Functional Testing of ASP.NET core 2.1 MVC Application

1 minute read ~

In ASP.NET core 2.1, setting up functional testing project got much easier with the release of Microsoft.AspNetCore.Mvc.Testing nuget package. In this post we are going to setup a functional test project.


To follow this tutorial you should have-

  1. .NET Core 2.1 RC1 SDK and
  2. VS Code or Microsoft Visual Studio 2017 v15.7 Preview 1 or newer, installed on your system

Create test project

Create a folder and name it HelloWorld, because why not :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:. Open PowerShell window inside the folder (Shift + right click anywhere inside the folder and select Open PowerShell window here) and create a solution:

dotnet new sln

Now create a basic MVC project inside src directory and xunit project inside tests directory:

dotnet new mvc -o .\src\HelloWorld.Mvc
dotnet new xunit -o .\tests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests

Add those two project to the solution:

dotnet sln add .\src\HelloWorld.Mvc\HelloWorld.Mvc.csproj
dotnet sln add .\tests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests.csproj

Reference the MVC project form the FunctionalTests project:

dotnet add .\tests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests.csproj reference .\src\HelloWorld.Mvc\HelloWorld.Mvc.csproj

Write functional Test

Add Microsoft.AspNetCore.Mvc.Testing to the functional test project:

dotnet add .\tests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests.csproj package Microsoft.AspNetCore.Mvc.Testing -v 2.1.0-rc1-final

Now open the project in VS Code or Visual Studio 2017 15.7 Preview 1 or newer and create a new class inside HelloWorld.FunctionalTests project and name it HomePageShould.cs

using HelloWorld.Mvc;
using Microsoft.AspNetCore.Mvc.Testing;
using System.Net;
using System.Net.Http;
using System.Threading.Tasks;
using Xunit;

namespace HelloWorld.FunctionalTests
    public class HomePageShould : IClassFixture<WebApplicationFactory<Startup>>
        private readonly HttpClient _client;

        public HomePageShould(WebApplicationFactory<Startup> factory)
            _client = factory.CreateClient();

        public async Task ReturnHttpStatusCodeOk()
            var response = await _client.GetAsync("/");

            Assert.Equal(HttpStatusCode.OK, response.StatusCode);

Run the test

Now run the test. It should fail with the error message

Message: System.IO.FileNotFoundException : Could not load file or assembly ‘Microsoft.AspNetCore, Version=, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=adb9793829ddae60’. The system cannot find the file specified.

To resolve it, add Microsoft.AspNetCore.App nuget package to the test project

dotnet add .\tests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests.csproj package Microsoft.AspNetCore.App -v 2.1.0-rc1-final

Now run the test from Test>Run>All Tests (Visual Studio 2017) or from PowerShell-

dotnet test .\tests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests\HelloWorld.FunctionalTests.csproj

You should see green tick of happiness.

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