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Real Life Usage

In real life scenarios, we not only use the user interface of Smocker but also its API. Smocker's API offers all the primitives to orchestrate your mocking environment in a fully automated way.

At OVHcloud for example, Smocker is used in complement of Venom, an integration testing framework. Venom provides primitives to create HTTP calls, manipulate databases and message queues, and much more. It also provides a powerful context for writing assertions. This is completely optional though, simple shell scripts would work just fine, although they are less expressive and more complex to write.


In this example, we will consider an hotel reservation system.

The system infrastructure is composed of:

  • a Reservations microservice, managing the reservations,
  • a Users microservice, managing the customers of the hotel,
  • a Gateway to make them communicate together.

We will test the following use case on the Reservations microservice:

In this use case, the client makes a call through the gateway to the Reservations service to retrieve the booking with ID "1". The Reservations service makes a call through the gateway to the Users service to retrieve the data of the users associated to the booking.

The Gateway is central in the communication between our two services and we cannot test Reservations without indirectly making a call to Users. Since the service we want to test is Reservations, we want a solution to mock the calls to the Users service. That's what Smocker will allow us to do.

Now let's see what we can do if we replace the Gateway by a Smocker instance:

As you can see, by using Smocker instead of the Gateway, we can completely remove the Users service without affecting the behavior of Reservations.


If we assume that our API Gateway uses an HTTP header to know how to redirect calls between services, we need to define some variables:

  • Gateway Header: X-Service-Name
    This is the header that will be used by the gateway to know where to forward the calls it receives. For instance, if the gateway receives a call with the header X-Service-Name: reservations, it will know the calls needs to be forwarded to the reservations service.
  • Reservations Service Token: reservations
    This is the token of our Reservations service. It's a value that can be used with the X-Service-Name header.
  • Users Service Token: users
    This is the token of our Users service. It's a value that can be used with the X-Service-Name header.

The services APIs and types are defined below.

Reservations Service


type Reservation struct {
ID int64 `json:"id"`
RoomNumber int64 `json:"room_number"`
Users []int64 `json:"users"`
EntryDate time.Time `json:"entry_date"`
ReleaseDate time.Time `json:"release_date"`


MethodURLRequest Parameter TypeResponse Example


"id": 1,
"room_number": 1,
"users": [1, 2, 3],
"entry_date": "2020-01-01T18:00:00Z",
"release_date": "2020-01-02T12:00:00Z"

Users Service


type User struct {
ID int64 `json:"id"`
Name string `json:"name"`


MethodURLRequest BodyResponse Example


{ "ids": [...] }
{ "id": 1, "name": "User 1" }

Docker Compose File

Let's synthesize this in a docker-compose file:

version: "3"
- 8080:8080
- 8081:8081

image: postgres
- POSTGRES_DB: database
- 8082:5432

image: reservations
POSTGRES_DSN: pgsql://user:password@(db:5432)/database
GATEWAY_ADDR: http://smocker:8080

As you can see, we do not define the users service since we intend to mock it.

We also set Smocker as the gateway API on the reservations service using the GATEWAY_ADDR environment variable. This could be done using configuration files or any other method.

The important thing is to make sure that your services calls go through Smocker.

Test Files

Now that we can launch our services, let's set up the Venom test.

Directory Structure


Database Fixture

Venom has a dbfixtures executor which allows you to populate a database using YAML files.

  • reservations.yml (the filename will determine the table name in the database, so a "reservations" table will be created)
- id: 1
room_number: 1
- 1
- 2
entry_date: "2020-01-01T18:00:00Z"
release_date: "2020-01-02T12:00:00Z"

For our purpose, we created a booking in the reservations table.



Let's go to the interesting part, the mocks definition.

  • mocks.yml
- request:
X-Service-Name: reservations
host: https://reservations:8080

- request:
method: POST
path: /search
X-Service-Name: users
matcher: ShouldEqualJSON
value: >
{ "ids": [1,2] }
Content-Type: application/json
body: >
"id": 1,
"name": "User 1"
"id": 2,
"name": "User 2"

As you can see in the file, we have defined two mocks:

  • A proxy mock on all requests which have reservations as X-Service-Name header,
  • A response mock on POST /search requests which have users as X-Service-Name header
    (in our case, the body's matcher is redundant and could be removed as we will only make one call).


And finally, the Venom test.

  • test.yml
name: Retrieve Reservation

gw: localhost:8080
mockserver: localhost:8081
dsn: user:password@(localhost:8082)/database

- name: Get reservation with ID "1"
# Init
- type: dbfixtures
database: postgres
dsn: "{{.dsn}}"
- fixtures/reservations.yml

- type: http
method: POST
url: http://{{.mockserver}}/sessions?name=test1
- result.statuscode ShouldEqual 200

- type: http
method: POST
url: http://{{.mockserver}}/mocks
bodyFile: ./mocks.yml
- result.statuscode ShouldEqual 200

# Get Reservation
- type: http
method: GET
url: http://{{.gw}}/reservation/1
X-Service-Name: reservations
- result.statuscode ShouldEqual 200
- ShouldEqual 1
- result.bodyjson.room_number ShouldEqual 1
- result.bodyjson.users.users0 ShouldEqual "User 1"
- result.bodyjson.users.users1 ShouldEqual "User 2"
- result.bodyjson.entry_date ShouldEqual "2020-01-01T18:00:00Z"
- result.bodyjson.release_date ShouldEqual "2020-01-02T12:00:00Z"

To simply describe the above test, Venom will:

  • Initialize the database using the reservations.yml fixture file,
  • Create a Smocker session named test1 (optional, because Smocker automatically creates a session on the first call),
  • Set the mocks into Smocker using the mocks.yml file,
  • Call the reservation API through the gateway API (Smocker in this case), and make assertions on the result.
    We chose to make the initial call through Smocker in order to:
    • Show an example of a proxy mock,
    • Display the Venom call in Smocker's history.
      If we had made the call directly on the reservations service, we would only have the call to the users service on Smocker's history.

For real Venom tests examples, we invite you to check Smocker's test suite.