Creating an instrumented project

This chapter contains recipes for setting up a software project for instrumentation. The methods depend on the languages and the development environments. Here we show how to create a new software project so that it is prepared for instrumentation. This is another simple way to get acquainted with Coco.

A description of a larger project can be found in Code coverage for a Qt application.

C++ on Microsoft Visual Studio using the Visual Studio Coco Wizard

The add-in for Microsoft® Visual Studio® (see The Visual Studio Coco Wizard) supports working with Coco.

C# on Microsoft Visual Studio

Start Microsoft Visual Studio and create a new C# application:

  1. Click File > New > Project to open the new project wizard.
  2. Choose the Console App template for C# Windows.
  3. Enter the project name squishcoco_sample, and then click the Next button.
  4. When the wizard's second page appears, click the Finish button.

To activate the instrumentation, use the project properties:

  1. In Solution Explorer, select Properties in the context menu.
  2. Select Build.
  3. In Conditional compilation symbols, enter COVERAGESCANNER_COVERAGE_ON.

The code coverage analysis is enabled when the symbol COVERAGESCANNER_COVERAGE_ON is defined from the command line.

Build the squish_coco project. This will cause the executable squishcoco_sample.exe to be built and the code coverage instrumentation file squishcoco_sample.exe.csmes to be generated. Double-click squishcoco_sample.exe.csmes to inspect this file in CoverageBrowser.

Right now there are no code coverage statistics to be seen in CoverageBrowser because the application has not yet been executed. Click Program.cs in the source list to display the main function. All the instrumented lines are shown grayed out to indicate that nothing has been executed.

Now execute squishcoco_sample.exe by double-clicking it. This will result in a file called squishcoco_sample.exe.csexe being generated. This file contains a code coverage snapshot which can be imported into CoverageBrowser:

  1. Click File > Load Execution Report.
  2. Select the File item and enter the path of the squishcoco_sample.exe.csexe file.
  3. Click the Import button.

This will cause the code coverage statistics to be updated. Now, in the source code window, the main function's return statement will be colored green to indicate that this line has been executed.

Command line tools

Open a console window (MS-DOS Prompt or Command Prompt window on Windows) and make sure that the Microsoft Visual Studio compiler (cl.exe) or GCC is installed on your system.

Create a simple hello.c source file that contains the following code:

#include <stdio.h>

int main(int argc, char *argv[])
   return 0;

Compile this program using the CoverageScanner compiler wrapper instead of the native compiler. This is done by prepending cs to the command line compiler's name:

With Microsoft Visual StudioWith GCC
$ cscl.exe hello.c /Fehello.exe$ csgcc hello.c -o hello.exe

The executable hello.exe and the file hello.exe.csmes, which contains the code coverage instrumentation, will be generated.

Execute hello.exe to generate hello.exe.csexe. It contains a code coverage snapshot which can be imported into hello.exe.csmes using cmcsexeimport:

$ cmcsexeimport --title="Hello execution" -m hello.exe.csmes -e hello.exe.csexe

Once imported, the hello.exe.csexe file is no longer needed and can be deleted. Now hello.exe.csmes contains a single execution record. We can generate an HTML report with cmreport:

$ cmreport --title="Hello application" -m hello.exe.csmes --html=hello.html

Here is a summary of the command line options that were used in this command:

  • --title="Hello application": Set a title for the report. It appears on all generated HTML pages.
  • -m hello.exe.csmes: Select the instrumentation database.
  • --html=hello.html: Specify the name of the HTML file that the report should be written to.