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Common Test
User's Guide
Version 1.10

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3 Installation

3.1  General information

The two main interfaces for running tests with Common Test are an executable program named ct_run and an erlang module named ct. The ct_run program is compiled for the underlying operating system (e.g. Unix/Linux or Windows) during the build of the Erlang/OTP system, and is installed automatically with other executable programs in the top level bin directory of Erlang/OTP. The ct interface functions can be called from the Erlang shell, or from any Erlang function, on any supported platform.

A legacy Bourne shell script - named run_test - exists, which may be manually generated and installed. This script may be used instead of the ct_run program mentioned above, e.g. if the user wishes to modify or customize the Common Test start flags in a simpler way than making changes to the ct_run C program.

The Common Test application is installed with the Erlang/OTP system and no additional installation step is required to start using Common Test by means of the ct_run executable program, and/or the interface functions in the ct module. If you wish to use the legacy Bourne shell script version run_test, however, this script needs to be generated first, according to the instructions below.


Before reading on, please note that since Common Test version 1.5, the run_test shell script is no longer required for starting tests with Common Test from the OS command line. The ct_run program (descibed above) is the new recommended command line interface for Common Test. The shell script exists mainly for legacy reasons and may not be updated in future releases of Common Test. It may even be removed.

Optional step to generate a shell script for starting Common Test:

To generate the run_test shell script, navigate to the common_test-<vsn> directory, located among the other OTP applications (under the OTP lib directory). Here execute the script with argument local:

$ ./ local

This generates the executable run_test script in the common_test-<vsn>/priv/bin directory. The script will include absolute paths to the Common Test and Test Server application directories, so it's possible to copy or move the script to a different location on the file system, if desired, without having to update it. It's of course possible to leave the script under the priv/bin directory and update the PATH variable accordingly (or create a link or alias to it).

If you, for any reason, have copied Common Test and Test Server to a different location than the default OTP lib directory, you can generate a run_test script with a different top level directory, simply by specifying the directory, instead of local, when running Example:

$ /usr/local/test_tools

Note that the common_test-<vsn> and test_server-<vsn> directories must be located under the same top directory. Note also that the install script does not copy files or update environment variables. It only generates the run_test script.

Whenever you install a new version of Erlang/OTP, the run_test script needs to be regenerated, or updated manually with new directory names (new version numbers), for it to "see" the latest Common Test and Test Server versions.