Testing is vital to make sure that DuckDB works properly and keeps working properly. For that reason, we put a large emphasis on thorough and frequent testing. We run a batch of small tests on every commit using GitHub Actions, and run a more exhaustive batch of tests on pull requests and commits in the master branch.

It is crucial that any new features that get added have correct tests that not only test the “happy path”, but also test edge cases and incorrect usage of the feature. In this section, we describe how DuckDB tests are structured and how to make new tests for DuckDB.

The tests can be run by running the unittest program located in the test folder. For the default compilations this is located in either build/release/test/unittest (release) or build/debug/test/unittest (debug).

Writing Tests

When testing DuckDB, we aim to route all the tests through SQL. We try to avoid testing components individually because that makes those components more difficult to change later on. As such, almost all of our tests can (and should) be expressed in pure SQL. There are certain exceptions to this, which we will discuss in the section “Catch Tests”. However, in most cases you should write your tests in plain SQL.

SQL tests should be written using the SQLLogicTest framework.

C++ tests can be written using the Catch framework.

Client Connector Tests

DuckDB also has tests for various client connectors. These are generally written in the relevant client language, and can be found in tools/*/tests. They also double as documentation of what should be doable from a given client.

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