Static analysis is a crucial element of high-quality software development processes, enabling developers to identify defects in the code during the development process. By ensuring compliance to a coding standard, static analysis not only identifies the defects that can cause program crashes, but also finds issues such as misuse of the language. Problems that can be identified by static analysis include situations where language definition is unclear, where no outcome specification has been defined, or where the compiler or library vendor has some explicit freedom of implementation.Static analysis automates code reviews, removing the opportunity for human error in the process whilst ensuring a deterministic result that removes the emotion associated with individuals reviewing another developers’ code.
Static analysis tools offer developers immediate feedback on code they have written, allowing them to address issues before committing changes to the organisation’s repository. The tools can also be used to provide a measure of overall project quality when used in conjunction with a software quality management system.
Using Static Code Analysis to Reduce Programming Errors
Static code analysis is a method of examining code, without executing it, and reporting on inconsistencies, redundancies, and design patterns known to cause defects or unexpected run-time behavior. It can also ensure compliance with internal, and industry-standard coding standards such as MISRA.
Coding Standards Enforcement
Organizations developing safety-critical embedded software applications benefit greatly by adopting coding standards. Enforcement of coding standards reduces the probability of introducing errors by:
Some software development organizations, such as those building embedded automotive applications, have long embraced coding standards for software development. MISRA C, and MISRA C++ for example, are widely used in the automotive industry.