# /ni:mi:/ - Snapshot testing for Elixir ExUnit


**Note:** This README tracks the `main` branch. See the HexDocs linked below for documentation for the latest release.


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Snapshot tests assert that some expression matches a reference value.
It's like an ExUnit `assert`, except that the reference value is
managed for you by Mneme.

Mneme follows in the footsteps of existing snapshot testing libraries
like [Insta]( (Rust), [expect-test](
(OCaml), and [assert_value](
(Elixir). Instead of simple value or string comparison, however, Mneme
leans heavily into pattern matching.

## Example

Let's say you've written a test for a function that removes even
numbers from a list:

test "drop_evens/1 should remove all even numbers from an enum" do
  auto_assert drop_evens(1..10)

  auto_assert drop_evens([])

  auto_assert drop_evens([:a, :b, 2, :c])

The first time you run this test, you'll see interactive prompts for
each call to `auto_assert` showing a diff and asking if you'd like to
accept the generated pattern. After accepting them, your test is

test "drop_evens/1 should remove all even numbers from an enum" do
  auto_assert [1, 3, 5, 7, 9] <- drop_evens(1..10)

  auto_assert [] <- drop_evens([])

  auto_assert [:a, :b, :c] <- drop_evens([:a, :b, 2, :c])

The next time you run this test, you won't receive a prompt and these
will act (almost) like any other assertion. If the result of the call
ever changes, you'll be prompted again and can choose to update the
test or reject it and let it fail.

With a few exceptions, `auto_assert/1` acts very similarly to a normal
`assert`. See the [macro docs](
for a list of differences.

## Quick start

1.  Add `:mneme` do your deps in `mix.exs`:

    defp deps do
        {:mneme, ">= 0.0.0", only: :test}

2.  Add `:mneme` to your `:import_deps` in `.formatter.exs`:

      import_deps: [:mneme],
      inputs: ["{mix,.formatter}.exs", "{config,lib,test}/**/*.{ex,exs}"]

3.  Start Mneme right after you start ExUnit in `test/test_helper.exs`:


4.  Add `use Mneme` wherever you `use ExUnit.Case`:

    defmodule MyTest do
      use ExUnit.Case, async: true
      use Mneme

      test "arithmetic" do
        # use auto_assert instead of ExUnit's assert - run this test
        # and delight in all the typing you don't have to do
        auto_assert 2 + 2

## Match patterns

Mneme tries to generate match patterns that are equivalent to what a
human (or at least a nice LLM) would write. Basic data types like
strings, numbers, lists, tuples, etc. will be as you would expect.

Some values, however, do not have a literal representation that can be
used in a pattern match. Pids are such an example. For those, guards
are used:

auto_assert self()

# after running the test and accepting the change
auto_assert pid when is_pid(pid) <- self()

Additionally, local variables can be found and pinned as a part of the
pattern. This keeps the number of hard-coded values down, reducing the
likelihood that tests have to be updated in the future.

test "create_post/1 creates a new post with valid attrs", %{user: user} do
  valid_attrs = %{title: "my_post", author: user}

  auto_assert create_post(valid_attrs)

# after running the test
test "create_post/1 creates a new post with valid attrs", %{user: user} do
  valid_attrs = %{title: "my_post", author: user}

  auto_assert {:ok, %Post{title: "my_post", author: ^user}} <- create_post(valid_attrs)

In many cases, multiple valid patterns will be possible. Usually, the
"simplest" pattern will be selected by default when you are prompted,
but you can cycle through the options as well.

### Non-exhaustive list of special cases

  * Pinned variables are generated by default if a value is equal to a
    variable in scope.

  * Date and time values are written using their sigil representation.

  * Struct patterns only include fields that are different from the
    struct defaults.

  * Structs defined by Ecto schemas exclude primary keys, association
    foreign keys, and auto generated fields like `:inserted_at` and
    `:updated_at`. This is because these fields are often randomly
    generated and would fail on subsequent tests.

## Formatting

Mneme uses [`Rewrite`]( to update
source code, formatting that code before saving the file. Currently,
the Elixir formatter and `FreedomFormatter` are supported. **If you do
not use a formatter, the first auto-assertion will reformat the entire

## Continuous Integration

In a CI environment, Mneme will not attempt to prompt and update any
assertions, but will instead fail any tests that would update. This
behavior is enabled by the `CI` environment variable, which is set by
convention by many continuous integration providers.

export CI=true

## Editor support

Guides for optional editor integration can be found here:

  * [VS Code](

## Acknowledgements

Special thanks to:

  * [_What if writing tests was a joyful experience?_](,
    from the Jane Street Tech Blog, for inspiring this library.

  * [Sourceror](, a library that
    makes complex code modifications simple.

  * [Rewrite](, which provides the
    diff functionality present in Mneme.

  * [Owl](, which makes it much easier
    to build a pretty CLI.

  * [Insta](, a snapshot testing tool for Rust,
    whose great documentation provided an excellent reference for
    snapshot testing.

  * [assert_value](,
    an existing Elixir project that provides similar functionality.
    Thank you for paving the way!

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## Configuration

See the [full module documentation]( for configuration options.