TestStack.Seleno 0.4 released

Lately I’ve been spending a fair bit of spare time working hard on getting the TestStack.Seleno project ready for a (rather massive!) 0.4 release. It’s been a lot of fun and I’m quite proud of the impact the core TestStack team and other contributors have made on the library. We feel that it is “production ready” now and will be moving towards a 1.0 release in the somewhat near future.

I won’t bother going into a huge amount of detail on the release because Michael Whelan has done that already, but I’ll list down the major changes here as a tl;dr:

  • Added a bunch of global configuration options:
    • Ability to specify a Castle.Core logger factory to intercept our internal logging
    • Ability to more easily specify a non-Firefox web browser
    • Ability to specify a deployed web application out-of-the-box
    • Ability to more explicitly specify your MVC routes
    • Ability to override the minimum (implicit) wait timeout inside of Selenium
  • Ability to explicitly specify the initial page for a test and initialise the first page object in one line of code
  • Continuous Integration support (now runs in TeamCity)
  • A new HTML Control model that provides a nice API on top of Selenium Web Driver to interact with HTML controls (including easy extensibility for your own controls)
  • A clearer public API
  • Improved test coverage and extensive refactoring of the core library code

You can get the latest version of Seleno on NuGet, or check out our GitHub repository for the latest source code and the getting started documentation. Let us know what you think, or if there are any features that you would like to see. Feel free to add an issue or pull request – the more community interaction we get the better we can make Seleno!

Resolving request-scoped objects into a singleton with Autofac

This week I had an issue raised on my Github site for examples of unobtrusive validation with ASP.NET MVC. The person that raised the issue was having a problem where they wanted their fluent validation modules to be singleton, but they wanted to inject a factory that can be invoked to return a request-scoped object (in this case some sort of database store). Inevitably they came across the “No scope with a Tag matching ‘AutofacWebRequest’ is visible from the scope in which the instance was requested” error.

I’ve blogged previously about a technique for using DependencyResolver.Current and being able to unit test it for similar situations. It’s not a great solution, but it does work and at least it can be unit tested.

Low and behold though, thanks to the power of the Internet, the person that raised the issue asked a question on StackOverflow and got a really elegant solution for how to inject factories in a singleton that will correctly resolve request-scoped objects. I’m pretty excited about it so I thought I’d give it more exposure by doing this blog post.

This is the technique in all it’s glory (I’ve renamed the method name slightly to make it more readable):

public Func<T> HttpRequestScopedFactoryFor<T>()
    return () => DependencyResolver.Current.GetService<T>();


builder.RegisterInstance(HttpRequestScopedFactoryFor<ISomeRequestScopedComponent>()); // this is the magic bit

This will then allow you to do something like this:



public class SomeSingletonType
    private readonly Func<ISomeRequestScopedComponent> _someRequestScopedComponentFactory;

    public SomeSingletonType(Func<ISomeRequestScopedComponent> someRequestScopedComponentFactory())
        _someRequestScopedComponentFactory = someRequestScopedComponentFactory;

    public void SomeMethod() {
        var requestScopedComponent = _requestScopedComponentFactory();

Nice and even easier to unit test than using DependencyResolver.Current directly!

Big thanks to @thardy and @felix.

Announcing NHibernate.SqlAzure version 1.0!

I’m proud to be able to announce the release of version 1.0 of NHibernate.SqlAzure!

This library takes care of retrying when the transient errors that SQL Azure throws at you occur while using the NHibernate ORM. It’s been in Beta for the last few months and has been successfully used on a number of production websites.

Changes from 0.9 to 1.0

  • Bug fix when using Schema validation (thanks to @hmvs)
  • There is now a transient error detection strategy and associated NHibernate driver (SqlAzureClientDriverWithTimeoutRetries; say that 10 times fast!!) that retries for timeout exceptions (see the Github page for details and also thanks to @hmvs for a contribution towards this)
  • Some instances where exceptions were wrapped in NHibernate exceptions (batching, transactions) are now picked up as transient exceptions when before they were ignored
  • You can now easily log connection and command exceptions separately (see the CommandRetry and ConnectionRetry virtual methods on the driver class you use)
  • The documentation is a bit more comprehensive now
  • I finished writing all the automated tests I wanted to
  • Been road-tested on a number of sites over the last few months in production

This project is a collaborative effort along with my partner in code crime – Matt Davies – all code was either pair programmed together or reviewed by the other party.

Go and grab it from NuGet today and let me know how you go! Installation / usage instructions are on the Github page.