Static analysis tools involve a wide range of tools used to examine source code, executables, or even documentation. It helps to find problems or issues before it happens without actually executing the code. Static analysis tools may vary on its scope and purpose. It ranges from compiler-level checks for logical errors going to code styling enforcement and cloud-based suites of tools. Static analysis tools cover everything, starting from documenting formatting to code complexity analysis. To put it simply, Static analysis tools are anything that assists in maintaining a healthy code base without running the code.
Why are Static Analysis Tools Useful?
Using Static analysis tools are very helpful for product development. The following enumerates how useful Static analysis tools are and it includes:
Improves product quality
- Definitely want to build a successful feature, tools, or product. However, thinking about it seems to require effort, time, and money. This is when Static analysis tools come in. Such tools can help the developers to reduce and avoid issues altogether. Issues may arise involving tech debt, smelly code, and bugs. These tools make it easier to detect and repair problems before it significantly affects the project.
Improves code quality
- Analysis tools can enforce coding standards and analyze the dependency of graphs. Aside from that, such tools can evaluate control flow, nesting, and data flow. These tools cover the complexity of blocks, functions, classes, files, etc. there are Static analysis tools that can analyze requirements docs or even code documentation. They can also be used to reformat code or measure test coverage. Using the right tools makes the process more efficient and more likely to continue over the lifetime of projects.
- Review does not necessarily require tools. Developers and testers can skip any kind of tools and enforce code analysis during code review. However, integrating static analysis into the development process will free the burden of manually performing analysis, which can be automated. A tool can perform the exact analysis with the same focus to detail every time. Also, relying on these tools can remove the human element from the frustrating parts of the review process. Using tools can also reduce the time of discussing small matters in the review. Instead, it can allocate much time to more essential conversations. Developers and testers can also protect code reviews and can automate as much as possible.
Different Tools for Static Analysis
There is an overwhelming number of static analysis tools and platforms available to use for product development. Moreover, the tools range from multi-platforms to more tools that are specific. Here are examples of some tools:
- Coverity Scan
- Facebook Infer
Some specialized static tools:
- FindBugs for Java
- Android Lint
- Checkstyle for Java
- Detect for Kotlin
There are many more Static analysis tools. Also, its developers and testers are looking for more specialized tools, they can find on Wikipedia or other websites. Hence, finding the right tools is very important. In that way, the process can be a lot easier and effective.