Help Articles

Introduction to NDepend : Static Code Analysis Tool

June 16, 2018 .NET, .NET Core, .NET Framework, ASP.NET, Best Practices, C#.NET, Code Analysis, Code Quality, Dynamic Analysis, Emerging Technologies, Help Articles, Microsoft, Static Analysis, Tech-Trends, Tools, Tools, Visual Studio 2017, VisualStudio, Windows No comments , , , , , ,

As a developer, you always have to take the pain of getting adapted to the best practices and coding guidelines to be followed as per the organizational or industrial standards.  Easy way to ensure your coding style follows certain standard is to manually analyze your code or use a static code analyzer like FxCop, StyleCop etc. Earlier days I have been a fan of FxCop as it was free and it provides me all necessary general guidelines in terms  of improving my solution.

In this modern world of programming everything needs to be automated, as it saves time and money in terms of automating repetitive tasks and improves efficiency. This is where static code analysers coming effective.

What is Static Code Analysis?

Static program analysis is the analysis of computer software that is performed without actually executing programs, on some version of the program source code, and in the other cases, some form of the object code or intermediate compiled code .

Sophistication of static program analysis increases is based on how deep they analyze in terms of behavior of individual statements and declarations, to analyzing the entire source code.

PS: Analysis performed on executing programs is known as dynamic analysis.

In this article I will give you an overview of one such premier static code analysis tool that can be used for your daily development routine plus use it for CI integration for DevOps efficiency.

NDepend:

NDepend is a static analysis tool for .NET, specifically for managed code:  NDepdend supports a large number of code metrics, allowing to visualize dependencies using directed graphs and dependency matrix. It also performs code base snapshots comparisons, and validation of architectural and quality rules.

The important capabilities of NDepend are:

  • Dependency Visualization through dependency matrix and graphs.
  • Analyse and generate software quality metrics – as per the documentation it supports 82 quality metrices.
  • Declarative rule support through LINQ queries, and it is called CQLinq and comes with a large number of predefined CQLinq rules.
  • Integration support for Cruise Control.Net, SonarCube, am City. Code rules can be configured to be checked automatically in Visual Studio or during continuous integration(CI).

License: NDepend is a commercial tool with licensing options as below:

  1. Developer seats – $477 approx. / per seat.
  2. Build Machine seats  – $955 approx. / per seat.

** You could get volume discount if you bulk procure your licenses.

Installation: 

Once you obtained license you will able to download NDepend_2018.1.1.9041.zip, is latest version available while I write this article. Extract the zip file into your local folder, you could see the different packages/executables within the package.

image

1.) NDepend.Console    – Command line program to execute NDepend analysis.  You would be mostly using this component on CI Build server Help

2.) NDepend.PowerTools –  Helps write your own static analyzer based on NDepend.API, or tweak existing open-source Power Tools. Help

image

3.) NDepend.VisualStudioExtension.Installer – To install NDepend extension as part of Visual studio

image

4.) VisualNDepend – Independent visual environment for managing your NDepend tasks.

image

Visual Tool gives you different options to choose from:

  • You can analyse a Visual Studio Solution or project.
  • Analyse .NET assemblies in a folder.

image

image

image

For the demo purpose our analysis target would be one of the starter project from github –  ContosoUniversity by @alimon808.

image

image

Demo: Summary Report

image

Demo: Application Metrics

image

Demo: Dependency Dashboard:

image

Demo: Interactive Graph

image

Demo: Code Matrix View

image

Demo: Quality Gates Summary

image

Demo: Rules Summary

image

Conclusion:

NDepend is one of the best enterprise grade commercial static analyser seen so far.  There are Visual Studio Code Analysis, FxCop and Stylecop Analyzer tools available but they do not provide extensive level of analysis reports NDepend provides. Being a commercial tool it gives value for money for customers by what they need.  In terms of a day to day developer  or devops lifecycle, you can integrate NDepend in your build process, which could be simple as executing the NDepend Console and reviewing the output. With NDepend’s API it is easy to develop your own custom analysis tools based on CQLinq and NDepend.PowerTools(which is open source). You could find all the detailed help in NDepend documentation.

References:

Learn using the Windows Phone 8 Jump Start Training content–for Online or Offline view–Courtesy Channel9

December 18, 2012 .NET, .NET Framework, All, Community, Help Articles, KnowledgeBase, Microsoft, Microsoft Learning, Microsoft SDKs, MSDN, PodCasts, Training-Kits, VisualStudio, VS2012, Windows, Windows Phone, Windows Phone 7.0, Windows Phone 7.1 SDK, Windows Phone 7.5, Windows Phone 7.8, Windows Phone 8, Windows Phone 8.0 SDK, Windows Phone Development, Windows Phone SDK, Windows Phone Store No comments

On November 28-29th 2012, Microsoft has hosted the Windows Phone 8 Jump Start training, a fast-paced and demo-packed learning ‘experience’ tailored to show developers how to build responsive, appealing, and effective applications quickly.

