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It is a brave company that claims it can slash debugging costs, but that is precisely what Undo Software is saying about its bidirectional debugger, UndoDB.

Undo is a 2005 UK-based start-up that has decided to take the principles of bidirectional debugging already used within the Java community and build a tool that provides the same capabilities for C and C++, which the company claims can often be more prone to bug creation.

The tool will allow developers to move backwards and forwards in time through applications code, either line-by-line, or with a jump to a specific location.

The company claims this is particularly useful for finding intermittent bugs, as well as those where the actual cause of a bug is widely separated from its point of actual impact in the code. Such bugs can take a significant amount of time to find and can cost a great deal of money, both in direct developer time and the indirect impact on application delivery into production.

For some developers, however, there is a small drawback to accessing these capabilities at the moment. The initial V1.x release of UndoDB is only for use with C and C++ applications running on Linux-equipped x86 hardware. It cannot yet support applications that use threads, signal handlers or shared memory.

The road map, however, says that Version 2 will support multi-threading and signal handlers, and future versions will target other operating systems, including Windows, Apple's OS X and BSD, and other processor architectures. ®

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