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Getting rid of DejaGnu: thoughts?

From: James Youngman
Subject: Getting rid of DejaGnu: thoughts?
Date: Sun, 18 Apr 2010 14:51:59 +0100

The current findutils test suite uses DejaGnu.   This is a test suite
support system written in Except, which is a specialization of Tcl.
If DejaGnu, Except and Tcl are not all present, the findutils build
scripts are simply skipped during "make check".   That is, no checking
is actually done.   This means that fewer people fully test findutils
than could be the case.   People not using a GNU/Linux system are
especially unlikely to run the tests.

This is not ideal.

Also, DejaGnu runs all the tests in series; on today's machines, we
can probably afford to run more of them in parallel.  Getting some
speed-up there makes it much more convenient to re-run the test suite
before every check-in.

I haven't got a specific candidate in mind for the replacement, though
Autotest looks attractive.   Does anybody have any suggestions?
Let's suppose for the sake of argument that my selection priorities

1. Must work on any system it is possible to build and run findutils
on (i.e. support for cross-compiled builds is not necessary)
2. Speed, speed, speed and speed.
3. Ideally it would also be possible to migrate the existing tests
either incrementally or automatically

I believe that (1) means the test suite needs to generate test suite
code in C, shell or a language for which we can include an interpreter
in the findutils package itself.


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