If you missed this outstanding event, you’re in luck. All 20 modules are now available online for your on-demand viewing, (or download) on Channel 9.

Here’s a full outline of the course that was delivered, with direct links to each module. For those of you who are new to the world of Windows Phone, this is a great way to start developing apps right away.

Courtesy: Channel9.MSDN.com

Source – Windows Phone Dev Blog

Zip(Archive) API’s in .NET Framework 4.5 – Part 2 – ZipFile Class

October 22, 2012 .NET, .NET Framework, .NET Framework 4.5, All, Back-2-Bascis, BCL(Base Class Library), C#.NET, Codes, CodeSnippets, DevLabs, Foundations, Help Articles, KnowledgeBase, Microsoft, Updates, VB.NET, VisualStudio, VS2012, Windows No comments

In my previous post I shared some information on API’s/Classes included as part of System.IO.Compression namespace in .NET Framework 4.5, and given on overview of ZipArchive class. Once such class I would be sharing some insight with post today would be ‘ZipFile‘ class. The ZipFile class provides convenient static methods for working with zip archives:

  1. CreateFromDirectory (3 overloads) – Creates a zip archive that contains the files and directories from the specified directory, uses the specified compression level and character encoding for entry names, and optionally includes the base directory.
  2. ExtractToDirectory ( 3 overloads) – Extracts all the files in the specified zip archive to a directory on the file system and uses the specified character encoding for entry names.
  3. Open (2 overloads) – Opens a zip archive at the specified path, in the specified mode, and by using the specified character encoding for entry names.
  4. OpenRead  – Opens a zip archive for reading at the specified path.

 

To use these methods, you must reference the System.IO.Compression.FileSystem assembly in your project.

image

NB:

  • The System.IO.Compression.FileSystem assembly is not available for Windows Store apps. Therefore, the ZipFile class and ZipFileExtensions class (which is also in the System.IO.Compression.FileSystem assembly) are not available in Windows Store apps.
  • In Windows Store apps, you work with compressed files by using the methods in the ZipArchive, ZipArchiveEntry, DeflateStream, and GZipStream classes.

 

Now the time for creating some sample application.

For the purpose of explaining how to use the above methods – I followed the below steps :

  1. Created a console application in visual studio.
  2. Added Reference to System.IO.Compression and System.IO.Compression.FileSystem assemblies which is part of .NET Framework 4.5.
  3. Created a folder called “Files” and created some plain text files(.txt extension) , this would be out source folder to zip. And created two additional folder for storing zip files(Output) and ExtractLocation folder to extract the zip files.
  4.  image image
  5. and the below sample code snippet is the implementation/usage.
<code>&lt;p&gt;Sample code snippet:&lt;/p&gt; &lt;div&gt; &lt;pre class="brush: c#;"&gt;
</code>

namespace ConsoleApp02
{
class Program
{
static void Main(string[] args)
{
// AppDomain.CurrentDomain.BaseDirectory refers to the
//folder in which the executable or binaries are executing.
// E.g. ConsoleApp02ConsoleApp02binDebug
string startPath = AppDomain.CurrentDomain.BaseDirectory + "\Files";
string zipPath = AppDomain.CurrentDomain.BaseDirectory + "\Output";
string zipFilePath = zipPath + "\" + System.Guid.NewGuid().ToString() + ".zip";

<code>        string extractPath = AppDomain.CurrentDomain.BaseDirectory + &amp;quot;\ExtractLocation&amp;quot;;

        //just a fail-safe to create folders if not exists.
        if (!Directory.Exists(zipFilePath))
            Directory.CreateDirectory(zipFilePath);

        if (!Directory.Exists(extractPath))
            Directory.CreateDirectory(extractPath);

        //Creating a zipFile from folder
        ZipFile.CreateFromDirectory(startPath, zipFilePath);

        //Unzipping a zipFile to a folder
        ZipFile.ExtractToDirectory(zipFilePath, extractPath);

        //
        Console.WriteLine(&amp;quot;Press Any key to exit...&amp;quot;);

        Console.ReadKey();
    }
}
</code>

}

Hope this post is informative. Please keep share this post and give your comments/feedback. Happy coding!