Mocking Reference

This page lists the facilities provided by GoogleTest for creating and working with mock objects. To use them, include the header gmock/gmock.h.

Macros

GoogleTest defines the following macros for working with mocks.

MOCK_METHOD

MOCK_METHOD(return_type,method_name, (args...));
MOCK_METHOD(return_type,method_name, (args...), (specs...));

Defines a mock method method_name with arguments (args...) and return type return_type within a mock class.

The parameters of MOCK_METHOD mirror the method declaration. The optional fourth parameter specs... is a comma-separated list of qualifiers. The following qualifiers are accepted:

Qualifier Meaning
const Makes the mocked method a const method. Required if overriding a const method.
override Marks the method with override. Recommended if overriding a virtual method.
noexcept Marks the method with noexcept. Required if overriding a noexcept method.
Calltype(calltype) Sets the call type for the method, for example Calltype(STDMETHODCALLTYPE). Useful on Windows.
ref(qualifier) Marks the method with the given reference qualifier, for example ref(&) or ref(&&). Required if overriding a method that has a reference qualifier.

Note that commas in arguments prevent MOCK_METHOD from parsing the arguments correctly if they are not appropriately surrounded by parentheses. See the following example:

class MyMock {
 public:
  // The following 2 lines will not compile due to commas in the arguments:
  MOCK_METHOD(std::pair<bool, int>, GetPair, ());              // Error!
  MOCK_METHOD(bool, CheckMap, (std::map<int, double>, bool));  // Error!

  // One solution - wrap arguments that contain commas in parentheses:
  MOCK_METHOD((std::pair<bool, int>), GetPair, ());
  MOCK_METHOD(bool, CheckMap, ((std::map<int, double>), bool));

  // Another solution - use type aliases:
  using BoolAndInt = std::pair<bool, int>;
  MOCK_METHOD(BoolAndInt, GetPair, ());
  using MapIntDouble = std::map<int, double>;
  MOCK_METHOD(bool, CheckMap, (MapIntDouble, bool));
};

MOCK_METHOD must be used in the public: section of a mock class definition, regardless of whether the method being mocked is public, protected, or private in the base class.

EXPECT_CALL

EXPECT_CALL(mock_object,method_name(matchers...))

Creates an expectation that the method method_name of the object mock_object is called with arguments that match the given matchers matchers.... EXPECT_CALL must precede any code that exercises the mock object.

The parameter matchers... is a comma-separated list of matchers that correspond to each argument of the method method_name. The expectation will apply only to calls of method_name whose arguments match all of the matchers. If (matchers...) is omitted, the expectation behaves as if each argument’s matcher were a wildcard matcher (_). See the Matchers Reference for a list of all built-in matchers.

The following chainable clauses can be used to modify the expectation, and they must be used in the following order:

EXPECT_CALL(mock_object, method_name(matchers...))
    .With(multi_argument_matcher)  // Can be used at most once
    .Times(cardinality)            // Can be used at most once
    .InSequence(sequences...)      // Can be used any number of times
    .After(expectations...)        // Can be used any number of times
    .WillOnce(action)              // Can be used any number of times
    .WillRepeatedly(action)        // Can be used at most once
    .RetiresOnSaturation();        // Can be used at most once

See details for each modifier clause below.

With

.With(multi_argument_matcher)

Restricts the expectation to apply only to mock function calls whose arguments as a whole match the multi-argument matcher multi_argument_matcher.

GoogleTest passes all of the arguments as one tuple into the matcher. The parameter multi_argument_matcher must thus be a matcher of type Matcher<std::tuple<A1, ..., An>>, where A1, ..., An are the types of the function arguments.

For example, the following code sets the expectation that my_mock.SetPosition() is called with any two arguments, the first argument being less than the second:

using ::testing::_;
using ::testing::Lt;
...
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, SetPosition(_, _))
    .With(Lt());

GoogleTest provides some built-in matchers for 2-tuples, including the Lt() matcher above. See Multi-argument Matchers.

