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The rspec-rerun gem is a drop-in solution to retry (rerun) failed RSpec examples. It may be useful, for example, with finicky Capybara tests. The strategy to rerun failed specs is to output a file called rspec.failures that contains a list of failed examples and to feed that file back to RSpec via -e.


Add rspec-rerun to Gemfile in the :development and :test groups.

group :development, :test do
  gem "rspec-rerun"

Require rspec-rerun and change the default task in Rakefile.

require 'rspec-rerun'
task :default => "rspec-rerun:spec"

Run rake or rake rspec-rerun:spec. Failed examples will be rerun automatically.


The rspec-rerun:spec task accepts the following parameters:

  • retry_count: number of retries, defaults to 1, also available by setting

You can set the following global environment variables:

  • RSPEC_RERUN_RETRY_COUNT: number of retries, defaults to the value of retry_count or 1
  • RSPEC_RERUN_PATTERN: spec file pattern, defaults to the value defined by RSpec::Core::RakeTask

Git Ignore

A list of failed examples is stored in a file called rspec.failures. It might also be a good idea that you add rspec.failures to .gitignore.


Rerunning failed specs has been a long requested feature #456 in RSpec. A viable approach was suggested in #596. The infrastructure from that pull request was merged and released with rspec-core 2.11, which enabled re-running specs outside of RSpec, as described in our blog post. This gem has evolved from it.


Fork the project. Make your feature addition or bug fix with tests. Send a pull request. Bonus points for topic branches.

MIT License, see LICENSE for details.

(c) 2012-2014 Artsy Inc., Daniel Doubrovkine and Contributors