Revisiting "Programmers' Build Errors" in the Visual Studio Context

Authors - Noam Rabbani, Michael S. Harvey, Sadnan Saquif, Keheliya Gallaba, Shane McIntosh
Venue - International Conference on Mining Software Repositories, Mining challenge, pp. To appear, 2018

Related Tags - MSR 2018 build systems build breakage

Abstract - Build systems translate sources into deliverables. Developers execute builds on a regular basis in order to integrate their personal code changes into testable deliverables. Prior studies have evaluated the rate at which builds in large organizations fail. A recent study at Google has analyzed (among other things) the rate at which builds in developer workspaces fail. In this paper, we replicate the Google study in the Visual Studio context of the MSR challenge. We extract and analyze 13,300 build events, observing that builds are failing 67%–76% less frequently and are fixed 46%–78% faster in our study context. Our results suggest that build failure rates are highly sensitive to contextual factors. Given the large number of factors by which our study contexts differ (e.g., system size, team size, IDE tooling, programming languages), it is not possible to trace the root cause for the large differences in our results. Additional data is needed to arrive at more complete conclusions.

Preprint - PDF


  Author = {Noam Rabbani and Michael S. Harvey and Sadnan Saquif and Keheliya Gallaba and Shane McIntosh},
  Title = {{Revisiting "Programmers' Build Errors" in the Visual Studio Context}},
  Year = {2018},
  Booktitle = {Proc. of the International Conference on Mining Software Repositories (MSR)},
  Pages = {To appear}