The With clause can be used at most once on an expectation and must be the first clause.

Times

.Times(cardinality)

Specifies how many times the mock function call is expected.

The parameter cardinality represents the number of expected calls and can be one of the following, all defined in the ::testing namespace:

Cardinality Meaning
AnyNumber() The function can be called any number of times.
AtLeast(n) The function call is expected at least n times.
AtMost(n) The function call is expected at most n times.
Between(m, n) The function call is expected between m and n times, inclusive.
Exactly(n) or n The function call is expected exactly n times. If n is 0, the call should never happen.

If the Times clause is omitted, GoogleTest infers the cardinality as follows:

The Times clause can be used at most once on an expectation.

InSequence

.InSequence(sequences...)

Specifies that the mock function call is expected in a certain sequence.

The parameter sequences... is any number of Sequence objects. Expected calls assigned to the same sequence are expected to occur in the order the expectations are declared.

For example, the following code sets the expectation that the Reset() method of my_mock is called before both GetSize() and Describe(), and GetSize() and Describe() can occur in any order relative to each other:

using ::testing::Sequence;
Sequence s1, s2;
...
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, Reset())
    .InSequence(s1, s2);
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, GetSize())
    .InSequence(s1);
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, Describe())
    .InSequence(s2);

The InSequence clause can be used any number of times on an expectation.

See also the InSequence class.

After

.After(expectations...)

Specifies that the mock function call is expected to occur after one or more other calls.

The parameter expectations... can be up to five Expectation or ExpectationSet objects. The mock function call is expected to occur after all of the given expectations.

For example, the following code sets the expectation that the Describe() method of my_mock is called only after both InitX() and InitY() have been called.

using ::testing::Expectation;
...
Expectation init_x = EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, InitX());
Expectation init_y = EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, InitY());
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, Describe())
    .After(init_x, init_y);

The ExpectationSet object is helpful when the number of prerequisites for an expectation is large or variable, for example:

using ::testing::ExpectationSet;
...
ExpectationSet all_inits;
// Collect all expectations of InitElement() calls
for (int i = 0; i < element_count; i++) {
  all_inits += EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, InitElement(i));
}
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, Describe())
    .After(all_inits);  // Expect Describe() call after all InitElement() calls

The After clause can be used any number of times on an expectation.

WillOnce

.WillOnce(action)

Specifies the mock function’s actual behavior when invoked, for a single matching function call.

The parameter action represents the action that the function call will perform. See the Actions Reference for a list of built-in actions.

The use of WillOnce implicitly sets a cardinality on the expectation when Times is not specified. See Times.

Each matching function call will perform the next action in the order declared. For example, the following code specifies that my_mock.GetNumber() is expected to be called exactly 3 times and will return 1, 2, and 3 respectively on the first, second, and third calls:

using ::testing::Return;
...
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, GetNumber())
    .WillOnce(Return(1))
    .WillOnce(Return(2))
    .WillOnce(Return(3));

The WillOnce clause can be used any number of times on an expectation.

WillRepeatedly

.WillRepeatedly(action)

Specifies the mock function’s actual behavior when invoked, for all subsequent matching function calls. Takes effect after the actions specified in the WillOnce clauses, if any, have been performed.

The parameter action represents the action that the function call will perform. See the Actions Reference for a list of built-in actions.

The use of WillRepeatedly implicitly sets a cardinality on the expectation when Times is not specified. See Times.

If any WillOnce clauses have been specified, matching function calls will perform those actions before the action specified by WillRepeatedly. See the following example:

using ::testing::Return;
...
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, GetName())
    .WillRepeatedly(Return("John Doe"));  // Return "John Doe" on all calls

EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, GetNumber())
    .WillOnce(Return(42))        // Return 42 on the first call
    .WillRepeatedly(Return(7));  // Return 7 on all subsequent calls

The WillRepeatedly clause can be used at most once on an expectation.

