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Jasmine vs Karma: What are the differences?

Jasmine and Karma are both popular testing frameworks for JavaScript applications. Jasmine emphasizes simplicity and readability with its behavior-driven development approach, while Karma serves as a test runner, offering a testing environment and supporting features like coverage and CI integration. Here are the key differences between Jasmine and Karma:

  1. Test Framework vs Test Runner: Jasmine is primarily a behavior-driven development (BDD) test framework. It provides a set of functions and APIs for writing and organizing tests, along with built-in assertion libraries. Jasmine allows you to describe test suites, define test cases, and run assertions to verify the expected behavior of your code. On the other hand, Karma is a test runner that works with various testing frameworks, including Jasmine. Karma provides a test environment, launches browsers or headless browsers to execute tests, and collects test results.

  2. Test Execution Environment: Jasmine runs tests directly in the browser or through Node.js, allowing you to test both client-side and server-side JavaScript code. It provides a simple and intuitive syntax for writing tests and supports asynchronous testing with the help of built-in functions like done or async/await. Karma, on the other hand, provides a test execution environment that can run tests in multiple browsers simultaneously. It spawns browser instances and captures the results, providing a consistent testing environment across different browsers and platforms.

  3. Configuration and Flexibility: Jasmine is easy to set up and requires minimal configuration. It provides a self-contained framework with built-in matchers and a test runner. Jasmine's focus is on simplicity and readability. Karma, on the other hand, requires additional configuration to set up the test environment and specify the browsers to be used for testing. It offers more flexibility in terms of customizing the test runner, integrating with build tools like Webpack or Grunt, and configuring code coverage reports or CI systems.

  4. Community and Ecosystem: Both Jasmine and Karma have active communities and extensive ecosystems. Jasmine has a rich set of built-in features, including spies, mocks, and test doubles. It is widely used for testing JavaScript applications across different frameworks and libraries. Karma, being a test runner, can work with various testing frameworks, including Jasmine, Mocha, and QUnit. It provides plugins and integrations with popular build tools, testing frameworks, and continuous integration systems.

In summary, Jasmine is a behavior-driven development test framework that focuses on simplicity and readability. It provides a set of functions and APIs for writing tests, along with built-in assertion libraries. Karma, on the other hand, is a test runner that can work with multiple testing frameworks, including Jasmine. It provides a test execution environment, supports running tests in multiple browsers, and offers more configuration options and flexibility.

Decisions about Jasmine and Karma

We use Mocha for our FDA verification testing. It's integrated into Meteor, our upstream web application framework. We like how battle tested it is, its' syntax, its' options of reporters, and countless other features. Most everybody can agree on mocha, and that gets us half-way through our FDA verification and validation (V&V) testing strategy.

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Pros of Jasmine
Pros of Karma
  • 64
    Can also be used for tdd
  • 49
    Open source
  • 18
    Originally from RSpec
  • 15
    Great community
  • 14
    No dependencies, not even DOM
  • 10
    Easy to setup
  • 8
  • 3
    Created by Pivotal-Labs
  • 2
    Works with KarmaJs
  • 1
    Jasmine is faster than selenium in angular application
  • 1
    SpyOn to fake calls
  • 1
    Async and promises are easy calls with "done"
  • 61
    Test Runner
  • 35
    Open source
  • 27
    Continuous Integration
  • 22
    Great for running tests
  • 18
    Test on Real Devices
  • 11
    Backed by google
  • 5
    Easy Debugging
  • 2
    Remote Control

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Cons of Jasmine
Cons of Karma
  • 2
    Unfriendly error logs
  • 1
    Slow, because tests are run in a real browser
  • 1
    Requires the use of hacks to find tests dynamically

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What is Jasmine?

Jasmine is a Behavior Driven Development testing framework for JavaScript. It does not rely on browsers, DOM, or any JavaScript framework. Thus it's suited for websites, Node.js projects, or anywhere that JavaScript can run.

What is Karma?

Karma is not a testing framework, nor an assertion library. Karma just launches a HTTP server, and generates the test runner HTML file you probably already know from your favourite testing framework. So for testing purposes you can use pretty much anything you like.

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What companies use Jasmine?
What companies use Karma?
See which teams inside your own company are using Jasmine or Karma.
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What tools integrate with Jasmine?
What tools integrate with Karma?

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What are some alternatives to Jasmine and Karma?
Mocha is a feature-rich JavaScript test framework running on node.js and the browser, making asynchronous testing simple and fun. Mocha tests run serially, allowing for flexible and accurate reporting, while mapping uncaught exceptions to the correct test cases.
Jest provides you with multiple layers on top of Jasmine.
JavaScript is most known as the scripting language for Web pages, but used in many non-browser environments as well such as node.js or Apache CouchDB. It is a prototype-based, multi-paradigm scripting language that is dynamic,and supports object-oriented, imperative, and functional programming styles.
Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency.
GitHub is the best place to share code with friends, co-workers, classmates, and complete strangers. Over three million people use GitHub to build amazing things together.
See all alternatives