Reduce before You Localize: Delta-Debugging and Spectrum-Based Fault Localization

Arpit Christi, Matthew Lyle Olson, Mohammad Amin Alipour, Alex Groce

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

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Spectrum-based fault localization (SBFL) is one of the most popular and studied methods for automated debugging. Many formulas have been proposed to improve the accuracy of SBFL scores. Many of these improvements are either marginal or context-dependent. This paper proposes that, independent of the scoring method used, the effectiveness of spectrum-based localization can usually be dramatically improved by, when possible, delta-debugging failing test cases and basing localization only on the reduced test cases. We show that for programs and faults taken from the standard localization literature, a large case study of Mozilla's JavaScript engine using 10 real faults, and mutants of various open-source projects, localizing only after reduction often produces much better rankings for faults than localization without reduction, independent of the localization formula used, and the improvement is often even greater than that provided by changing from the worst to the best localization formula for a subject.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - 29th IEEE International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering Workshops, ISSREW 2018
EditorsRoberto Natella, Sudipto Ghosh, Nuno Laranjeiro, Robin Poston, Bojan Cukic
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages184-191
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781538694435
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 16 2018
Event29th IEEE International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering Workshops, ISSREW 2018 - Memphis, United States
Duration: Oct 15 2018Oct 18 2018

Publication series

NameProceedings - 29th IEEE International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering Workshops, ISSREW 2018

Conference

Conference29th IEEE International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering Workshops, ISSREW 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityMemphis
Period10/15/1810/18/18

Keywords

  • automated debugging
  • fault localization
  • test case reduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality

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