3.3.0 • Public • Published


Stub a browser environment and test your client-side code in node.js.


Example using mocha and should.

Given some client-side code


$(function() {

Setup, declare global dependencies, and test in node.js.


var benv = require('benv');
beforeEach(function(done) {
  benv.setup(function() {
      $: benv.require('../client/vendor/zepto.js', 'Zepto')
afterEach(function() {
describe('app.js', function() {
  it('renders Wat', function() {


Unit testing client side code in a browser is slow and hard to setup with CI. Wouldn't it be nice if we could just run it along-side our server-side tests? Benv is a library of test helpers that make it easy to require your client-side code in node.js and test it like any other node module.

See this blog post for details & inspiration.


benv.setup(callback, options)

Exposes a stubbed browser API into the node.js global namespace so the current process can act like a browser environment. The optional options are passed to jsdom.env. In particular, if your code makes ajax requests then you must pass {url:'http://hostname:port'} to avoid CORS errors.


Pass in a hash of common global client-side dependencies. For instance you may have a Backbone app that has a global App namespace and uses jQuery. This should be run after benv.setup b/c a lot of libraries assume the window object is already global.

  _: require('underscore'),
  jQuery: require('jquery'),
  $: require('jquery'),
  Backbone: require('backbone'),
  App: {}
### benv.teardown(clearDOM = false)
Clean up the globals exposed by `setup` and `expose` so other tests can run without being harmed.
Use `benv.teardown(true)` to remove references to `window``document`, and other DOM globals. This isn't enabled by default because a lot of libraries cache references to DOM globals and don't work so nicely when trying to clear globals and re-require these libs.
### benv.require(filename, globalVarName)
For non-commonjs wrapped libraries, benv.require will export the global variable that is generally attached to window. For instance [zepto]( doesn't adopt any module pattern but it does create a global `Zepto` variable.
var $ = benv.require('./client/vendor/zepto.js', 'Zepto');

benv.render(filename, data, callback)

Renders the html in a body tag of a template. Pass in the template's filename along with any data passed into the template. Benv is backed by jsdom and benv.render will remove any script tags so as to not accidentally run external javascript.


benv.render('./views/artwork.jade', {
  artwork: new Artwork({ title: 'Andy Warhol, Flowers' })
}, function() {
  $('body').html().should.include('Andy Warhol, Flowers');

Currently only supports .jade and .pug templates, but please contribute others :)

benv.requireWithJadeify(filename, varNames)

For those using jadeify when requiring client-side code that uses jadeify it will throw an error because require('template.jade') isn't valid node code.

If you defer your jade requires to run time e.g. var artworkTemplate = function() { return require('foo.jade').apply(this, arguments); } and use benv.requireWithJadeify('../client/artwork.js', ['artworkTemplate']) you can avoid this error and test the jadeified templates in node again.

benv.requireWithPugify(filename, varNames)

For those using pugify when requiring client-side code that uses pugify it will throw an error because require('template.pug') isn't valid node code.

If you defer your pug requires to run time e.g. var artworkTemplate = function() { return require('foo.pug').apply(this, arguments); } and use benv.requireWithPugify('../client/artwork.js', ['artworkTemplate']) you can avoid this error and test the pugified templates in node again.


Please fork the project and submit a pull request with tests. Install node modules npm install and run tests with npm test.



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