Software Code Clone Detection Using AST

International Journal of P2P Network Trends and Technology (IJPTT)          
© 2014 by IJPTT Journal
Volume - 4 Issue - 3 
Year of Publication : 2014
Authors : G. Anil kumar , Dr. C.R.K.Reddy , Dr. A. Govardhan


G. Anil kumar , Dr. C.R.K.Reddy , Dr. A. Govardhan."Software Code Clone Detection Using AST". International Journal of P2P Network Trends and Technology (IJPTT), V4(3):38-43 May - Jun 2014, ISSN:2249-2615,, Published by Seventh Sense Research Group.


The research which exists suggests that a considerable portion (10-15%) of the source code of large-scale computer programs is duplicate code. Detection and removal of such clones promises decreased software maintenance costs of possibly the same magnitude. Previous work was limited to detection of either near misses differing only in single lexemes, or near misses only between complete functions. This paper presents simple and practical methods for detecting exact and near miss clones over arbitrary program fragments in program source code by using abstract syntax trees. Previous work also did not suggest practical means for removing detected clones. Since our methods operate in terms of the program structure, clones could be removed by mechanical methods producing in-lined procedures or standard preprocessor macros.A tool using these techniques is applied to a C production software system of some 500K source lines, and the results confirm detected levels of duplication found by previous work. The tool produces macro bodies needed for clone removal, and macro invocations to replace the clones. The tool uses a variation of the well-known compiler method for detecting common sub-expressions. This method determines exact tree matches; a number of adjustments are needed to detect equivalent statement sequences, commutative operands, and nearly exact matches. We additionally suggest that clone detection could also be useful in producing more structured code, and in reverse engineering to discover domain concepts and their implementations.


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Software maintenance, clone detection, software evaluation, Design Maintenance System.