start testing – go test;
  • The TestXxxt function which is executed in the process of classic testing;
  • A package of classic “testing” library.

For example, if you make a function to measure an area of a circle, it will look like in such way in Go programming language:

GO programming language function

Of course, for those who are used to work with classic assets and “wrappers” of testing this code can seem very long.

But it depends on your preferences: to work with third-party packages sometimes is easier and more interesting.

Also, the Go environment allows even a junior tester who has a task to test software in this environment to create the tests with a motive or without it.

Specialized Testing Frameworks in Go

It’s logical to suppose that in the process of work with a huge project, it’s better to use more powerful and up-to-date offshore software testing services.

Popular frameworks which can be easily connected to the test and be combined with the “go test” program command are already created for Go.

GoConvey which has a function to add DSL standard syntax for a group of BDD tests is very popular. Building on the example mentioned above, GoConvey library will make it have the following structure:

GoConvey library

GoConvey has a possibility to create numerous necessary “assertions”, even those which we use to compare more complex structures.

We can also mention that GoConvey has a modern web UI which can quickly monitor the changes in software code and re-record the tests, send user notifications, etc. According to numerous reviews on thematic forums, the GoConvey framework will make you like the testing process in Golang environment.

QA may also need the following extensions for Go: GoMega, Agouti, testify, Ginkgo.

So it’s clear that Go language is built on the following principle: the most important –“from the box”, other – for a token for a community.

Creating the Integration Tests

As we mentioned above, a group of integration tests which mean testing the whole system can become a problem in the process of analyzing a product’s functionality.

Usually, their usage means using complex scripts which are not always cross-platform, and this means that we waste precious time. But even in such a case, Go has its advantages.

Firstly, establish a build tag as a special condition as our created tests don’t always start but only in the cases when integration tests are mandatory.

So, let’s run it –

(a simple “go test” command won’t touch this text)

Later: we’d like to run our Doker container in the process of starting the test. Go has a whole group of libraries to do this (fsouza, for example).

To run the container, you should do 3 actions:

Comment: createOptions()  command allows us to return the primary data structure for creating a necessary container. Right here we mention the name of the container.

Now we just need to write a code which will wait for the “start” of a base and return us necessary IP address or a formatted part of “base” for future interaction with MySQL driver of Go language.

Checking HTTP Queries

Now we can play with HTTP queries – are they able to return necessary program errors, return the data, necessary titles, etc.

Of course, we can use a real service and send curl queries from there but it’s not very comfortable and look not very good. Go has a good method of checking necessary HTTP queries – a specialized net/HTTP/httptest package.

With the help of connecting the gin framework which is the basic http-framework, we can implement the necessary interface and also test random objects which are responsible for http.ResponseWriter query.

We get something like this:

We can also add calls to the test and test a current state – for example, add a client to a system and re-test a list.

And again, these actions can be performed for any type of stateful queries.

We can also mention that go test environment has specially build-in code-coverage for a group of operators.

The higher level of coverage is better than the lower one but present values may mislead you.

The Order of Tests in Golang

Firstly, we’d like to admit that we can’t rely only on order established at the before. Primarily, there is no order at all and all tests are just collected in a random order. Using special testing flags will help you to establish the order of performing the programmed tests but remember that you can’t be sure that they will be properly executed.

For example, if we have a command with “W” value, then we should primarily test the code lines with this letter.

Also, it’s quite popular to use T.Parallel() method for parallel testing. It’s right   – firstly not-parallel tests start to work and then parallel, after establishing particular conditions (so-called “test flags”).

The main thing is that coverage of tests must be completely independent of each other. If your created test function has premises that can’t be performed, it means that you need to create other test function. It is very easy and clear, no problems occur.

Technical parameters of executing additional established tasks before test function on Go will work:

  • Move necessary parameters in a necessary test environment;
  • Use package the init() function. This step will allow us to execute the function only 1 time in the process of testing;
  • Use the testmain() function which will operate additional settings while preparing the work of test functions;
  • Combine all mentioned parameters as you wish (in other ways, try different ways).

Important: beginning from Go 1.7 package version, we can operate subtests where you can regulate the order of compilator’s executing of subtests.

Black-box Testing with the Help of Golang

Usually, all tests inside Go are executed in the same package as the tested software code and this allows us to operate internal details of special implementation. To perform so-called black-box testing, we need to use package with «__test» suffix which can be compiled in a building package.


A client can use a black-box template as a special connection to stop the cycles of application base import.

For a particular group of tests, you need to perform special context. For example, a test must include a special external command which is connected to a particular file or variable. And the possibilities of Go language allow us to cope with problems and easily miss these tests, as in our case:

Possibilities of the go test package are not limited, and with its help, we can run whole groups of assets as a good example. Built-in parameters of standardisation allow us to understand the structure of syntax and determine its position inside a generated document or template.

At the end of the chapter, we’d like to mention the process of code coverage and profiling method, 2 functions to support the functionality of test environment tools.

For those who start studying Go programming language in the sense of usage its improvements for application testing, it’s very important to understand and implement such internal-system test utilities as testing/iotest net/http/httptest and testing/quick.

What we can summarize:

  • Permanently improve the performance, Go allows us to do this. Reach any abstractions and techniques and your code will be much more successful;
  • Tuneit can be performed from high-level abstractions;
  • Using Big O is very important as it allows us to completely test the application;
  • You don’t need to waste time on optimising a simple, one-time script.


So it is clear that Go programming language does not only allow us to create necessary groups of unit tests but also opens new technological capabilities to manipulate with complex acceptance and integration tests.

The example we analyzed today can be a demonstration what we can do inside the Go environment.

Of course, different web platforms need different available scripts but our example allow us to answer all existing questions completely and it is a good example of the way Go accelerates the cycle for the process of integration testing.