Welcome!

Microservices Expo Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Zakia Bouachraoui

Related Topics: Microservices Expo, Industrial IoT

Microservices Expo: Article

ESB Testing Strategies with Mule

Will it break anything?

To be able to do anything useful, an ESB must be configured with all sorts of parameters, from endpoint connection URIs to message transformation scripts to content-based routing definitions. Moreover, ESBs like Mule can host custom components, which will process messages and perform user-specific actions on them.

Deploying a new version of an ESB configuration raises the question of whether it will break anything. How can we build confidence that everything will be just fine? If unit testing did it for standard software development, what can it do in the realm of the ESB? Since ESBs are becoming increasingly familiar in corporate IT, getting concrete answers is of interest to more and more people.

This article details the testing strategies I employ for Mule ESB-driven projects, which I think contain elements that could be generalized to other platforms. I am certain that readers will have strategies of their own and I welcome their comments. I am also convinced that ESB vendors have their own approaches, sometimes generic, often proprietary, and that they are worth following if you use their tool. This article does not cover the subject of SOA testing strategies, which is already thoroughly discussed in the industry.

Level One: Unit Testing - Components and Transformers
Whether they are compiled or scripted, components can easily be unit tested. Provided they have been correctly initialized, unit testing them amounts to receiving an expected response for a known input. Correctly initializing a component consists of calling its lifecycle methods, if any, for compiled ones or establishing the correct environment context for scripted ones. Some components are more complex in the sense that they can be aware of the event context in which they process a message payload or need to connect to other end points. Mule's ESB functional test library (mule-tests-functional-xyz.jar) offers a variety of helpers, mostly in the form of subclasses of JUnit TestCase to establish test event context or temporary end points, which let us test this kind of component thoroughly. For example, here is an example for testing an event-aware component:

import org.mule.impl.RequestContext;
import org.mule.tck.AbstractMuleTestCase;
public class EventAwareComponentTestCase extends AbstractMuleTestCase {
protected static final String TEST_PAYLOAD = "test.foo.payload";
public EventAwareComponentTestCase() {
super();
}
@Override
protected void doSetUp() throws Exception {
RequestContext.setEvent(getTestEvent(TEST_PAYLOAD));
}
@Override
protected void doTearDown() throws Exception {
RequestContext.setEvent(null);
}
}

Transformers are very similar to components as far as testing is concerned. For the ones that are unaware of their ESB context, unit testing is straightforward; for others, Mule testing tools will come in handy. Note that at this level, it is the transformer that is tested and not how well its configuration makes the expected transformation on a particular message (this is discussed later).

More Stories By David Dossot

David Dossot has worked as a software engineer and architect for more than 14 years. He is a co-author of Mule in Action and is the project despot of the JCR Transport and a member of the Mule Community Committee. He is the project lead of NxBRE, an open source business rules engine for the .NET platform (selected for O'Reilly's Windows Developer Power Tools). He is also a judge for the Jolt Product Excellence Awards and has written several articles for SD Magazine. He holds a Production Systems Engineering Diploma from ESSTIN.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Microservices Articles
Lori MacVittie is a subject matter expert on emerging technology responsible for outbound evangelism across F5's entire product suite. MacVittie has extensive development and technical architecture experience in both high-tech and enterprise organizations, in addition to network and systems administration expertise. Prior to joining F5, MacVittie was an award-winning technology editor at Network Computing Magazine where she evaluated and tested application-focused technologies including app secu...
Using new techniques of information modeling, indexing, and processing, new cloud-based systems can support cloud-based workloads previously not possible for high-throughput insurance, banking, and case-based applications. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, John Newton, CTO, Founder and Chairman of Alfresco, described how to scale cloud-based content management repositories to store, manage, and retrieve billions of documents and related information with fast and linear scalability. He addresse...
Adding public cloud resources to an existing application can be a daunting process. The tools that you currently use to manage the software and hardware outside the cloud aren’t always the best tools to efficiently grow into the cloud. All of the major configuration management tools have cloud orchestration plugins that can be leveraged, but there are also cloud-native tools that can dramatically improve the efficiency of managing your application lifecycle. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, ...
The now mainstream platform changes stemming from the first Internet boom brought many changes but didn’t really change the basic relationship between servers and the applications running on them. In fact, that was sort of the point. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Gordon Haff, senior cloud strategy marketing and evangelism manager at Red Hat, will discuss how today’s workloads require a new model and a new platform for development and execution. The platform must handle a wide range of rec...
Containers and Kubernetes allow for code portability across on-premise VMs, bare metal, or multiple cloud provider environments. Yet, despite this portability promise, developers may include configuration and application definitions that constrain or even eliminate application portability. In this session we'll describe best practices for "configuration as code" in a Kubernetes environment. We will demonstrate how a properly constructed containerized app can be deployed to both Amazon and Azure ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that DatacenterDynamics has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. DatacenterDynamics is a brand of DCD Group, a global B2B media and publishing company that develops products to help senior professionals in the world's most ICT dependent organizations make risk-based infrastructure and capacity decisions.
Discussions of cloud computing have evolved in recent years from a focus on specific types of cloud, to a world of hybrid cloud, and to a world dominated by the APIs that make today's multi-cloud environments and hybrid clouds possible. In this Power Panel at 17th Cloud Expo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists addressed the importance of customers being able to use the specific technologies they need, through environments and ecosystems that expose their APIs to make true ...
In his keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Sheng Liang, co-founder and CEO of Rancher Labs, discussed the technological advances and new business opportunities created by the rapid adoption of containers. With the success of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and various open source technologies used to build private clouds, cloud computing has become an essential component of IT strategy. However, users continue to face challenges in implementing clouds, as older technologies evolve and newer ones like Docker c...
CloudEXPO New York 2018, colocated with DXWorldEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
DevOpsSummit New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DXWorldEXPO within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term.