Clone smells in software evolution

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

58 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although source code cloning (copy&paste programming) represents a significant threat to the maintainability of a software system, problems usually start to arise only when the system evolves. Most of the related research papers tackle the question of finding code clones in one particular version of the software only, leaving the dynamic behavior of the clones out of consideration. Eliminating these clones in large software systems often seems absolutely hopeless, as there might exist several thousands of them. Alternatively, tracking the evolution of individual clones can be used to identify those occurrences that could really cause problems in the future versions. In this paper we present an approach for mapping clones from one particular version of the software to another one, based on a similarity measure. This mapping is used to define conditions under which clones become suspicious (or "smelly") compared to their other occurrences. Accordingly, these conditions introduce the notion of dynamic clone smells. The usefulness of these smells is validated on the Mozilla Firefox internet browser, where the approach was able to find specific bugs that resulted from neglecting earlier copy&paste activities.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICSM 2007 - Proceedings of the 2007 IEEE International Conference on Software Maintenance
Pages24-33
Number of pages10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2007
Event23rd International Conference on Software Maintenance, ICSM - Paris, France
Duration: Oct 2 2007Oct 5 2007

Publication series

NameIEEE International Conference on Software Maintenance, ICSM

Other

Other23rd International Conference on Software Maintenance, ICSM
CountryFrance
CityParis
Period10/2/0710/5/07

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software

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  • Cite this

    Bakota, T., Ferenc, R., & Gyimóthy, T. (2007). Clone smells in software evolution. In ICSM 2007 - Proceedings of the 2007 IEEE International Conference on Software Maintenance (pp. 24-33). [4362615] (IEEE International Conference on Software Maintenance, ICSM). https://doi.org/10.1109/ICSM.2007.4362615