VTrace-A Tool for Visualizing Traceability Links among Software Artefacts for an Evolving System

C J Satish, Anand M


Traceability Management plays a key role in tracing the life of a requirement through all the specifications produced during the development phase of a software project. A lack of traceability information not only hinders the understanding of the system but also will prove to be a bottleneck in the future maintenance of the system. Projects that maintain traceability information during the development stages somehow fail to upgrade their artefacts or maintain traceability among the different versions of the artefacts that are produced during the maintenance phase. As a result the software artefacts lose the trustworthiness and engineers mostly work from the source code for impact analysis. The goal of our research is on understanding the impact of visualizing traceability links on change management tasks for an evolving system. As part of our research we have implemented a Traceability Visualization Tool-VTrace that manages software artefacts and also enables the visualization of traceability links. The results of our controlled experiment show that subjects who used the tool were more accurate and faster on change management tasks than subjects that didn’t use the tool.


traceability management software maintenance, software engineering, software documentation, traceability visualization

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11591/eei.v6i2.652


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