Developers of software may feel cynical or they may be despondent over code reviews. But, they don’t need to feel inferior as they can derive a lot of benefits from these important reviews. The main intention of a code review is to help in fixing mistakes during the initial development stage of the software itself so that the overall quality of the software can be improved. Further, it helps in removing the common vulnerabilities, thereby, resulting in enhancing the overall security of the software. In fact, there is nothing spectacular about code reviews. They may rather turn out to be a long grind or sometimes even boring. But, their benefits don’t need to be over-emphasized at any given point of time.
But, as far as the managed-code review is concerned, it’s necessary to take a few steps. You should create a synergy between these steps and a list of security questions. The main point is to ensure you ask the right questions while you perform the review of security code.
Steps involved in review of security code
– You should not be ambiguous in your objectives. Being unclear in your objectives may result in losing effectiveness of your review. Further, clear objectives will improve your focus. Therefore, you should not hesitate to spend considerable time for understanding the right and possible security issues.
– You should work within a deadline. There may be overwhelming details but, if you keep focusing on trivial details and lose sight of the severe vulnerabilities that may defeat the very purpose of the review. By setting strict deadlines, you can optimize the output of your review. In short, you must not spend more time on low-priority objectives or areas.
– You should choose the right questions to ask so that you can identify the security issues in Managed Code review.
– Monitoring the progress is highly important. So, you can keep shorter goal-posts or smaller milestones for reviewing. By adopting this strategy, you can improve your focus and complete the review quickly. This helps you in finding more number of issues also.
– You must never forget that your review is aimed at security. If you broaden your objectives, you can never succeed in completing your review. The more your objectives are, the lesser will be your focus. So, you must never shift your focus away from the performance, reliability and also the functionality during your review.
– Only if you are thorough with the ins and outs of the architecture of the application you are reviewing, you can perform an effective review. If you have no time or if you have any other issues, you should at least know its component architecture. If you have the knowledge of the data-flow, those between the components and also to the repositories, it will be immensely helpful when you do your review.
– When you do code reviews successively, you may find that some key characteristics appear repeatedly. You must ensure to add them to the coding standards that will be used by your development department. By doing so, you will be helping in raising the awareness levels of the developers.
[author ] This guest post is contributed by Tom Rhoddings. He writes tech and business related blogs. You can read about the latest svn code review here.[/author]