RetiresOnSaturation

.RetiresOnSaturation()

Indicates that the expectation will no longer be active after the expected number of matching function calls has been reached.

The RetiresOnSaturation clause is only meaningful for expectations with an upper-bounded cardinality. The expectation will retire (no longer match any function calls) after it has been saturated (the upper bound has been reached). See the following example:

using ::testing::_;
using ::testing::AnyNumber;
...
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, SetNumber(_))  // Expectation 1
    .Times(AnyNumber());
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, SetNumber(7))  // Expectation 2
    .Times(2)
    .RetiresOnSaturation();

In the above example, the first two calls to my_mock.SetNumber(7) match expectation 2, which then becomes inactive and no longer matches any calls. A third call to my_mock.SetNumber(7) would then match expectation 1. Without RetiresOnSaturation() on expectation 2, a third call to my_mock.SetNumber(7) would match expectation 2 again, producing a failure since the limit of 2 calls was exceeded.

The RetiresOnSaturation clause can be used at most once on an expectation and must be the last clause.

ON_CALL

ON_CALL(mock_object,method_name(matchers...))

Defines what happens when the method method_name of the object mock_object is called with arguments that match the given matchers matchers.... Requires a modifier clause to specify the method’s behavior. Does not set any expectations that the method will be called.

The parameter matchers... is a comma-separated list of matchers that correspond to each argument of the method method_name. The ON_CALL specification will apply only to calls of method_name whose arguments match all of the matchers. If (matchers...) is omitted, the behavior is as if each argument’s matcher were a wildcard matcher (_). See the Matchers Reference for a list of all built-in matchers.

The following chainable clauses can be used to set the method’s behavior, and they must be used in the following order:

ON_CALL(mock_object, method_name(matchers...))
    .With(multi_argument_matcher)  // Can be used at most once
    .WillByDefault(action);        // Required

See details for each modifier clause below.

With

.With(multi_argument_matcher)

Restricts the specification to only mock function calls whose arguments as a whole match the multi-argument matcher multi_argument_matcher.

GoogleTest passes all of the arguments as one tuple into the matcher. The parameter multi_argument_matcher must thus be a matcher of type Matcher<std::tuple<A1, ..., An>>, where A1, ..., An are the types of the function arguments.

For example, the following code sets the default behavior when my_mock.SetPosition() is called with any two arguments, the first argument being less than the second:

using ::testing::_;
using ::testing::Lt;
using ::testing::Return;
...
ON_CALL(my_mock, SetPosition(_, _))
    .With(Lt())
    .WillByDefault(Return(true));

GoogleTest provides some built-in matchers for 2-tuples, including the Lt() matcher above. See Multi-argument Matchers.

The With clause can be used at most once with each ON_CALL statement.

WillByDefault

.WillByDefault(action)

Specifies the default behavior of a matching mock function call.

The parameter action represents the action that the function call will perform. See the Actions Reference for a list of built-in actions.

For example, the following code specifies that by default, a call to my_mock.Greet() will return "hello":

using ::testing::Return;
...
ON_CALL(my_mock, Greet())
    .WillByDefault(Return("hello"));

The action specified by WillByDefault is superseded by the actions specified on a matching EXPECT_CALL statement, if any. See the WillOnce and WillRepeatedly clauses of EXPECT_CALL.

The WillByDefault clause must be used exactly once with each ON_CALL statement.

Classes

GoogleTest defines the following classes for working with mocks.

DefaultValue

::testing::DefaultValue<T>

Allows a user to specify the default value for a type T that is both copyable and publicly destructible (i.e. anything that can be used as a function return type). For mock functions with a return type of T, this default value is returned from function calls that do not specify an action.

