Testing 404 redirects in the controller with rspec beta 19


I’m new to rails and I’m trying to wrap my heads around how to spec
controllers using RSpec (using rails 3rc1 and rspec 2.0.0.beta.19).

The problem I’ve run into is when I want to test that my controllers
with a 404 for unfound records.
Whenever I run the spec, the ActiveRecord::RecordNotFound exception is
caught by rails, causing the spec example to fail since the exception
propagates out of the controller into the spec.

From googling around I get that rails only handles the exceptions and does a
404 response when it’s run in production mode, and that you need to call
rescue_action_in_public! in your example if you want this behavior for
mode. However, this does not seem to trigger rails into handling this
with a
redirect to 404 even though the @request.remote_addr gets set to

Do I need to set something up for rails to trigger 404 redirecting of
RecordNotFound? Or is this not at all the correct way to test missing

My full example: (using factory_girl, rspec mocks and devise)

it “respons with 404 when trying to edit non-existing reads” do

get :edit, :id => 2
response.status.should eql 404

and the exception:

  1. ReadsController resources respons with 404 for non existing reads for
    Failure/Error: get :edit, :id => 2


On 2010-08-09 1:29 AM, christofferklang wrote:

and the exception:

  1. ReadsController resources respons with 404 for non existing reads for GET /reads/2/edit
    Failure/Error: get :edit, :id => 2
    Thanks, /Christoffer

This isn’t RSpec 2 / Rails 3 specific, but here’s how I’ve come to
handle this situation:

I wrote a small controller plugin (I call it IdSecurity) that looks for
an id parameter on all requests and queries the database looking for the
matching record. If one is found, it sets an instance variable using
either the class name or a custom name passed in during configuration.
If it is not found, it redirects to the target of your choice, mine
being an error handling route to which I pass the specific error number
I want it to use (in this case, 404). For testing, all I have to do is
stub the Model.find_by_id call returning nil and check that the response
redirects to my error route with the error number argument. It looks
something like:


acts_as_id_security ‘/error/404’ # I haven’t managed to get it to use
route helpers here :frowning:

def edit
# @person will be set by IdSecurity automatically

controller spec:

context ‘record not found’ do
it ‘should redirect to error path with 404’ do
get :edit, :id => ‘1’
response.should redirect_to(error_path(404))

This allows me to test that the plugin works, use it it controllers, and
forget it. I just have to remember that in every action that an id is
expected, there will already be an instance variable set, but isn’t a
big deal to me.


Ah, that looks quite interesting. I’d prefer to let rails do the 404
error handling (adding more magic to the already overwhelming amount is
to much for my brain at this point ;), but if I’ll have to handle it
myself this looks like a viable solution.


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