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A pointcut-based coverage analysis approach for aspect-oriented programs

Information Sciences
Publication Date
  • Software Testing
  • Aspect-Oriented Programming
  • Structural Testing
  • Integration Testing
  • Testing Criteria
  • Testing Aspect-Oriented Programs
  • Java
  • Aspectj
  • Computer Science


Aspect-oriented programming (AOP) is a promising technology that supports separation of crosscutting concerns (i.e., functionality that tends to be tangled with, and scattered through the rest of the system). In AOP, a method-like construct named advice is applied to join points in the system through a special construct named pointcut. This mechanism supports the modularization of crosscutting behavior; however, since the added interactions are not explicit in the source code, it is hard to ensure their correctness. To tackle this problem, this paper presents a rigorous coverage analysis approach to ensure exercising the logic of each advice - statements, branches, and def-use pairs - at each affected join point. To make this analysis possible, a structural model based on Java bytecode - called PointCut-based Del-Use Graph (PCDU) - is proposed, along with three integration testing criteria. Theoretical, empirical, and exploratory studies involving 12 aspect-oriented programs and several fault examples present evidence of the feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed approach. (C) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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