Like many agencies, at FARM we host and maintain a broad estate of web sites and applications.
For all these sites, you can usually mix and match any of the following criteria:
These, combined with the two fundamental truths of the internet (1. the internet is a hostile place and, 2. best practices are always changing), mean that it's a constant battle to keep the sites we run patched, healthy, and responding quickly.
Doing this manually is becoming close to impossible, so for some time we have been using
blackbox, a collection of black-box tests which we use to run automated checks against our sites.
We currently run these tests in our CI environment (which is powered by Atlassian Bamboo), as this allows us to easily schedule testing, and provides a nice front-end to the test results. In the studio, we get very easily digestible green/red overview of which sites are meeting our quality standards, and which need attention. It's also possible to run these tests straight from the desktop, to test sites as they are in development.
Today, we're open-sourcing
blackbox, because it's the kind of tool which all agencies can benefit from. This first release automates the testing of:
robots.txtfile is present.
robots.txtfile isn't blocking too much content.
We also added a few Django-specific tests, which are:
django.contrib.sites.Sitemapobject is correct.
Our internal branch of
blackbox also does some automated security testing, but we want to review this internally a little longer before we open-source that, too.
Date: 5th December 2014.
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