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Developers frequently integrate complex COTS frameworks and components in software applications. COTS products are often only partially documented, and developers may misuse technologies and introduce integration faults, as witnessed by the many entries in fault repositories. Once identified, common integration problems and their fixes are usually documented in forums and fault repositories on the Web, but this does not prevent them to occur in the field when COTS products are reused. In this paper, we propose a methodology and a self- healing technology that can reduce the occurrence of infield failures caused by common integration problems that are identified and documented by COTS developers. Our methodology supports COTS developers in producing healing connectors for common misuses of COTS products. Our technology produces information that facilitate debugging and patching of applications that use COTS products. Application developers inject healing connectors into their systems to automatically repair problems caused by misuses of COTS products. Healing takes place at run-time, on-the-fly and in-the-field. The activity of healing connectors is traced in log files, to facilitate debugging and patching of integration problems. Empirical experiences with several applications and COTS products show the feasibility of the approach and the efficiency of the technology.
Date of Conference: 16-24 May 2009