Software quality analysis and measurement tool provider CAST has added a new Delivery Management Tool (DMT) to CAST Application Intelligence Platform (AIP) 7.1 to help enterprise developers analyze, measure and track their applications’ quality. The DMT is a source-code delivery-automation tool that lets developers upload their source code directly to CAST AIP 7.1, as well as provide source-code management for software projects.

CAST AIP 7.1 helps enterprise developers make sure that the source code in their applications is compliant with industry best practices, according to Olivier Bonsignour, executive vice president of product development at CAST. “The way we do that is by analyzing the source code of the applications and extracting metadata from the analysis, and then running a set of quality rules to determine if the source code is compliant,” he said.

Bonsignour said what CAST is doing is different from what other providers do because CAST AIP 7.1 is measuring at the application level, not just at the source-code level. “So we can identify structural or architectural defects in an application, whereas when you focus just on source code, you can only identify things that are on the functional level,” he said.

CAST AIP 7.1 contains a set of best practices that are directly related to the architecture of applications, including, for example, those regarding performance and memory allocation. “In terms of performance, we have best practices around data access, and the right way to leverage a database…in an application when you are using a specific framework to access that database, like .NET,” he said.

Development teams can receive a list from CAST AIP 7.1 of all the pieces in their application’s source code that violate quality rules, according to Bonsignour. “We apply each quality rule against the source code; each of these rules produce what we call violations,” he said. “Every piece of source code that is not compliant will be flagged as noncompliant so that development teams can fix the issue.”
Bonsignour said that one of the biggest difficulties the company has seen with development teams is related to source-code management. When a development team is working on a new project, they all know where the latest source code is. But when it’s a four-year-old application, he said it becomes more difficult for developers to keep track of all the source code that is in all the versions of an application and in all the different libraries.

To solve this problem, Bonsignour said the new DMT gives developers an automated source-code-management capability that was not provided by earlier versions. “Previously, we were asking people to deliver the source code to the platform,” he explained.

“But what we are introducing in this version of CAST AIP is the ability to automatically discover all the different pieces of code that are part of an application. We analyze the property files and the different project files—including Visual Studio project files—and identify all the different pieces of code in order to correctly analyze the application.”