Towards Boosting Patch Execution On-the-Fly

Samuel Benton, Yuntong Xie, Lan Lu, Mengshi Zhang, Xia Li, Lingming Zhang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Program repair is an integral part of every software system's life-cycle but can be extremely challenging. To date, various automated program repair (APR) techniques have been proposed to reduce manual debugging efforts. However, given a real-world buggy program, a typical APR technique can generate a large number of patches, each of which needs to be validated against the original test suite, incurring extremely high computation costs. Although existing APR techniques have already leveraged various static and/or dynamic information to find the desired patches faster, they are still rather costly. In this work, we propose SeAPR (Self-Boosted Automated Program Repair), the first general-purpose technique to leverage the earlier patch execution information during APR to directly boost existing APR techniques themselves on-the-fly. Our basic intuition is that patches similar to earlier high-quality/low-quality patches should be promoted/degraded to speed up the detection of the desired patches. The experimental study on 13 state-of-the-art APR tools demonstrates that, overall, SeAPR can sub-stantially reduce the number of patch executions with negligible overhead. Our study also investigates the impact of various configurations on SeAPR. Lastly, our study demonstrates that SeAPR can even leverage the historical patch execution information from other APR tools for the same buggy program to further boost the current APR tool.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings - 2022 ACM/IEEE 44th International Conference on Software Engineering, ICSE 2022
PublisherIEEE Computer Society
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781450392211
StatePublished - 2022
Event44th ACM/IEEE International Conference on Software Engineering, ICSE 2022 - Pittsburgh, United States
Duration: May 22 2022May 27 2022

Publication series

NameProceedings - International Conference on Software Engineering
ISSN (Print)0270-5257


Conference44th ACM/IEEE International Conference on Software Engineering, ICSE 2022
Country/TerritoryUnited States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software


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