What's the role of source-level debugging in porting applications?

What's the role of source-level debugging in porting applications?
Every application is designed to produce a particular, correct behavior including specified output, when executed with a particular set of inputs. When an application being ported does not conform to such expected behavior, additional analysis is normally required to understand the cause of such incorrect behavior. Source-level debugging is a valuable tool for identifying and resolving defects discovered or introduced during the porting process.

Source-level analysis using a debugger on the existing platform also helps a programmer understand how a particular function is used, the actual arguments passed to a function and values returned from a function. Such analysis can be used to improve comments embedded in the code or implementation notes, which results in making the most optimal porting changes.

This was first published in January 2005

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