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  1. null (Ed.)
    Generate-and-validate (G&V) automated program repair (APR) techniques have been extensively studied during the past decade. Meanwhile, such techniques can be extremely time-consuming due to the manipulation of program code to fabricate a large number of patches and also the repeated test executions on patches to identify potential fixes. PraPR, a recent G&V APR technique, reduces such costs by modifying program code directly at the level of compiled JVM bytecode with on-the-fly patch validation, which directly allows multiple bytecode patches to be tested within the same JVM process. However, PraPR is limited due to its unique bytecode-repair design, and is basically unsound/imprecise as it assumes that patch executions do not change global JVM state and affect later patch executions on the same JVM process. In this paper, we propose a unified patch validation framework, named UniAPR, to perform the first empirical study of on-the-fly patch validation for state-of-the-art source-code-level APR techniques widely studied in the literature; furthermore, UniAPR addresses the imprecise patch validation issue by resetting the JVM global state via runtime bytecode transformation. We have implemented UniAPR as a publicly available fully automated Maven Plugin. Our study demonstrates for the first time that on-the-fly patch validation can often speed up state-of-the-art source-code-level APR by over an order of magnitude, enabling all existing APR techniques to explore a larger search space to fix more bugs in the near future. Furthermore, our study shows the first empirical evidence that vanilla on-the-fly patch validation can be imprecise/unsound, while UniAPR with JVM reset is able to mitigate such issues with negligible overhead. 
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  2. In modern software development, software libraries play a crucial role in reducing software development effort and improving software quality. However, at the same time, the asynchronous upgrades of software libraries and client software projects often result in incompatibilities between different versions of libraries and client projects. When libraries evolve, it is often very challenging for library developers to maintain the so-called backward compatibility and keep all their external behavior untouched, and behavioral backward incompatibilities (BBIs) may occur. In practice, the regression test suites of library projects often fail to detect all BBIs. Therefore, in this paper, we propose DeBBI to detect BBIs via cross-project testing and analysis, i.e., using the test suites of various client projects to detect library BBIs. Since executing all the possible client projects can be extremely time consuming, DeBBI transforms the problem of cross-project BBI detection into a traditional information retrieval (IR) problem to execute the client projects with higher probability to detect BBIs earlier. Furthermore, DeBBI considers project diversity and test relevance information for even faster BBI detection. The experimental results show that DeBBI can reduce the end-to-end testing time for detecting the first and average unique BBIs by 99.1% and 70.8% for JDK compared to naive cross-project BBI detection. Also, DeBBI has been applied to other popular 3rd-party libraries. To date, DeBBI has detected 97 BBI bugs with 19 already confirmed as previously unknown bugs. 
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  3. Mutation testing is a powerful technique for evaluating the quality of test suite which plays a key role in ensuring software quality. The concept of mutation testing has also been widely used in other software engineering studies, e.g., test generation, fault localization, and program repair. During the process of mutation testing, large number of mutants may be generated and then executed against the test suite to examine whether they can be killed, making the process extremely computational expensive. Several techniques have been proposed to speed up this process, including selective, weakened, and predictive mutation testing. Among those techniques, Predictive Mutation Testing (PMT) tries to build a classification model based on an amount of mutant execution records to predict whether coming new mutants would be killed or alive without mutant execution, and can achieve significant mutation cost reduction. In PMT, each mutant is represented as a list of features related to the mutant itself and the test suite, transforming the mutation testing problem to a binary classification problem. In this paper, we perform an extensive study on the effectiveness and efficiency of the promising PMT technique under the cross-project setting using a total 654 real world projects with more than 4 Million mutants. Our work also complements the original PMT work by considering more features and the powerful deep learning models. The experimental results show an average of over 0.85 prediction accuracy on 654 projects using cross validation, demonstrating the effectiveness of PMT. Meanwhile, a clear speed up is also observed with an average of 28.7× compared to traditional mutation testing with 5 threads. In addition, we analyze the importance of different groups of features in classification model, which provides important implications for the future research. 
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