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Code signing and user hinting

By , December 22, 2009 4:57 pm

We have just released new versions of our software tools that are code signed.

This change will please those of you that are using more recent operating systems that will ask your permission to start an executable that is not signed by a company that you trust. No more warnings for Vista and Windows 7 users!

We have also introduced a new user hinting feature that provides some general guidance on what to do next using unused space on the user interface. This user hinting came about as a result of some usability testing we did during November. We hope you find this useful, if not for yourself, but your colleagues when introduced to the software.

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Support for MinGW and QtCreator

By , December 4, 2009 5:01 pm

Everyone uses Visual Studio to write C and C++ software don’t they? Yes! you all chorus. Apart from some guys at the back who like to use gcc and g++. They use MinGW when working on Windows. And they may even use Emacs, or perish the thought, vi!

Up until now we haven’t been able to cater to the needs of gcc and g++ users. We’d get email every month asking when we were going to support MinGW or if we supported QtCreator. It was frustrating admitting we couldn’t support that environment. Even more so as the founders of Software Verification wrote large GIS applications using gcc and g++ back in the early 1990s.

During October we integrated support for MinGW and QtCreator into Coverage Validator, Memory Validator, Performance Validator and Thread Validator. Both COFF and STABS debug formats are supported, which provides some flexibility in how you choose to handle your symbols.

We’ll continue to add support for additional compilers to our tools as long as there is interest from you, the kind people that use our software tools.

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Got a crash with a strange pointer value?

By , December 4, 2009 5:00 pm

Ever had a crash with a pointer value of 0xcdcdcdcd or 0xdddddddd or 0xfeeefeee?

You have? Sooner or later when you work with C or C++ you’ll bump into one of these crashes. You will no doubt try to reproduce the crash and thats when you’ll probably notice this unusual value has repeated itself. Perhaps the value is significant, perhaps it is telling you something?

I’ve has just written an article about the unusual bit patterns you can find in variables on the stack or in the various Win32 heaps or in the CRT heap. The article closes with some suggestions on how to prevent these errors from occurring.

A few minutes spent reading about the bit patterns may help you see these bit patterns less frequently and dig you out of any 0xfeeefeee hole you may have fallen into.

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