Debugging is the process of examining the state of a program - generally with a debugging tool - while it is running and attempting to find bugs that cause it to behave abnormally.

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I have a stacktrace and limit of 250 characters for a bug report

I'm developing an xbox indie game and as a last-resort I have a try...catch encompassing everything. At this point if an exception is raised I can get the user to send me a message through the xbox ...
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13answers
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Becoming a Better Bug-Fixer

I love being a programmer. There, I said it. However, with that said, I've realized lately that I really can't stand bug-fixing. At all. In fact, while I'm developing something, my productivity is ...
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2answers
158 views

Syntax tree dump format

When writing a compiler, it is useful to include the ability to dump the abstract syntax tree in a human readable format, for debugging purposes. This output might also be useful for other tools like ...
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17answers
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How to check or assess debugging skills of a person? [closed]

What kind of skills determine a person that is capable of debugging code with ease? Some time ago my friend carried out an interview with a relatively good programmer. The programmer got hired. He ...
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4answers
328 views

What are good strategies in C for dealing with pointer errors of this type?

In C, I often come across errors with code like this prio_queue->head[index] = newEntry; Yields a " "Cannot assign Entry** to Entry* " How do you prevent/debug errors of this type, in general? ...
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4answers
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How can I debug a memory leak in a service [closed]

I have a windows service program that is running on one of our servers. It has a memory leak of some kind within the program. When it first starts running it is using 20,000k memory. Within a few ...
18
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12answers
2k views

Is it possible to speed-read code well? [closed]

Sometimes we have huge code listings to deal with, and I'm curious as to how the advanced, highly skilled programmers read code. And I'll say with an emphasis on debugging and finding issues.
26
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13answers
2k views

Does the use of debuggers have an effect on the efficiency of programmers? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are debugging skills important to become a good programmer? I'm a young Java developer and I make a systematic use of the Netbeans debugger. In fact, I often develop my ...
10
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2answers
6k views

How to debug/change Java code while the program is running?

I just saw a video showing how Notch (of Minecraft fame) is debugging and changing Minecraft while it is running. He pauses the game, changes something in the code and then unpauses the game where the ...
7
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7answers
526 views

What should I learn more about debugging?

To debug my programs I mainly use the following methods: Use printf (or equivalent in other languages) to check the value of a variable after a particular statement or to check whether the program ...
19
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12answers
2k views

Is it significantly costlier to fix a bug at the end of the project?

In a blog post by Andrew Hay, the following axiom was posited: It costs significantly more to fix a bug at the end of the project that it does to fix the same bug earlier in the project. ...
91
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21answers
8k views

What's the benefit of avoiding the use of a debugger?

Over the course of my career, I've noticed that some developers don't use debugging tools, but do spot checking on erroneous code to figure out what the problem is. While many times being able to ...
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2answers
1k views

Never written much unit tests, how can I practice more of it?

I have an interview coming up soon next week and there's a few things on their list of responsibilties for this software development job (the job position title is vague, it says java developer) that ...
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2answers
644 views

Is it possible to prune the stacktrace returned for a custom exception in PHP

I am working on a project in PHP that does a lot of input validation and can throw different custom exception classes in various layers of the application. To make the project code easier to read, ...
8
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2answers
3k views

Debug multiprocessing in Python

What are some good practices in debugging multiprocessing programs in Python?
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2answers
544 views

How do you find errors related to undeclared variables in php?

If I copy a piece of code from somewhere that looks like so $blah = array(1,2,3,4); foreach ($blah as $i) echo ($i); and rename the variables but forget to do it correctly like so $apple = ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

What is a practical way to debug Rails?

I get the impression that in practice, debuggers are rarely used for Rails applications. (Likewise for other Ruby apps, as well as Python.) We can compare this to the usual practice for Java or ...
6
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6answers
1k views

What's a good approach to adding debug code to your application when you want more info about what's going wrong?

When our application doesn't work the way we expect it to (e.g. throws exceptions etc.), I usually insert a lot of debug code at certain points in the application in order to get a better overview of ...
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1answer
155 views

Is it okay to call exception-triggered debugging “post-mortem debugging”?

I heard the term "post-mortem debugging", and Wikipedia says it's debugging done after the program has crashed. I often debug Python apps using a debugger that stops execution once an ...
16
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10answers
2k views

Why not use the word bug instead of exception? [closed]

If we refer to exceptions as bugs, why not just call it a bug in the first place instead of an exception? If in the code it's called exception and as soon as it occurs it's called a bug. Then why not ...
14
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16answers
2k views

How to spend less time on debugging? [closed]

Following the Pareto rule, a programmer spends only 20% of his time for really useful things. I spend 80% of my time debugging, fixing small things to get everything working. Is there a way to spend ...
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4answers
343 views

Pesky bugs - nonexistant?

Very short introduction (this is quite a context-heavy question): I'm a 17 year old programmer, doing some projects, usually netting around 20 files of 200 lines each. I usually don't program very ...
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13answers
1k views

Can we guarantee a program will never go wrong?

We have a system here. Recently there is a wrong calculation in one of the number in the report generated by the system. Through out our experience, we've never encounter any problem/error in this ...
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5answers
234 views

Value of maintaining debug outputs

A developer on our team litters his code with debug outputs. He passes many parameters into methods that are only used for debugging. Personally I find this clutters up the code. If I need to debug ...
5
votes
2answers
194 views

Are there decent entry-level tutorials on debugging? [closed]

In the tags I frequent on Stack Overflow, a big chunk of questions should be answered with some basic knowledge about how to debug things - ie., teaching the OP to fish - instead of giving a fix for ...
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4answers
653 views

Have you ever found a bug you can't solve? What do you do in that case?

