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10 Best Practices For Peer Code Review

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Peer code review has proven to be the pinnacle of software quality assurance, but the top 10 best practices of peer code review are not what you'd think. These numbers do not lie.

Published in: Software
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10 Best Practices For Peer Code Review

  1. 1. 1@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 10 BEST PRACTICES FOR PEER CODE REVIEW 1@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview
  2. 2. 2@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 1. Review Fewer Than 400 Lines Of Code At A Time • Reviewing 200-400 lines of code over 60 to 90 minutes, should yield 70-90% defect discovery. • Reading beyond 400 lines of code, the ability to find defects diminishes
  3. 3. 3@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview
  4. 4. 4@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 2. Aim For An Inspection Rate Of Less Than 300-500 Lines Of Code Per Hour Code reviews that happen in a reasonable quantity and at a slower pace for a limited amount of time results in the most effective code review.
  5. 5. 5@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview
  6. 6. 6@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 3. Do Not Review For More Than 60 Minutes At A Time • Performance starts dropping off after about 60 minutes of work – reviewers wear out and stop finding defects. • Studies show that taking breaks over a period of time can improve the quality of work.
  7. 7. 7@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 4. Authors Should Annotate Source Code Before The Review Begin • Annotations should be directed at other reviewers to ease the process and provide more depth in context. • As an added benefit, the author will often find additional errors before the peer review even begins. • More bugs found prior to peer review will yield in lower defect density because fewer bugs exist overall.
  8. 8. 8@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview
  9. 9. 9@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 5. Set Quantifiable Goals & Capture Metrics To Improve Processes • Decide in advance the goals of the code review process and how you will effectively measure them. • Include internal process metrics such as inspection rate, defect rate, and defect density.
  10. 10. 10@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 6. Use A Checklist For Both Reviewers & Authors Checklists are the most effective way to eliminate frequently made errors and to combat the challenges of omission finding.
  11. 11. 11@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 7. Establish A Process For Fixing Defects Found To ensure that bugs get fixed, use a collaborative code review tool that allows reviewers to log bugs, discuss them with the author and approve changes.
  12. 12. 12@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 8. Foster A Positive Code Review Culture • In order for peer code review to be successful, it’s extremely important that mangers create a culture of collaboration and learning in peer review. • Peer review also allows junior team members to learn from senior leaders and for even the most experienced programmers to break bad habits.
  13. 13. 13@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 9. Embrace The Subconscious Implications Of Peer Review • "Spot checking" 20% to 33% of the code resulted in lower defect density with minimal time expenditure. • Lessen the likelihood of the “Big Brother” effect by using metrics & reports to help improve a developers work
  14. 14. 14@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview 10. Practice Lightweight Code Reviews • To fully optimize your team´s time and to effectively measure its results, a lightweight, tool-assisted process is recommended. • Lightweight code review takes less than 20% the time of formal reviews and finds just as many bugs
  15. 15. 15@SmartBear @CollaboratorSB #CodeReview With the right tools and best practices, your team can peer review all of your code! FREE TRIAL

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