Reference other specifications

For some large projects, or to write documentation, you will need to structure your specifications so that some of them will reference others. Those references will be of 2 types:

Here is the DSL you will use for those 2 types of references:

object FirstSpecification extends Specification { def is = s2"""
 We can consider one example
  ${ 1 must_== 1 }

  And all these examples are also important so we need to know if they all pass
  ${"important specification" ~ SecondSpecification}

  Finally it is worth having a look at ${"this specification" ~/ ThirdSpecification}.

import org.specs2.specification.core._

object SecondSpecification extends Specification { def is = s2"""
 This spec contains lots of examples
   ${ Fragment.foreach(1 to 100) { i => "example "+i ! ok } }
object ThirdSpecification extends Specification { def is = s2"""
 This is the third specification with a simple example
   this should pass $ok

The syntax shown above to create references is using a string for the link alias and uses two operators:

Operator Description
~ a link reference. The referenced specification gets executed when the first one is
~/ a see reference. The referenced specification doesn’t get executed ("$FirstSpecification" creates a see link as well)

Also, for better html rendering, you can add a tooltip:

  ${ "alias" ~/ (OtherSpec, "tooltip") }

Finally I’m also drawing your attention to the fact that you don’t have to create your specifications as Scala classes but you can use simple objects as shown above.


By default specification links are reported with a status icon in HTML pages. You can change this by using the following methods:


When you execute a given specification you can pass the all argument to execute all the referenced specifications. They will be collected and executed in (topological sort)[] order and any cycle in the reference graph will be broken. Only the “link” references will be executed, not the “see” references.