Status Gem Version

This library provides a variety of convergent resources for interacting with the Chef Server; along the way, it happens to provide some very useful and sophisticated ways of running Chef resources as recipes in RSpec examples.

This document may have errors, but it should have enough pointers to get you oriented.

There are essentially 3 collections here:

Resource/Provider Pairs for Manipulating Chef Servers

You'd use these in recipes/cookbooks. They are documented on the main Chef docs site.

Base/Helper Classes

To support the resource/provider pairs.

RSpec Support

Most of these RSpec...things were developed for testing the resource/provider pairs above; however, you can also require cheffish/rspec/chef_run_support for any RSpec expects you'd like, as we do for chef-provisioning and its drivers (especially chef-provisioning-aws).

The awesomeness here is that instead of instantiating a run_context and a node and a resource as Ruby objects, you can test your resources in an actual recipe:

when_the_chef_12_server "exists", organization: 'some-org', server_scope: :context, port: 8900..9000 do
  file "/tmp/something_important.json" do
    content "A resource in its native environment."

An enclosing context that spins up chef-zero (local mode) Chef servers as dictated by server_scope. Chef::Config will be set up with the appropriate server URLs (see the with_* operators below).


  • :context
  • :example [default?]
  • ?


  • port number (8900 is the default)
  • port range (server will continue trying up this range until it finds a free port)
expect_recipe {
  # unquoted recipe DSL here.
}.to be_truthy    # or write your own matchers.

Converges the recipe using expect() (parentheses), which tests for a value and cannot be used with raise_error.

expect_converge {
  # unquoted recipe DSL here.
}.to raise_error(ArgumentException)

Converges the recipe using expect{ } (curly brackets), which wraps the block in a begin..rescue..end to detect when the block raises an exception; hence, this is only for raise_error.

The blocks for the following appear to be mostly optional: what they actually do is set the Chef::Config variable in the name to the given value, and if you provide a block, the change is scoped to that block. Probably this would be clearer if it were aliased to (and preferring) using rather than with.

  • with_chef_server(server_url, options = {}, &block)
  • with_chef_local_server(options, &block)
  • with_chef_environment(name, &block)
  • with_chef_data_bag_item_encryption(encryption_options, &block)
  • with_chef_data_bag(name)
    • Takes a block, though this is not noted in the method signature.


RSpec matchers

These are used with expect_recipe or expect_converge:

expect_recipe {
  file "/tmp/a_file.json" do
    content "Very important content."
}.to be_idempotent.and emit_no_warnings_or_errors


  • Runs the provided recipe again (expect_(recipe|converge) ran it the first time) and asks the Chef run if it updated anything (using updated?, which appears to be defined on Chef::Resource instead of Chef::Client, so there's some clarification to be done there); the matcher is satisfied if the answer is "no."


  • Greps the Chef client run's log output for WARN/ERROR lines; matcher is satisfied if there aren't any.


  • Sifts the recipe's event stream(!) to determine if any resources were updated; matcher is satisfied is the answer is "yes."
  • This is not the opposite of be_idempotent.


  • TBD