A Case Study of Refactoring Large-Scale Industrial Systems to Efficiently Improve Source Code Quality

  • Gábor Szőke
  • Csaba Nagy
  • Rudolf Ferenc
  • Tibor Gyimóthy
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8583)


Refactoring source code has many benefits (e.g. improving maintainability, robustness and source code quality), but it takes time away from other implementation tasks, resulting in developers neglecting refactoring steps during the development process. But what happens when they know that the quality of their source code needs to be improved and they can get the extra time and money to refactor the code? What will they do? What will they consider the most important for improving source code quality? What sort of issues will they address first or last and how will they solve them? In our paper, we look for answers to these questions in a case study of refactoring large-scale industrial systems where developers participated in a project to improve the quality of their software systems. We collected empirical data of over a thousand refactoring patches for 5 systems with over 5 million lines of code in total, and we found that developers really optimized the refactoring process to significantly improve the quality of these systems.


software engineering refactoring software quality 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gábor Szőke
    • 1
  • Csaba Nagy
    • 1
  • Rudolf Ferenc
    • 1
  • Tibor Gyimóthy
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Software EngineeringUniversity of SzegedHungary

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