Posted by & filed under Announcements.

With build 476 we are adding an exciting new capability to User Tools. The ability to perform operations directly in the editor. In the the User Tool configuration menu (Tools | Configure User Tools), there are two new fields, Input and Output. As you might expect, the Input field lets you select what text you want to feed into your tool, and the output field lets you choose where you want the output redirected. Read more »

Posted by & filed under Announcements, Scitools Labs.

We’ve made several changes to the Understand Perl API recently. The largest change was upgrading from Perl 5.6.0 to 5.10.0 in build 473.
In addition to several cool new features like the smart match operators and switch statements, Perl 5.10 runs faster and has a smaller memory footprint. For more details on what the changes are and how to use
them, see the Perl 5.10 Release Announcement.

We are also in the process of adding Snapshot support for the Perl API for build 476. Now you can access historical versions of the code through your scripts as well. For example you can compare versions of files or write a script to compare metrics between versions. Read more »

Posted by & filed under Scitools Labs.


We’ve had dependency analysis in Understand for many years.  With B471 of Understand 2.0 we have consolidated it into a functional area of the tool, improved what it does and also added a few new dependency views.

The Dependency Analysis capability provides these features:

  • rapid browsing of dependencies for files and Understand architectures
  • Dependents, Depends On, and Butterfly graphs for files and architectures
  • Spreadsheet export of dependency relationships
  • A new Dependency Browsing dock that shows all depedency information

Read on to learn more about the Dependency Analysis capability and what we plan for it.

Or watch the video here.

Read more »

Posted by & filed under Tips.

About 1/2 our engineers program on Linux. A couple use the Mac. And the rest use Windows.

On Linux and the Mac it is quite common to have command line GDB session in use for debugging and to need to inspect or walk a call stack from the “where” command.  It is a bit of a pain to have these separated from Understand. And we may (if we can figure out the Windows side) add debugging support directly into Understand, but until here is a tip that makes working with GDB a bit easier.

With B465 you paste any text into a command result window (get one by choosing “Options->Run a command”).  Once pasted, we analyze it for file, line and entity names and it becomes clickable for Understand events and menus.

Here is a GDB call stack pasted in:


Files and lines are identified so I can visit them in Understand, or right click and get information and graphs.

Also, with B465 we have made file detection much smarter. It will recognize short, relative and full path names and associate line numbers with them in any fashion a compiler or other tool can think to spit them out.


Posted by & filed under Tips.

Searching in graphs has been on my Understand wish list since we first added graphs – 10 years ago!

So I’m quite happy to report that Understand 2.0 Build 466 has searching in graphs. To search in a graph just hit the binocular button and enter in the search text. It is incremental. As you type, it matches. Hit return to move to the next, or use the green arrows. The graph will center to the next match. Searches will find on node labels and edge labels (if the graph has them).

Here I search a large call tree for “inflate”:

31 2008-12-30 13.51


Posted by & filed under Tips.

Your code is beautiful, formatted to your liking and spaced just how you want it, but sometimes you have to work with other people’s code – yuck! If only there was something that would make it look like your code, instead of spaghetti. Artistic Style, or astyle as it is also known, is a great open source application that does exactly that.

So you can quickly turn this:


Into this:


We plan on implementing astyle into the editor at some point in the future, but I’m not so patient, and I decided to use our plugin mechanism to do it now, and will show you how.

Read more »

Posted by & filed under Announcements.

I was just doing technical support for one of our site license customers. It occurred to me that many folks don’t know that is an option. Doing a site license has these benefits:

  • quite low unit pricing
  • easy availability of Understand to when engineers move in and out of projects
  • much easier licensing (no license manager, it just works on your IP ranges or domains)

If your site might be interested just contact Sue or Kevin at to learn cost and technical options.

Posted by & filed under Announcements.

We are always on the lookout for new ways to represent source code. Word Clouds caught my fancy.

Here is one of our own source code showing the top 50 most complex functions in source tree.


We thought doing Classes by lines of code, Classes by Sum Complexity and Architectures by the same might also be interesting.

Q: Worth adding to Understand?

BTW: The Cloud was generated by