We're developing a hosted CMS, something like WordPress.com. When we were creating the Image Gallery module, we examined many jQuery libraries like easySlider, jCarousel, and Nivo Slider. But each of ...
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20answers
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How do you tackle really bizarre errors that keep you puzzled for more than 10 hours? [closed]

You know them, those errors that make NO sense. Where it seems like a gremlin just jumped deep inside your chips and messed up something. Do you take a walk, write stuff, call an uncle?
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5answers
323 views

Where to start fixing a complex bug?

I'm trying to solve a complex bug in our codebase , but the problem seems to be coming from a lot of places to the point that i dont know what to change first . do you have any procedure or ...
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21answers
6k views

“It was working yesterday, I swear!” What can you do? [closed]

When you arrive in the morning, you find that your software does not work anymore, even though it did when you left yesterday evening. What do you do? What do you check first? What do you do to stop ...
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3answers
280 views

Multitasking how to keep track of what you're doing

I'm in a long debugging task, I need to figure out where to hook up some extra functionality I need. It's cumbersome work, and I've been debugging 2 whole days, and I'm on my third, but I work in ...
3
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3answers
199 views

Supplying code to people helping you debug?

I was wondering if it is wise or advisable to send over a large amount of source code of one's application for debugging and error solving purposes, I'm working on an iOS app that I hope to release to ...
15
votes
4answers
912 views

How do I isolate difficult to reproduce bugs?

There's a bug in my program. Doesn't really matter what the platform is. Every so often, a row in a ListView is the wrong color. I tried setting a watchpoint for the variable that is supposed to ...
0
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2answers
309 views

Terminology question: Generalize Heisenbug

Is there some kind of generalization to the effect called Heisenbug? Because I would like to describe in my documentation how instrumenting a program changes the execution no matter what. In The New ...
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3answers
1k views

Debugging Facts and Statistics [closed]

I'm trying to find a research answering a question: "How much time developers spend on development vs debugging?". I found several interesting links on the Net but they are little too old. This 2002 ...
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4answers
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how to start fixing bugs in open source softwares

I a student and have good knowledge in C programming and like to contribute any open source project which is developed in C. I searched sourceforge and selected 7-Zip because its widely used one and ...
2
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2answers
217 views

Fixing sudden serious problem in software

For example, company that uses our software suddenly has found a serious bug and can't continue to work. The bug has exposed a big problem in software design and fixing it will take few days. What is ...
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5answers
1k views

Is possible to write too many asserts?

I am a big fan of writing assert checks in C++ code as a way to catch cases during development that cannot possibly happen but do happen because of logic bugs in my program. This is a good practice in ...
4
votes
13answers
854 views

Logging, do you do it? [closed]

Back on my theme of late: interview questions. Was recently asked to describe a time I'd used logging. My first instinct was to respond with compiler warnings set to full and error-out. What he was ...
12
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7answers
548 views

Why don't schools cover debuggers? [closed]

After yet another homework question on SO. It seems like that vast majority of students have no idea what a debugger is or how to use one. I feel that knowing how to use a debugger is almost as ...
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11answers
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What is the difference between debugging and testing?

Introduction To Software Testing (Ammann & Offutt) mentions on p.32 a 5-level testing maturity model: Level 0 There’s no difference between testing and debugging. Level 1 The purpose of testing ...
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9answers
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What to do when you have exhausted all avenues to fix a bug

I am a Junior Programmer(4 months career experience so far) working on a Cross Platform Mobile Application (1 person team - so its just myself). I have a bug in this program/app which is pretty large ...
11
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15answers
6k views

Real programmers use debuggers? [closed]

If experienced programmers actually ever use debuggers, and if so under what circumstances. Although in the answer to that question I said "months" ago I probably meant "years" - I really don't use a ...
7
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3answers
499 views

Un-Explainable Bugs?

I've encountered bugs that are extremely difficult to reproduce reliably and/or explain definitively, but that appear to be solved. When this happens, how much time should I spend chasing it down? ...
16
votes
11answers
595 views

How to teach your users/customers to send better error descriptions

I often have to deal with customers or users which are reporting errors in applications. Most of the time their content is something useless as ERROR!!! x does not work without much more ...
2
votes
3answers
175 views

How to Identify Bugs [closed]

Sometimes I come across something that doesn't entirely work right or just doesn't make sense to me and I often refrain from thinking it is a bug in the library or code I am using. For instance ...
14
votes
5answers
535 views

Should I release source code to fix bug

I have a bug in my application that I'm building. I asked a question on S.O. and one of the users asked me to post or send all the code to him so he could look at it. I totally understand the ...
9
votes
11answers
2k views

Turn away a bug if no reproducible test case exists? [duplicate]

If the customer has problems which are not reproducible because of complexity of actions they took and can't remember step by step, then coders are missing a test case. Indeed, this issue is ...
11
votes
13answers
980 views

What is the biggest trouble developers encounter when debugging?

I just wonder what is the biggest trouble developers encounter when debugging? I can think of three answers but I am not sure whether they are correct: Trouble in locating the bug? But most of the ...
4
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2answers
264 views

Open Source: Is Testing/Bug Reporting A Major Contribution?

When evaluating contributions to open source projects, does testing the code on various real-world inputs, reducing a large number of complicated bugs to small test cases and filing good bug reports ...
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2answers
941 views

What's better than outputdebugstring for windows debugging?

So, before I came to my current place of employment, the windows OutputDebugString function was completely unheard of, everyone was adding debug messages to string lists and saving them to file or ...