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Awesome Open Source

Ruby Test Explorer

Install it from the VS Code Marketplace.

This is a Ruby Test Explorer extension for the VS Code Test Explorer extension.

An example screenshot of the extension in use

The extension supports the RSpec and Minitest test frameworks.



The extension needs Ruby and the rspec-core gem installed (and any other dependencies required by your test suite). It's been tested with Ruby 2.6 and Rspec 3.8, but it should work with most recent versions of Ruby and all versions of Rspec 3.x above 3.6.0 (versions before 3.6.0 do not currently work because they don't expose an id property for tests in the JSON formatter).

By default, you need to have rspec installed via Bundler with a Gemfile and bundle install, otherwise bundle exec rspec won't work. If you want to run your Rspec tests with a command other than bundle exec rspec, you can configure the command with the rubyTestExplorer.rspecCommand setting.


The extension needs Ruby and the minitest gem installed (and any other dependencies required by your test suite). It's been tested with Ruby 2.5 and 2.6, and Minitest 5.x. It should work with most recent versions of Ruby and Minitest.


Currently supported:

  • Support for RSpec and Minitest suites.
  • Automatic detection of test framework (based on gems listed by bundle list), as well as manual override if necessary.
  • Running individual tests.
  • Running full test suite.
  • Running tests for a specific file.
  • Viewing test output for failed tests (click the test in the test explorer sidebar to open the Output view).
  • Line decorations in test files when a test fails.
  • Displaying test statuses. Success, failure, and pending (called 'skipped' in the extension).
  • Live test status updates as the test suite runs.
  • File locations for each test.
  • Configurable RSpec command.
  • Configurable RSpec spec/ directory.
  • Configurable Minitest command.
  • Configurable Minitest test/ directory.
  • Test hierarchy information.
  • Automatic reloading of test suite info when a file in the test directory changes.
  • Multi-root workspaces.


The following configuration options are available:

Property Description
rubyTestExplorer.logpanel Whether to write diagnotic logs to an output panel.
rubyTestExplorer.logfile Write diagnostic logs to the given file.
rubyTestExplorer.testFramework none, auto, rspec, or minitest. auto by default, which automatically detects the test framework based on the gems listed by Bundler. Can disable the extension functionality with none or set the test framework explicitly, if auto-detect isn't working properly.
rubyTestExplorer.filePattern Define the pattern to match test files by, for example ["*_test.rb", "test_*.rb", "*_spec.rb"].
rubyTestExplorer.debuggerHost Define the host to connect the debugger to, for example
rubyTestExplorer.debuggerPort Define the port to connect the debugger to, for example 1234.
rubyTestExplorer.debugCommand Define how to run rdebug-ide, for example rdebug-ide or bundle exec rdebug-ide.
rubyTestExplorer.rspecCommand Define the command to run RSpec tests with, for example bundle exec rspec, spring rspec, or rspec.
rubyTestExplorer.rspecDirectory Define the relative directory of the specs in a given workspace, for example ./spec/.
rubyTestExplorer.minitestCommand Define how to run Minitest with Rake, for example ./bin/rake, bundle exec rake or rake. Must be a Rake command.
rubyTestExplorer.minitestDirectory Define the relative location of your test directory, for example ./test/.


If the extension doesn't work for you, here are a few things you can try:

  • Make sure you've run bundle install and that any gems specified in your Gemfile.lock have been installed (assuming you're using Bundler).
  • Enable the rubyTestExplorer.logpanel config setting and take a look at the output in Output > Ruby Test Explorer Log. This should show what the extension is doing and provide more context on what's happening behind the scenes. (You can alternatively use rubyTestExplorer.logfile to log to a specific file instead).
  • Check the VS Code Developer Tools (Command Palette > 'Developer: Toggle Developer Tools') for any JSON parsing errors, or anything else that looks like it might come from the extension. That could be a bug in the extension, or a problem with your setup.
  • If you're using RSpec, make sure you're using a recent version of the rspec-core gem. If you're on a version prior to 3.6.0, the extension may not work.
  • If you're using RSpec, make sure that the RSpec command and spec directory are configured correctly. By default, tests are run with bundle exec rspec and the tests are assumed to be in the ./spec/ directory. You can configure these with rubyTestExplorer.rspecCommand and rubyTestExplorer.rspecDirectory respectively.
  • If the test suite info isn't loading, your testFramework config may be set to none or the auto-detect may be failing to determine the test framework. Try setting the testFramework config to rspec or minitest depending on what you want to use.

If all else fails or you suspect something is broken with the extension, please feel free to open an issue! :)


You'll need VS Code, Node (any version >= 8 should probably work), and Ruby installed.

  • Clone the repository: git clone
  • Run bin/setup to install dependencies.
  • Open the directory in VS Code.
  • Run npm run watch or start the watch Task in VS Code to get the TypeScript compiler running.
  • Go to the Debug section in the sidebar and run "Ruby adapter". This will start a separate VS Code instance for testing the extension in. It gets updated code whenever "Reload Window" is run in the Command Palette.
    • You'll need a Ruby project if you want to actually use the extension to run tests, I generally use my project vglist for testing, but any Ruby project with RSpec or Minitest tests will work.

This extension is based on the example test adapter, it may be useful to check that repository for more information. Test adapters for other languages may also be useful references.

Running tests

There are two groups of tests included in the repository.

  • Tests for Ruby scripts to collect test information and run tests. Run with bundle exec rake in ruby directory.
  • Tests for VS Code extension which invokes the Ruby scripts. Run from VS Code's debug panel with the "Run tests for" configurations.
    • There are separate debug configurations for each supported test framework.
    • Note that you'll need to run npm run build && npm run package before you'll be able to successfully run the extension tests. You'll also need to re-run these every time you make changes to the extension code or your tests.

You can see .github/workflows/test.yml for CI configurations.

Publishing a new version

See the VS Code extension docs for more info.

Before publishing, make sure to update the file. You also need to be logged in to vsce. When creating a Personal Access Token to log in, make sure to give it access to all organizations in your Azure DevOps account. Otherwise, it won't work correctly.

vsce publish VERSION, e.g. vsce publish 1.0.0 will automatically handle creating the git commit and git tag, updating the package.json, and publishing the new version to the Visual Studio Marketplace. You'll need to manually run git push and git push --tags after publishing.

Alternatively, you can bump the extension version with vsce publish major, vsce publish minor, or vsce publish patch.

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