ASP.NET MVC, StructureMap and … TDD?

· January 28, 2010

I’ve been playing around a bit with ASP.NET MVC and StructureMap (an IOC container). It all looks very nice and works wonder. During this I ran into an excellent blog post by Elija Manor on wiring StructureMap and ASP.NET MVC together. Beware of the favicon-problem though.

Again – i use NHibernate and Fluent NHibernate which so much nicer than the XML-stuff. The critics to Fluent NHibernate says that you cannot reach all functionality from Fluent NHibernate, but here is an example on how to set specific properties in your configuration. Helped me through this example.

Also found some great code examples from the TekPub NHibnernate series here.

OK – I’ve added “TDD?” in the title. I love TDD and it’s my preferred way of doing code, but I have a problem (to quote a thinker). I think TDD doesn’t help my through the broader strokes of my application.

Where do I start? How do I use the test to know that it’s time to add an repository, or an IOC Container? Do I TDD the IOC-code?

I asked the Swedish ALT.NET group a question and got some great tips, mostly they pointed me to BDD and those ideas. I also liked the idea of the Walking skeleton.

But I’m still confused. Can TDD really help you to design a system from the bottom up, or top-down (BDD) for that matter? Will the design be improved by the TDD-design technique? I’m not sure.

For now, my thinking is that it’s better to create a very simple design (MVC + repositories + IOC) to get your “skeleton to walk”, maybe with a functional/integration test that verify the functionality.

With that foundation in place it becomes easier to add some meat to the bones (is this skeleton metaphor taken too far yet?) with the normal TDD techniques and patterns.

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