Setting Up Cypress

Install Dependencies

npm install --save-dev cypress

This installs Cypress into your project.

Run Cypress

npx cypress open

This runs the cypress app, which adds a bunch of folders and example tests to your project.

You can run the tests in the cypress/integration/examples/ folder, or add your own tests to the cypress/integration/ directory.

Note that this command requires npm@5.2.0 or greater

What Else Is Installed?

The first time it's run, the npx cypress open command also installs a cypress.json file at the root of your project which is used to configure Cypress.

All of the testing-related files live in the cypress/ directory.

The cypress/fixtures directory holds JSON files that can be used to mock data for your tests if needed.

The cypress/plugins directory holds plugins that can tap into the Node process that runs alongside the browser where Cypress tests run.

From the Cypress docs:

Plugins are a “seam” for you to write your own custom code that executes during particular stages of the Cypress lifecycle. It also allows you to execute code within your own Node version when the nodeVersion is set in your configuration.

Cypress will also create cypress/videos and cypress/screenshots directories that you probably won't want to source control, so it's a good idea to add these to your .gitignore.

Running Your First Cypress Test

Create a file in the cypress/integration folder that will house your new test. Name it whatever is relevant to the system you'd like to test.

This is also a good point to delete all the default demonstration tests that Cypress ships with the original installation.

Cypress tests use syntax that's similar to Mocha, so you can use describe blocks to wrap related tests, and it blocks to wrap assertions about the thing under test.

describe("this is my first test", () => {
it("can run this test", () => {})

Then run npx cypress open to launch the Cypress app, and click Run all specs to run your first Cypress test.

Now Cypress is installed and running successfully.

Now What?

If you enjoyed this post, I'd love to continue the conversation on Twitter.

Social media not your thing? Shoot me an email:

Designed and developed by Will Harris

Built with

Hosted on