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README

Tcl Test Suite
--------------

RCS: @(#) $Id: README,v 1.2 1998/09/14 18:40:07 stanton Exp $

This directory contains a set of validation tests for the Tcl
commands.  Each of the files whose name ends in ".test" is
intended to fully exercise one or a few Tcl commands.  The
commands tested by a given file are listed in the first line
of the file.

You can run the tests in two ways:
    (a) type "make test" in ../unix; this will run all of the tests.
    (b) start up tcltest in this directory, then "source" the test
        file (for example, type "source parse.test").  To run all
	of the tests, type "source all".
In either case no output will be generated if all goes well, except
for a listing of the tests..  If there are errors then additional
messages will appear in the format described below.  Note: don't
run the tests as superuser, since this will cause several of the tests
to fail.

The rest of this file provides additional information on the
features of the testing environment.

This approach to testing was designed and initially implemented
by Mary Ann May-Pumphrey of Sun Microsystems.  Many thanks to
her for donating her work back to the public Tcl release.

Definitions file:
-----------------

The file "defs" defines a collection of procedures and variables
used to run the tests.  It is read in automatically by each of the
.test files if needed, but once it has been read once it will not
be read again by the .test files.  If you change defs while running
tests you'll have to "source" it by hand to load its new contents.

Test output:
------------

Normally, output only appears when there are errors.  However, if
the variable VERBOSE is set to 1 then tests will be run in "verbose"
mode and output will be generated for each test regardless of
whether it succeeded or failed.  Test output consists of the
following information:

    - the test identifier (which can be used to locate the test code
	    in the .test file)
    - a brief description of the test
    - the contents of the test code
    - the actual results produced by the tests
    - a "PASSED" or "FAILED" message
    - the expected results (if the test failed)

You can set VERBOSE either interactively (after the defs file has been
read in), or you can change the default value in "defs".

Selecting tests for execution:
------------------------------

Normally, all the tests in a file are run whenever the file is
"source"d.  However, you can select a specific set of tests using
the global variable TESTS.  This variable contains a pattern;  any
test whose identifier matches TESTS will be run.  For example,
the following interactive command causes all of the "for" tests in
groups 2 and 4 to be executed:

    set TESTS {for-[24]*}

TESTS defaults to *, but you can change the default in "defs" if
you wish.

Saving keystrokes:
------------------

A convenience procedure named "dotests" is included in file
"defs".  It takes two arguments--the name of the test file (such
as "parse.test"), and a pattern selecting the tests you want to
execute.  It sets TESTS to the second argument, calls "source" on
the file specified in the first argument, and restores TESTS to
its pre-call value at the end.

Batch vs. interactive execution:
--------------------------------

The tests can be run in either batch or interactive mode.  Batch
mode refers to using I/O redirection from a UNIX shell.  For example,
the following command causes the tests in the file named "parse.test"
to be executed:

    tclTest < parse.test > parse.test.results

Users who want to execute the tests in this fashion need to first
ensure that the file "defs" has proper values for the global
variables that control the testing environment (VERBOSE and TESTS).
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