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Tag Archives: node.js

nodeunit and SharePoint: unit tests in javascript

nodeunit is a (relatively) new test framework for javascript, mainly for node, but it can be run in a browser as well. The most popular framework for testing javascript is Qunit, but I’ll lab with it another time. I found nodeunit tests in moment.js – the best date handling framework for javascript and it worked very well.

So first of all, why should we test? The best answer is actually: Life is to short for manual testing (it was actually the slogan at the Google London Test Automation Conference 2007.

Why nodeunit?

Nodeunit can be run directly on server, it can test your javascript models. Even SharePoint related stuff can be tested outside the web browser. You can even automate your javascript unit tests before you build or deploy.

Nodeunit basics

We create a very simple javascript file in a sharepoint solution: CustomerModel:

Note the last if statement. This just defines what to export in nodejs.

To be able to run nodeunit tests on server we have to install node.js. Then we have to install nodeunit with npm globally:

npm install nodeunit -g

Then create a test file: TestCustomerModel.js:

Btw, here is my solution:

Next, run the test:

nodeunit TestCustomerModel.js

Allright, something is wrong:

Aha, we forgot the space. Let’s fix it:

And the test result is much better 😀

Nodeunit in web browser

nodeunit can be run in a web browser as well. I’ll test the same CustomerModel in this lab. Very simple stuff so far 😀

We create an application page, called Test.aspx. Download “nodeunit.js“. If you load javascript files in your master page and the tests are dependent of them, make sure you have the same master page in your application page:

Create browser/TestCustomerModel.js:

Change the Test.aspx:

When you deploy this as an aspx page, you’ll not see the test results, because nodeunit writes directly to body element, which is not rendered… We have to change nodeunit.js a little bit..

Then we can see the result on the page:

The whole solution for this lab can be found in my repo on github.

Hello world in node.js

I know, node.js has been present for a while. But I actually had no time to try it. I was surprised that now it is very straight forward to start with node.js. Allright, everything begins with Hello world. Eventhough it is available for allmost all combinations of operating systems and servers, the easiest way to test it was actually Ubuntu. To install just run:

sudo apt-get install nodejs

Then make a new directory and create the hello.js:

mkdir hello
cd hello
vi hello.js

The javascript code creates a server, instructs what to send back as a response and says to node to listen to port 40113 (what a weird number 🙂 )

var http = require('http');
http.createServer(function(req, res) {
  res.writeHead(200, {'Content-Type': 'text/plain; charset=utf-8' });
  res.end('Salam tĕnce!');

After that, just start the node process:

node hello.js

Very simple. Now go to localhost:40113 and see the result!

node.js on (Cloud9 IDE)

Even simpler way to try node.js is to create an app in Cloud9 IDE. Begin with a hello-world app.

That’s it.

Now some other useful links for starting with node.js:


If you want to get the latest node package, you shouldn’t install nodejs from apt. Just clone the node git repo, compile and update the PATH. npm package is preinstalled then:

git clone
cd node
sudo make install
export PATH=${PATH}:/usr/local/bin

Or add a new repository to get the latest stable version of node.js

sudo apt-get install python-software-properties
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:chris-lea/node.js
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install nodejs npm
node.js and SharePoint

Luc Stakenborg has developed a node.js package for retrieving data from SharePoint. To use it, install two packages:

npm install xml2js
npm install sharepoint

Then create a js file with this content:

var SP = require('sharepoint'),
    site = '',
    username = 'yourusername',
    password = 'yourpassword';

var client = new SP.RestService(site),
    posts = client.list('Posts');

var showResponse = function (err, data) {

client.signin(username, password, function () {

javascript console in Powershell

It can’t be easier. If node is installed, just fire up PowerShell and type node:

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