GCOV TUTORIAL PDF

By Steve Best on May 09, , Permalink Comments 0 Before releasing any amount of code, developers usually test their work to tune performance and prove that the software works as intended. But often, validation is quite difficult, even if the application is simple. If the test suite is thorough, all of the features of the code can be exercised and be shown to work. But how thorough is thorough? In theory, a completely thorough test suite would test all circumstances, validate all of the results, and exercise every single line of code, demonstrating that no code is "dead. Validating results can be done in any number of ways since output is typically tangible in one form or another, but how do you make sure that all of your code was executed?

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By Steve Best on May 09, , Permalink Comments 0 Before releasing any amount of code, developers usually test their work to tune performance and prove that the software works as intended. But often, validation is quite difficult, even if the application is simple. If the test suite is thorough, all of the features of the code can be exercised and be shown to work. But how thorough is thorough?

In theory, a completely thorough test suite would test all circumstances, validate all of the results, and exercise every single line of code, demonstrating that no code is "dead. Validating results can be done in any number of ways since output is typically tangible in one form or another, but how do you make sure that all of your code was executed? What is Code Coverage Analysis? In other cases, the test suite itself may have to be expanded to be more thorough.

Find the areas of a program not exercised by the test suite. Create additional test cases to exercise the dead code, thereby increasing code coverage. Determine a quantitative measure of code coverage, which is an indirect measure of quality.

Code coverage analysis is also useful to identify which test cases are appropriate to run when changes are made to a program and to identify which test cases do not increase coverage.

But no test does that for this error condition. No test coverage tool will tell you that this is needed. The test coverage tool can only identify the coverage on the code that exists. Similarly, loop coverage tries to verify that all paths through a loop have been tried. Loop coverage sounds complex, but actually can be verified by satisfying just three conditions: 1.

The loop condition yields false so the body is not executed. The loop condition is true the first time, then false, so execution of the body happens only once.

The loop condition is true at least two times, causing the loop to execute twice. For example, in the following code snippet

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What is coverage?

Use it in concert with GCC to analyze your programs to help create more efficient, faster running code and to discover untested parts of your program. You can use gcov as a profiling tool to help discover where your optimization efforts will best affect your code. You can also use gcov along with the other profiling tool, gprof, to assess which parts of your code use the greatest amount of computing time. Using a profiler such as gcov or gprof, you can find out some basic performance statistics, such as: how often each line of code executes what lines of code are actually executed how much computing time each section of code uses Once you know these things about how your code works when compiled, you can look at each module to see which modules should be optimized. Software developers also use coverage testing in concert with testsuites, to make sure software is actually good enough for a release. Testsuites can verify that a program works as expected; a coverage program tests to see how much of the program is exercised by the testsuite.

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LCOV - the LTP GCOV extension

Description[ edit ] gcov produces a test coverage analysis of a specially instrumented program. The options -fprofile-arcs -ftest-coverage should be used to compile the program for coverage analysis first option to record branch statistics and second to save line execution count ; -fprofile-arcs should also be used to link the program. It takes source files as command-line arguments and produces an annotated source listing. Each line of source code is prefixed with the number of times it has been executed; lines that have not been executed are prefixed with " ". This annotated source file can be used with gprof , another profiling tool, to extract timing information about the program.

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Analyzing Code Coverage with gcov

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