Facebook Offers New Mobile Code Testing Tool to Identify Bugs before Shipping

By CIOReview | Thursday, June 18, 2015

FREMONT, CA: Facebook tends to move fast by shipping software the moment it is ready rather than going for an elaborate manual testing process. However, this approach is dangerous on a mobile platform than on the web. Keeping this in mind, Facebook has come up with Infer, a static code analyzer to spot bugs in mobile programs before they are shipped off to serve users.

When a bug is identified on the web, a fix is immediately shipped to servers, whereas in mobiles for a bug fix, people have to update their apps. Integrating static analysis with automated tests helps Facebook to move fast on mobile as the crashes and memory leaks are identified and dealt with before they are shipped.

Facebook Infer runs systematically, analyzing code modifications to the source code of their app when submitted by developers for review. In the present deployment model, the analyzer is run on the Android and Objective-C code for the apps. Infer is also capable of scanning C code and non-Android Java code. The tool itself is written in OCaml.

Facebook recently said that it expects the open source community to help the company extend its capabilities and put it to more uses as currently it is providing binaries only for Mac OS X and 64-bit Linux.