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What’s New in Helix QAC 2022.1

Helix QAC 2022.1 delivers improved compliance module coverage for AUTOSAR, MISRA, and CWE with greater C++ 20 language feature support.

In addition, this release includes greater control over analysis configuration and message suppressions; provides broader compiler support; and general quality of life improvements for performance and various plugins.

Coding Standard Coverage (AUTOSAR, MISRA, CWE)

Improved AUTOSAR Coverage

AUTOSAR coverage has been increased to 95%.

Improved MISRA C:2012 (TC2) Coverage

MISRA C:2012 compliance module has been updated to reflect Technical Corrigendum 2 category and wording changes.

Improved CWE Coverage

CWE coverage for C has been expanded to include new messages for Concurrent Execution using Shared Resource with Improper Synchronization ('Race Condition') to cover CWE-362.

Upgraded C++20 Language Support

This release adds C++20 language feature support for:

  • feature testing macros
  • std::is_constant_evaluated()

Framework Improvements

  • Project level options are now available on a per file/folder basis, providing more control over analysis configuration.
  • Comment based suppressions now support multi-homed messages.

Dataflow Improvements

Reduced memory usage for:

  • Large switch statements.
  • Pointers with a large number of aliased objects.

Improved Build Process Monitoring

Automated CCT generation using ‘qainject’ streamlines build comprehension and compiler setup.

In this release, functionality has been improved to provide a user-friendly project and compiler setup for the following common compilers.

  • Microchip XC8, XC8-CC
  • Wind River Diab
  • Texas Instruments Code Composer

Quality of Life Enhancements

GUI

  • Additional component options on a per file/directory basis.

CLI

  • Additional component options on a per file/directory basis.
  • Improved feedback when qacli report fails.

Performance

  • Reduced analysis memory usage for some projects.
  • Improved feedback from the CLI for certain configuration errors.

Plugins

  • Streamlined Jenkins plugin.
  • General improvements for Eclipse, Visual Studio, and Visual Studio Code.

Important Changes in Helix QAC 2022.1

End-of-Life for ‘Met’ Output Format

Helix QAC 2022.1 will no longer support the ‘met’ output format.

The binary ‘arc’ file output format introduced in Helix QAC 2019.2, which replaced the ‘met’ file output format, is the default as of Helix QAC 2020.2. As a result, the ‘met’ file format will be deprecated and no longer supported from Helix QAC 2022.1 onward.

Pre-Announcements

CCT Generator End-of-Life in 2023

Helix QAC 2023.1 will no longer support the legacy standalone CCT Generator.

The ‘qainject’ tool introduced in Helix QAC 2021.3 will replace the current CCT Generator. As a result, CCT’s generated using the legacy tool will be deprecated and no longer supported.

Upcoming ‘qacli admin’ changes

There are a large number of options associated with the ‘qacli admin’ sub-command and these will be separated out into several new sub-commands covering configuration of the system and projects. 

The corresponding ‘qacli admin’ options will be deprecated as new sub-commands are added and removed in a future release.  These changes will improve the usability of the CLI, enable more consistent use of short options and default values, and enhance the readability of the associated help pages. 

Included in the release notes are details for the ‘qacli admin' options that have been deprecated in 2022.1 and the full list of previously deprecated commands is included in the Helix QAC manual.

What’s New in Helix QAC 2021.3

Helix QAC 2021.3 introduces support for Visual Studio Code, new compliance modules for Hyundai Motor Group, and improved dataflow analysis capabilities with additional C++ 20 language support.

In addition, this version includes accuracy and coverage improvements for important automotive and secure coding standards, streamlined build process monitoring, and general quality of life improvements that provide better usability, security, and project setup/management options.

Visual Studio Code IDE Plugin

Use our new Visual Studio Code desktop analysis plugin to detect and fix issues quickly and easily before code check-in.

This new IDE extension supports desktop analysis of Helix QAC within Visual Studio Code for C/C++:

  • Analyze code, view, and filter results.
  • Localization for English and Japanese.
  • Support for multi-homed and suppressed messages.
  • Diagnostic message help.
  • Logging and output messages

Coding Standard Coverage (AUTOSAR, MISRA, CERT, CWE, HKMC)

Improved AUTOSAR Coverage

AUTOSAR coverage has been increased to 94% to make compliance easier along with the industry-leading precision and accuracy that Helix QAC is known for.

Improved MISRA C:2012 Coverage

MISRA C:2012 depth and accuracy have been improved.

Improved CERT Coverage

CERT C/C++ coverage has been improved to enhance depth and accuracy.

Improved CWE Coverage

CWE coverage has been expanded to include new messages related to encryption and variable use rule violations.

New HKMC Compliance Module for C/C++

Enforce Secure C/C++ Coding Guide for Automotive Embedded Systems with Helix QAC’s new compliance modules for Hyundai Motor Group and their suppliers.

Dataflow Improvements

  • Modeling of individual elements within an array provides greater analysis capabilities to find dataflow/path defects with improved accuracy.
  • Improved detection of pointer de-reference defects by additional propagation of the results of pointer arithmetic expressions.

