Testing file uploads in PHP

I just had to write unit tests for a file upload script I had to write. As it is not that easy to do, I'll share my findings with you.

My problem was on how I was going to simulate a file upload in a test case. Sure I could simulate a whole post request either using curl of simpleTest webtester. But that would only give me a full overview of the upload process, not its inner details.

There was a way to do that using PHPT, which seems to be the unit tests used by PHP itself. It is supposed to simulate any kind of query. Unfortunatly, setting that up seemed a little to complex for me.

So, how did I do ?

I finally found a way to do that by :

  1. Spoofing the $_FILES array and putting arbitrary test data inside
  2. Copying a test file to the tmp/ directory for testing purpose. Actually the directory does not matter (see 3.)
  3. Wrapping all calls to move_uploaded_file and is_uploaded_file to its own methods. Those two php methods won't work with dummy upload because they weren't really uploaded through POST

So, instead of calling move_uploaded_file, I called $this->moveUploadedFile(), and instead of calling is_uploaded_file(), I called $this->isUploadedFile()

And when times comes to test my class, I just extends the class, overwrite those two methods with new one that uses rename()and file_exists() instead.`

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What does that change ?

The fondamental difference between the former and the latter functions is that the former checks that the target really was uploaded through POST while the latter does not care.

It is extremely important that you use the correct upload method because it provide an additional security check. If you just blindly rename() files specified by your user, you'll ending up putting the database.php and config.php files in the webroot renamed as i_want_to_be_hacked.txt

The other good news is that by wrapping those methods around those functions, you can create mock objects and test all the various return scenarios.


Tags : #move-uploaded-file #files #tests #phpt #is-uploaded-file #upload #simpletest #unit-testing #cakephp #php

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