SANER 2017

2017 IEEE 24th International Conference on Software Analysis, Evolution, and Reengineering (SANER), February 20-24, 2017, Klagenfurt, Austria

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MSR and Open Source
Main Research
An Empirical Comparison of Dependency Issues in OSS Packaging Ecosystems
Alexandre Decan, Tom Mens, and Maëlick Claes
(University of Mons, Belgium)
Abstract: Nearly every popular programming language comes with one or more open source software packaging ecosystem(s), containing a large collection of interdependent software packages developed in that programming language. Such packaging ecosystems are extremely useful for their respective software development community. We present an empirical analysis of how the dependency graphs of three large packaging ecosystems (npm, CRAN and RubyGems) evolve over time. We study how the existing package dependencies impact the resilience of the three ecosystems over time and to which extent these ecosystems suffer from issues related to package dependency updates. We analyse specific solutions that each ecosystem has put into place and argue that none of these solutions is perfect, motivating the need for better tools to deal with package dependency update problems.


Time stamp: 2020-02-28T21:31:26+01:00