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Test with the gcloud CLI

This guide describes how to run an XCTest or a Game Loop test using the gcloud CLI.

Step 1: Configure your local Google Cloud SDK environment

  1. Download the Google Cloud SDK.
  2. This includes the gcloud CLI tool.

  3. Make sure your installation is up-to-date and includes the gcloud firebase command:
          gcloud components update
  4. Log in to the gcloud CLI using your Google account:
          gcloud auth login
  5. Set your Firebase project in gcloud, where PROJECT_ID is the ID of your Firebase project:
         gcloud config set project PROJECT_ID

Step 2: Run your test

Run an XCTest

  1. Upload the .zip file of your test by running the following command (if you haven't yet packaged up your app, see Packaging your XCTest):

    cd FOLDER_WITH_TEST_OUTPUT/Build/Products ; \
    zip -r Debug-iphoneos YOUR_SCHEME_iphoneosDEPLOYMENT_TARGET-arm64.xctestrun
  2. Choose your test dimensions.

    Test Lab lets you run tests on a variety of iOS versions, devices, screen orientations, and locales. These configurations are known as the test's test dimensions. To see the options for each dimension (e.g., supported Xcode versions for the device's iOS version), substitute models, versions, or locales for dimension in the following command:

    gcloud firebase test ios dimension list

    Screen orientation is somewhat simpler, as its only options are portrait and landscape.

    Look through the list of test dimensions, and select a few combinations that you'd like to run your test on. Visit Pricing Plans to see the maximum number of combinations you can run per day.

  3. Once you've chosen a set of test dimensions, you can have Test Lab run your tests using the firebase test ios run command. For each combination of test dimensions you'd like to test on, include a separate --device flag:

    gcloud firebase test ios run --test PATH/TO/ \
     --device model=MODEL_ID_1,version=VERSION_ID_1,locale=LOCALE_1,orientation=ORIENTATION_1 \
     --device model=MODEL_ID_2,version=VERSION_ID_2,locale=LOCALE_2,orientation=ORIENTATION_2 \

    It is possible that your test will fail due to an incompatibility between the Xcode version with which the test was built and the default Xcode version used by Test Lab. To specify a supported Xcode version for your test, use the --xcode-version flag:

    gcloud firebase test ios run --test PATH/TO/ \
     --device model=MODEL_ID_1,version=VERSION_ID_1,locale=LOCALE_1,orientation=ORIENTATION_1 \

Test Special Entitlements

To test entitlements that require an explicit App ID, you can do so by setting the --test-special-entitlements flag. Test Lab re-signs the application with a new bundle-identifier to support special entitlements, so please make sure there are no resources in your zip file containing direct references to the app's bundle id.

Push Notifications

For authorizing push notification requests, users can create JSON web tokens by using the private signing key along with the Key ID - C7FD9DJAA8 and the Team ID - 9CKCGNNUQN. The generated tokens would be valid for one hour and need to be refreshed every 60mins. Read more on Establishing a Token-Based Connection to APNs.

Run a Game Loop test

Run the gcloud beta firebase test ios run command and use the following flags to configure the run:

Flags for Game Loop tests

Required: Specifies the type of iOS test you want to run. You can enter test types xctest (default) or game-loop.


Required: Absolute path (GCS or filesystem) to your app’s IPA file. This flag is only valid when running Game Loop tests.


The loops (aka scenarios) you want to run in your app. You can enter one loop, a list or loops, or a range of loops. The default loop is 1.

For example, --scenario-numbers=1-3,5 runs loops 1, 2, 3, and 5.


The physical device you want to run your test on (find out which available devices you can use).


The maximum duration you want your test to run. You can enter an integer to represent the duration in seconds, or an integer and enumeration to represent the duration as a longer unit of time.

For example:

  • --timeout=200 forces your test to terminate when it runs up to 200 seconds.
  • --timeout=1h forces your test to terminate when it runs up to an hour.

For example, the following command runs a Game Loop test that executes loops 1, 4, 6, 7, and 8 on an iPhone 8 Plus:

gcloud beta firebase test ios run
 --type game-loop --app path/to/my/App.ipa --scenario-numbers 1,4,6-8

For more information on the gcloud CLI, see the reference documentation.

Step 4 (Optional): Automate future tests you build

Scripting gcloud commands with Test Lab

You can use shell scripts or batch files to automate mobile app testing commands that you would otherwise run using the gcloud command line. This sample bash script runs an XCTest with a two-minute timeout, and reports if the test run completed successfully:

if gcloud firebase test ios run --test --timeout 2m
    echo "Test matrix successfully finished"
    echo "Test matrix exited abnormally with non-zero exit code: " $?

Script exit codes

Test Lab provides several exit codes that you can use to better understand the results of tests that you run using scripts or batch files.

Exit code Notes
0 All test executions passed.
1 A general failure occurred. Possible causes include: a filename that does not exist or an HTTP/network error.
2 Testing exited because unknown commands or arguments were provided.
10 One or more test cases (tested classes or class methods) within a test execution did not pass.
15 Firebase Test Lab could not determine if the test matrix passed or failed, because of an unexpected error.
19 The test matrix was canceled by the user.
20 A test infrastructure error occurred.

Step 5: Investigate test results

When the test starts, you receive a link to the Test Results page. Tests can take a number of minutes to run, depending on the number of different configurations you have selected and the test timeout duration set for your tests. After your tests have run, you can review test results. See Analyzing Firebase Test Lab Results to learn more about how to interpret your test results.

Next step

Read the Google Cloud SDK documentation to explore testing options that are generally available or in beta.