Provides the static methods Set(), SetFactory(), and Clear() to manage the default value:

// Sets the default value to be returned. T must be copy constructible.
DefaultValue<T>::Set(value);

// Sets a factory. Will be invoked on demand. T must be move constructible.
T MakeT();
DefaultValue<T>::SetFactory(&MakeT);

// Unsets the default value.
DefaultValue<T>::Clear();

NiceMock

::testing::NiceMock<T>

Represents a mock object that suppresses warnings on uninteresting calls. The template parameter T is any mock class, except for another NiceMock, NaggyMock, or StrictMock.

Usage of NiceMock<T> is analogous to usage of T. NiceMock<T> is a subclass of T, so it can be used wherever an object of type T is accepted. In addition, NiceMock<T> can be constructed with any arguments that a constructor of T accepts.

For example, the following code suppresses warnings on the mock my_mock of type MockClass if a method other than DoSomething() is called:

using ::testing::NiceMock;
...
NiceMock<MockClass> my_mock("some", "args");
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, DoSomething());
... code that uses my_mock ...

NiceMock<T> only works for mock methods defined using the MOCK_METHOD macro directly in the definition of class T. If a mock method is defined in a base class of T, a warning might still be generated.

NiceMock<T> might not work correctly if the destructor of T is not virtual.

NaggyMock

::testing::NaggyMock<T>

Represents a mock object that generates warnings on uninteresting calls. The template parameter T is any mock class, except for another NiceMock, NaggyMock, or StrictMock.

Usage of NaggyMock<T> is analogous to usage of T. NaggyMock<T> is a subclass of T, so it can be used wherever an object of type T is accepted. In addition, NaggyMock<T> can be constructed with any arguments that a constructor of T accepts.

For example, the following code generates warnings on the mock my_mock of type MockClass if a method other than DoSomething() is called:

using ::testing::NaggyMock;
...
NaggyMock<MockClass> my_mock("some", "args");
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, DoSomething());
... code that uses my_mock ...

Mock objects of type T by default behave the same way as NaggyMock<T>.

StrictMock

::testing::StrictMock<T>

Represents a mock object that generates test failures on uninteresting calls. The template parameter T is any mock class, except for another NiceMock, NaggyMock, or StrictMock.

Usage of StrictMock<T> is analogous to usage of T. StrictMock<T> is a subclass of T, so it can be used wherever an object of type T is accepted. In addition, StrictMock<T> can be constructed with any arguments that a constructor of T accepts.

For example, the following code generates a test failure on the mock my_mock of type MockClass if a method other than DoSomething() is called:

using ::testing::StrictMock;
...
StrictMock<MockClass> my_mock("some", "args");
EXPECT_CALL(my_mock, DoSomething());
... code that uses my_mock ...

StrictMock<T> only works for mock methods defined using the MOCK_METHOD macro directly in the definition of class T. If a mock method is defined in a base class of T, a failure might not be generated.

StrictMock<T> might not work correctly if the destructor of T is not virtual.

Sequence

::testing::Sequence

Represents a chronological sequence of expectations. See the InSequence clause of EXPECT_CALL for usage.

InSequence

::testing::InSequence

An object of this type causes all expectations encountered in its scope to be put in an anonymous sequence.

This allows more convenient expression of multiple expectations in a single sequence:

using ::testing::InSequence;
{
  InSequence seq;

  // The following are expected to occur in the order declared.
  EXPECT_CALL(...);
  EXPECT_CALL(...);
  ...
  EXPECT_CALL(...);
}

The name of the InSequence object does not matter.

Expectation

::testing::Expectation

Represents a mock function call expectation as created by EXPECT_CALL:

using ::testing::Expectation;
Expectation my_expectation = EXPECT_CALL(...);

Useful for specifying sequences of expectations; see the After clause of EXPECT_CALL.

ExpectationSet

::testing::ExpectationSet

Represents a set of mock function call expectations.

Use the += operator to add Expectation objects to the set:

using ::testing::ExpectationSet;
ExpectationSet my_expectations;
my_expectations += EXPECT_CALL(...);

Useful for specifying sequences of expectations; see the After clause of EXPECT_CALL.