Testing WizardView in Django

Sometimes, you just have to resort to a multi-step view to simplify data entry for a user. Django had an “included” package for this: django.contrib.formtools, until some years ago, when it moved into it’s own repository. It’s still very useful though, although there is a bit of a learning curve.

I have some multi-step wizard views, for things where there are a bunch of different (sometimes dependent, but not necessarily) things we need to get from the user, and commit in an all-or-nothing way.

Writing tests for these views is quite cumbersome, but I’ve recently come up with a couple of things that can make this less painful. The reason it’s somewhat difficult is that the wizard, and the current step form both have form data, so to ensure there are no clashes between name fields, the forms are all prefixed. However, prefixes on forms mean that the data you need to pass to the form must also be prefixed in the correct way.

class TestWizard(TestCase):
    def test_wizard_view(self):
        # user has been created...


        # url is the url for this wizard view.

        response = self.client.get(url)
        self.assertEqual(200, response.status_code)

        response = self.client.post(url, {
            'wizard-current_step': 'first',
            'first-field_a': 'value',
            'first-field_b': 'value',
            'first-field_c': 'value',
        self.assertEqual(200, response.status_code)
        # Because django by default returns a 200 on a form validation error,
        # we need another way to check this. If this is a re-rendering of the
        # same form it will be bound, otherwise it will not be.

        # This next one has a formset instead of a form!
        response = self.client.post(url, {
          'wizard-current_step': 'second',
          'second-0-field_a': 'a',
          'second-0-field_b': 'a',
          'second-1-field_a': 'a',
          'second-1-field_b': 'a',
          'second-INITIAL_FORMS': '0',
          'second-TOTAL_FORMS': '2'
        self.assertEqual(200, response.status_code)
        # Okay, I'm bored with this already!

It would be much nicer if we could just do something like:

class TestWizard(TestCase):
    def test_wizard_view(self):
        # ...

        test_wizard(self, url, 'wizard', [
          ('first', {'field_a': 'value', 'field_b': 'value', ...}),
          ('second', [
            {'field_a': 'a', 'field_b': 'b'},
            {'field_a', 'a', 'field_b': 'a'},

The last part, the formset handling stuff is something I have touched on before, and I’m not sure if I’ll get to that bit now, but the first part is still useful.

def test_wizard(test, url, name, data):
    Using the supplied TestCase, execute the wizard view installed at
    the "url", having the given name, with each item of data.

    test.assertEqual(200, test.client.get(url).status_code)
    for step, step_data in data:
      step_data = {
        '{}-{}'.format(step, key): value
        for key, value in step_data.items()
      step_data['{}-current_step'.format(name)] = step
      response = test.client.post(url, step_data, follow=True)
      test.assertEqual(200, response.status_code)
      if 'form' in response.context:

We might come back to the formset thing later.

But what about when we have a bunch of steps where we already have initial data, and we mostly just want to click next in each page of the wizard, possibly altering just a value here or there?

def just_click_next(test, url, override_data):
    response = test.client.get(url)
    while response.status_code != 302:
        form = response.context['form']

        wizard = response.context['wizard']
        current_step = wizard['steps'].current

        # If we have a formset, then we need to do custom handling.
        if hasattr(form, 'forms'):
            current_step_data = step_data.get(current_step, [])
            data = {
                '{}-{}'.format(current_step, key): value
                for key, value in form.management_form.initial.items()
            for i, _form in enumerate(form.forms):
                current_form_data = current_step_data[i] if len(current_step_data) > i else {}
                    '{}-{}'.format(_form.prefix, field): current_form_data.get(
                    for field in _form.fields
                    if field in current_form_data or field in _form.initial
            current_step_data = step_data.get(current_step, {})
            data = {
                '{}-{}'.format(form.prefix, field): current_step_data.get(
                for field in form.fields
                if field in current_step_data or field in form.initial

        # Add the wizard management form step data.
        data['{}-current_step'.format(wizard['management_form'].prefix)] = current_step

        response = test.client.post(url, data)

    return response

Those paying attention may notice that this one actually does handle formsets in a fairly nice way.

So how do we use it?

class TestViews(TestCase):
    def test_new_revision_wizard(self):
        # Setup required for wizard goes here.
        just_click_next(self, url, {
            'date': {'start_date': '2019-01-01'},
            'confirm': {'confirm': 'on'}
        # Make assertions about the wizard having been run.

This replaces some 80 lines of a test: which actually becomes important when we need to test this with a bunch of subtly different preconditions.