Large-Scale Enterprise Systems: Changes and Impacts

  • Wen Chen
  • Asif Iqbal
  • Akbar Abdrakhmanov
  • Jay Parlar
  • Chris George
  • Mark Lawford
  • Tom Maibaum
  • Alan Wassyng
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP, volume 141)


Changes and their impacts to large-scale enterprise systems are critical and hard to identify and calculate. This work focuses on analysing changes and their potential impacts, and in particular on how regression testing following such changes can be minimised. The target scope of the approach we describe here is systems containing hundreds of thousands of classes and millions of methods. It is extremely difficult and costly to apply regular regression testing techniques to such systems. It is very expensive and often unnecessary to retest everything after a change is introduced. Selective retesting is dangerous if the impacts of change are not understood, and analysing such systems to understand what is being changed and what the impacts are is difficult. This paper proposes a way to perform a change impact analysis which makes it possible to do efficient, targeted regression testing of enterprise systems. Our approach has been tried on a large system comprising 4.6 million methods with 10 million dependencies between them. Using our approach, maintainers can focus on a smaller, relevant subset of their test suites instead of doing testing blindly. We include a case study that illustrates the savings that can be attained.


Large-scale enterprise systems Impact analysis Static analysis Dependency graph 



The authors are grateful to Ron Mison, Sundaram Viswanathan, and Vinayak Viswanathan of Legacy Systems International, for introducing us to the problem, and also for working with us to ensure that our research produces practical methods and tools. We also thank John Hatcliff for his advice and for pointing us to relevant work, and Wolfram Kahl for his technical advice throughout the project.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wen Chen
    • 1
  • Asif Iqbal
    • 1
  • Akbar Abdrakhmanov
    • 1
  • Jay Parlar
    • 1
  • Chris George
    • 1
  • Mark Lawford
    • 1
  • Tom Maibaum
    • 1
  • Alan Wassyng
    • 1
  1. 1.McMaster Centre for Software CertificationMcMaster UniversityHamiltonCanada

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