Codeception Setup Guide line

Codeception is a PHP Testing Framework. It is very easy to install and set up test environment in your system. You can write your automation test cases in your favourite text editor/IDE and run them in the browser you wish. Let’s see everything in details:

Why use Codeception?

  • It combines all testing types (acceptance, functional and unit)
  • Has support for in built WordPress functions. Supported functions can be checked here ->
  • Good documentation is available here ->
  • Tests can be executed using Firefox, Chrome, Safari and other browsers including PhantomJS with Selenium WebDriver or using cloud testing services like BrowserStack, saucelab etc.
  • Tests can be executed inside a PHP framework. Supported frameworks are Symfony, Laravel, Zend Framework, Yii, Phalcon etc
  • Codeception simplifies REST and SOAP testing. There are flexible commands to test structure and data of JSON and XML responses.
  • Codeception supports Behavior Driven Development(BDD)
  • It is very popular in WordPress companies. VIP partners like 10up, XWP, rtCamp use it to test their projects.

Installing Codeception

You can install the codeception either way explain below.

  1. Using Composer
  2. Using PHAR file

I have set up my system using composer though you can choose any option, whichever works best for you. If you want to install using the second method, please check this link. Alternatively, please keep reading this article for the first method. First check if the composer is installed in your system and if it is not there then you have to install the composer first.

Installing Composer

curl -sS | php

Check this link for more information about composer. Alternatively you can use brew install composer (for mac users)

Running Composer

The resulting file is composer.phar, a PHP Archive that can be executed directly via PHP. Execute command below in order to run Composer.

php composer.phar

However, we want composer to be accessible globally by simply typing composer. To do this, move it to/usr/local/bin/

sudo mv composer.phar /usr/local/bin/

Now, add below line to~/.bash_profilefile

nano ~/.bash_profile
alias composer="php /usr/local/bin/composer.phar"

Now, reopen the terminal and run


It will show you the composer details like its version number along with various commands.

Installing Codeception

Now to the Project folder and create tests directory where you want to place the automated test cases.

E.g. If you are working on Automation of XYZ Plugin then go the plugin directory and create and test directory inside XYZ proejct folder.

Inside the test directory create one composer.json file and add the below lines of code and save it.

    "require": {
    "require-dev": {
        "lucatume/wp-browser": "*"

Now, open the terminal and jump till the test folder. Run the below command which will install the codeception for you.

composer update

If you have any doubt regarding composer install v/s composer update then please read here.

Once it is installed, you can cross check the same by relaunching the terminal and execute the below command. Which will show you the installed codeception version along with different commands and usage.


Setup Codeception for Project

To fully use the WordPress specific modules of the WPBrowser suite you need to setup a local WordPress installation.

vendor/bin/codecept bootstrap

The above command codecept bootstrap creates the codeception.yml file and tests directory. Inside the tests directory it creates the acceptance, functional and unit suites a configuration file for each.

Edit the codeception.yml file to match your local WordPress setup and point the modules to the local WordPress installation folder, the local WordPress URL and so on.

Acceptance Test

Acceptance tests emulate the behaviour of a real user visiting your site.

You can use the WebDriver module defined by Codeception. The WPWebDriver module drives a real browser in the same way the WebDriver does. The modules require some WordPress specific parameters to work.

Configuring tests/acceptance.suite.yml

class_name: AcceptanceTester
        - \Helper\Acceptance
        - WPWebDriver
        - Asserts
            port: '<Port_ID>'
            browser: '<Browser_Name>'
            url: '<Test_Url>'
            adminUsername: ''
            adminPassword: ''
            adminPath: '/wp-admin'

Codeception scenario tests are called Cepts.

vendor/bin.codecept generate:cept acceptance Login


codecept generate:cept acceptance Login

This command will generate LoginCept.php file under acceptance directory.

Write your sample scenario

$I = new AcceptanceTester($scenario);
$I->wantTo('sign in my web site');
$I->seeElement( 'input#wp-submit' );
$I->click( 'input#wp-submit' );
$I->seeElement( 'li#menu-dashboard' );

Understanding the Webdriver Module

The WPWebDriver module requires a Selenium or PhantomJS server to run. In order to run Selenium, you need to download Selenium Server and get it running. Alternatively, you may use PhantomJS headless browser but this is useful only if you want to run headless script. (I use selenium server.) This way you can see the actual output in the real browser in your Local system along with terminal will prompt which code line is being executed.

How to run scenario using Selenium Server

1. Launch The Selenium Server

  1. Download Selenium Server if it isn’t there.
  2. Launch the server with command : java -jar selenium-server-standalone

2. Launch the respective driver (chrome or firefox)

_NOTE:_To run the scenario in the browser you have to download the driver for the relevant browser. E.g. I want to run my test in chrome browser then you will need Chrome Driver. To run the scenario in Firefox browser you have to download the Gecko driver.

  1. Download the latest Chrome driver OR Firefox driver.
  2. Move it to /use/local/bin to make it available globally.
  3. For chrome, execute chromedriver --url-base=/wd/hub
  4. For Firefox, executegeckodriver

3. Run the Scenario using codecept command

codecept run test/acceptance/LoginCept.php

Cloud Testing

Sometimes you may need to test the site on different environments with a different set of browsers and OS which we call cross browser testing.

For example, you may need to test your website on IE browser with requested browser version on Windows OS and you are working on Mac or Linux System. So here comes the use of Cloud Testing where it provides you the different set of browsers along with browser versions and Operating System.

Cloud Testing services can run your WebDriver tests in the cloud. Codeception provides support for Browserstack, Sauce lab, TestingBot etc. You can choose your cloud and set up accordingly. We are using Browserstack for the same. You just need to set the WebDriver configuration to as explain below.

  • Specify the host to connect to (depends on the cloud provider)
  • Authentication details (to use your account)
  • Browser
  • OS

Reconfiguretests/acceptance.suite.ymlfile as shown below.

class_name: AcceptanceTester
        - \Helper\Acceptance
        - WPWebDriver
        - Asserts
            port: '80'
            browser: '<Browser_Name>'
            url: '<Test_Url>'
            adminUsername: ''
            adminPassword: ''
            adminPath: '/wp-admin'
              'browserstack.user': '<Browserstack_Username>'
              'browserstack.key': '<Browserstack_Acceskey>'
              'os': '<OS_Name>'

You can set many other parameters under capabilities as per your need. E.g., Screen resolution, browser version, os version, etc. Check this link for detailed description and run your scenario the same way.

To see the execution step by step use below command

codecept run test/acceptance/LoginCept.php --steps

To debug the execution step by step use below comm

codecept run test/acceptance/LoginCept.php --debug

Check the below screenshot for how it looks when your test runs successfully.


  1. Codeception
  2. Codeception for WordPress (That is what we’ve used)
  3. Codeception commands
  4. Codeception Webdriver Module
  5. Browserstack integration with codeception
  6. Php Test Club – Codeception Forum

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