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The "Fetch a Token" Endpoint Test

Almost every API authentication system - whether you're using JWT, OAuth or something different - works basically the same. Somehow, your API client gets an access token. And once it does that, it attaches it to all future requests to prove who it is and that it has access to perform some action.

How does the Client get a Token?

So, there are two parts to the process:

  1. How the client gets a token
  2. How a client uses that token.

And actually, the first part is a lot more interesting because there are a bunch of strategies for how a client should obtain a token. For example, you could create an endpoint where the client submits their username and password in exchange for a token. Or, you can do something more complex: like use the OAuth flow. This is a good idea when you have third-party clients - like an iPhone app - that need to gain access to your server on behalf of some user. Or, you could use both strategies - GitHub lets you do that.

But the end result is always the same: the client gets a token. We're going to build the first idea: a simple endpoint where the client can submit a username and password to get back a token. That's something that will work for most APIs.

The new Token Resource

Everything we've built so far has been centered around the Programmer resource. Now, we'll be sending back tokens: and you can think of a Token as our second API resource: the client will be able to create new tokens, and potentially, we could allow them to delete tokens.

As always, we'll start with the test. Create a new class called TokenControllerTest. Make it extend the handy ApiTestCase that we've been working on. Add public function testPOSTCreateToken():

23 lines tests/AppBundle/Controller/Api/TokenControllerTest.php
... lines 1 - 2
namespace Tests\AppBundle\Controller\Api;
use AppBundle\Test\ApiTestCase;
class TokenControllerTest extends ApiTestCase
{
public function testPOSTCreateToken()
{
... lines 11 - 20
}
}

Ok, let's think about this. First, we're going to need a user in the database before we start. To create one, add $this->createUser() with weaverryan and the super-secure and realistic password I<3Pizza:

23 lines tests/AppBundle/Controller/Api/TokenControllerTest.php
... lines 1 - 6
class TokenControllerTest extends ApiTestCase
{
public function testPOSTCreateToken()
{
$this->createUser('weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza');
... lines 12 - 20
}
}

Next, make the POST request: $response = $this->client->post() to /api/tokens:

23 lines tests/AppBundle/Controller/Api/TokenControllerTest.php
... lines 1 - 10
$this->createUser('weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza');
$response = $this->client->post('/api/tokens', [
... line 14
]);
... lines 16 - 23

That URL could be anything, but the most important thing is that it's consistent with the /api/programmers we already have.

The last thing we need to do is send the username and password. And really, you can do this however you want. But, why not take advantage of the classic HTTP Basic Authentication. To send an HTTP Basic username and password with Guzzle, add an auth option and set it to an array containing the username and password:

23 lines tests/AppBundle/Controller/Api/TokenControllerTest.php
... lines 1 - 10
$this->createUser('weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza');
$response = $this->client->post('/api/tokens', [
'auth' => ['weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza']
]);
... lines 16 - 23

And hey, reminder time! On production, you will make your API work over HTTPS. The last thing we want is plain-text password flying all over the interwebs.

Below, assert that we get back a 200 status code, or you could use 201 - since technically a resource is being created:

23 lines tests/AppBundle/Controller/Api/TokenControllerTest.php
... lines 1 - 10
$this->createUser('weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza');
$response = $this->client->post('/api/tokens', [
'auth' => ['weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza']
]);
$this->assertEquals(200, $response->getStatusCode());
... lines 17 - 23

Now, what should the response look like? Well, it should be a token resource... which is really just a string. Use the asserter to assert that the JSON at least contains a token property - we don't know exactly what its value will be:

23 lines tests/AppBundle/Controller/Api/TokenControllerTest.php
... lines 1 - 10
$this->createUser('weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza');
$response = $this->client->post('/api/tokens', [
'auth' => ['weaverryan', 'I<3Pizza']
]);
$this->assertEquals(200, $response->getStatusCode());
$this->asserter()->assertResponsePropertyExists(
$response,
'token'
);
... lines 21 - 23

Looks cool! Copy the method name and run only this test:

./vendor/bin/phpunit --filter testPOSTCreateToken

This should fail... and it does! A 404 not found. Time to bring this to life!

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