Running Unit Tests in the CLI

Running all unit tests

To run all tests, navigate to the Magento base directory and execute the following command:

$ ./vendor/bin/phpunit -c dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml.dist

Running only a subset of the unit tests

To run only tests within a specific directory branch, all you have to do is to specify the directory branch after the command.

The following example tells PHPUnit to look for any file ending with Test.php within the directory branch app/code/Example/Module/Test/Unit and try to execute it.

$ ./vendor/bin/phpunit -c dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml.dist app/code/Example/Module/Test/Unit


The phpunit executable is installed by composer and linked into the directory vendor/bin.

The option -c dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml.dist specifies the configuration file for PHPUnit.

If custom configuration settings are required (more on that later), the file dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml.dist can be copied to dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml and adjusted as needed. In that case modify the -c flag accordingly.

PHPUnit has many additional command line options. Please refer to the PHPUnit documentation for more information (currently Magento 2 uses PHPUnit version 4.1.0).

Solutions to common problems

Permission Denied

One possible reason for this to happen might be if you are trying to execute PHPUnit inside a Virtual Box VM with shared folders that don’t allow modifying permissions.

Whatever the reason, if you encounter the permission denied: vendor/bin/phpunit error, you can prefix the command with the PHP interpreter, so your system knows what binary to use to run the tests.

$ php -f vendor/bin/phpunit -- -c dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml.dist

Use the correct PHP interpreter

On many development systems, you might have more one PHP version installed. You must know the correct PHP interpreter to use for testing; that is, Buse the same version of PHP to run the unit tests you use to run Magento.

Some examples follow:

  • Ubuntu: /usr/bin/php
  • CentOS: /usr/bin/php
  • OS X:

    • System: /usr/bin/php
    • Homebrew: /usr/local/Cellar/php56/5.6.19/bin/php
    • MAMP: /Applications/MAMP/bin/php/php5.6.19/bin/php

You can either fix your $PATH (please refer to your system documentation on how to do that), or specify the full path to the PHP interpreter. For example:

$ /usr/local/Cellar/php56/5.6.19/bin/php -f vendor/bin/phpunit -- -c dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml.dist

Memory Limit

If you encounter an error similar to Fatal error: Allowed memory size of 67108864 bytes exhausted, follow these steps to resolve it.

Copy the PHPUnit configuration file dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml.dist to dev/tests/unit/phpunit.xml

Find the following section:

    <ini name="date.timezone" value="America/Los_Angeles"/>
    <ini name="xdebug.max_nesting_level" value="200"/>

Add the following line in the <php> block to disable the PHP memory limit during test execution.

<ini name="memory_limit" value="-1"/>