On the relation of refactorings and software defect prediction

TitleOn the relation of refactorings and software defect prediction
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsSigmund, T, Gall, HC, Ratzinger, J
Tertiary AuthorsHassan, AE, Lanza, M, Godfrey, MW
Secondary TitleProceedings of the 2008 international workshop on Mining software repositories - MSR '08
Date Published05/2008
PublisherACM Press
Place PublishedNew York, New York, USA
ISBN Number9781605580241
Keywordsargouml, bug fixing, bug reports, defects, evolution, jboss, liferay, prediction, refactoring, spring, weka, xdoclet

This paper analyzes the influence of evolution activities such as refactoring on software defects. In a case study of five open source projects we used attributes of software evolution to predict defects in time periods of six months. We use versioning and issue tracking systems to extract 110 data mining features, which are separated into refactoring and non-refactoring related features. These features are used as input into classification algorithms that create prediction models for software defects. We found out that refactoring related features as well as non-refactoring related features lead to high quality prediction models. Additionally, we discovered that refactorings and defects have an inverse correlation: The number of software defects decreases, if the number of refactorings increased in the preceding time period. As a result, refactoring should be a significant part of both bug fixes and other evolutionary changes to reduce software defects.

Full Text
PDF icon p35-ratzinger.pdf228.13 KB