Code review is systematic examination (often as peer review) of computer source code. It is intended to find and fix mistakes overlooked in the initial development phase, improving both the overall quality of software and the developers’ skills. Reviews are done in various forms such as pair programming, informal walkthroughs, and formal inspections.
Code reviews can often find and remove common vulnerabilities such as format string exploits, race conditions, memory leaks and buffer overflows, thereby improving software security. Online software repositories based on Subversion (with Redmine or Trac), Mercurial, Git or others allow groups of individuals to collaboratively review code. Additionally, specific tools for collaborative code review can facilitate the code review process.
Automated code reviewing software lessens the task of reviewing large chunks of code on the developer by systematically checking source code for known vulnerabilities. A recent study by VDC Research reports that 17.6% of the embedded software engineers surveyed currently use automated tools for peer code review and 23.7% expect to use them within 2 years.