Partition-based regression verification

Marcel Böhme, Bruno C.D.S. Oliveira, Abhik Roychoudhury

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46 Citations (Scopus)


Regression verification (RV) seeks to guarantee the absence of regression errors in a changed program version. This paper presents Partition-based Regression Verification (PRV): an approach to RV based on the gradual exploration of differential input partitions. A differential input partition is a subset of the common input space of two program versions that serves as a unit of verification. Instead of proving the absence of regression for the complete input space at once, PRV verifies differential partitions in a gradual manner. If the exploration is interrupted, PRV retains partial verification guarantees at least for the explored differential partitions. This is crucial in practice as verifying the complete input space can be prohibitively expensive. Experiments show that PRV provides a useful alternative to state-of-the-art regression test generation techniques. During the exploration, PRV generates test cases which can expose different behaviour across two program versions. However, while test cases are generally single points in the common input space, PRV can verify entire partitions and moreover give feedback that allows programmers to relate a behavioral difference to those syntactic changes that contribute to this difference.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2013 35th International Conference on Software Engineering, ICSE 2013 - Proceedings
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Software Engineering 2013 - San Francisco, United States of America
Duration: 18 May 201326 May 2013
Conference number: 35th (Proceedings)


ConferenceInternational Conference on Software Engineering 2013
Abbreviated titleICSE 2013
Country/TerritoryUnited States of America
CitySan Francisco
Internet address


  • Software Verification
  • Testing and Analysis

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