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ISSTA 2018
Sun 15 - Sat 21 July 2018 Amsterdam, Netherlands
co-located with ECOOP and ISSTA 2018

We present repositioning of alarms, a novel automatic postprocessing technique intended to reduce the number of reported alarms without affecting the errors uncovered by them. The reduction in the number of alarms is achieved by moving groups of related alarms along the control flow to a program point where they can be replaced by a single alarm. In the repositioning technique, as the locations of repositioned alarms are different than locations of the errors uncovered by them, we also maintain traceability links between a repositioned alarm and its corresponding original alarm(s). The presented technique is tool-agnostic and orthogonal to many other techniques available for postprocessing alarms.

To evaluate the technique, we applied it as a postprocessing step to alarms generated for 4 verification properties on 16 open source and 4 industry applications. The results indicate that the alarms repositioning technique reduces the alarms count by up to 20% over the state-of-the-art alarms grouping techniques with a median reduction of 7.25%.