Upgraded C++20 Language Support

This release adds C++20 language feature support for:

  • __VA_OPT__ elision operator in variadic macros

Improved Build Process Monitoring

Automated CCT generation using ‘qainject’ streamlines build comprehension and compiler setup.

This new functionality provides a user-friendly project and compiler setup for the following common compilers.

  • GNU C/C++
  • Clang
  • MS Visual Studio
  • Microchip MPLAB pic24
  • xc32
  • xc16
  • Hightec Tricore
  • QNX

Quality of Life Enhancements

Dashboard

  • Localization improvements
  • New LDAP configuration and authentication options
  • Improved SSL Certificate support

QACGUI

  • Change default view settings within the GUI
  • Automatic analysis when header files change

Framework

  • Project Roots now supported for incremental analysis
  • Dynamic analysis threads based on available resources

QACLI

  • CI/Docker install without GUI/Doc
  • Japanese translation and path fixes

Important Changes in Helix QAC 2021.3

Helix QAC 2021.3 has upgraded to use Python 3 and removed Python 2 which has reached End-Of-Life.

  • User action is needed to upgrade existing projects. To upgrade your projects run “qacli admin --upgrade". See product documentation for more information.
    • Note this upgrade process also applies when creating a new project but reusing a CCT created using a previous version of QAC.
  • If creating a new project with the CCTs included in the Helix QAC 2021.3 package, they have been converted and tested to work under Python 3.

End of Support

The following Visual Studio artifacts have been removed from the installation packages.

  • Visual Studio 2010, 2012, and 2013

What’s New in Helix QAC 2021.2

Helix QAC 2021.2 introduces new compliance reports for MISRA Compliance 2020 and general coding standards, complete support of the C++17 language specification, and plugin enhancements for faster analysis feedback.

In addition, this version includes increased MISRA and AUTOSAR coverage with improved accuracy, faster analysis, and quality of life improvements that provide better usability, security, and data management options.

Compliance Reports

These new reports help you determine the health of your code base and supply the information necessary to claim compliance against a coding standard. Generate reports for:

  •  MISRA Compliance 2020
  • General standards compliance

New Plugin Features

New optional features for the Visual Studio and Eclipse Plugins are introduced in this release for faster analysis feedback. Along with support for projects with multiple configurations.

Continuous Incremental Analysis

Enables analysis to be performed automatically when saving a file or after a predefined time of inactivity in a modified file.

Interactive Asynchronous Feedback

Enables diagnostic results to stream in as analysis progresses, so you can remediate issues while analysis is running.

Multi-Configuration Project Support

Projects with multiple configurations are now supported with Helix QAC IDE Plugins to provide easier project context switching.

Improved Coding Standard Coverage (AUTOSAR and MISRA)

Improved AUTOSAR Coverage

AUTOSAR coverage has been increased up to 93% to make compliance easier along with the industry-leading precision and accuracy that Helix QAC is known for.

Improved MISRA C:2012 Coverage

MISRA C:2012 compliance has been updated to include features of MISRA C:2012 TC1.

Complete C++17 Language Support

Helix QAC 2021.2 fully supports the C++17 language specification. This release adds language feature support for:

  • Extended new
  • Guaranteed copy elision

Dataflow Improvements

Improved tracking of variable usage and handling of struct/union function arguments for greater accuracy and precision of analysis results.

General performance improvements resulting in faster analysis speed by up to ~5%*.

(*based on internally benchmarked OSS projects)

Integrate Helix QAC Diagnostic Results with Klocwork

With 2021.2 we introduce the ability to export Helix QAC findings into Klocwork’s Compliance and Application Security Testing (CAST) Portal. This enables you to:

  • Use Helix QAC and Klocwork together to provide industry-leading compliance coverage across the major embedded and automotive programming languages.
  • Export and integrate Helix QAC diagnostic results with Klocwork.
  • Review and manage security and compliance issues in one place.
  • Generate compliance reports natively with Helix QAC or from the Klocwork SAC portal.

Quality of Life Enhancements

QAGUI and QACLI

  • Compliance report generation
  • Improved sync method for easier configuration

QAGUI

  • Upgraded look and feel
  • External file modification can trigger automatic analysis

QACLI

  • Option to output data in SARIF format
  • Export Helix QAC data to Klocwork portal providing a single destination to view results from both tools

Dashboard

  • LDAP Implementation
  • SSL Certificates

Important Changes in Helix QAC 2021.2

End of Support

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6
  • Visual Studio 2010, 2012, and 2013

The Visual Studio artifacts listed above will remain in the installation packages but will be removed in the next release.

What's New in Helix QAC 2021.1?

Helix QAC 2021.1 delivers complete support for CERT C++ rules, expands AUTOSAR coverage, and adds new language support for C++17.

Improved Compliance Coverage for CERT and AUTOSAR

Full CERT C++ Coverage

Helix QAC now covers 100% of the CERT C++ rules to provide unparalleled coding standard coverage.

Improved AUTOSAR Coverage

This release increases AUTOSAR coverage to 91% with Helix QAC’s industry-leading precision and accuracy — making compliance easier.

New C++17 Language Support

Expanded support for C++17 language specification. New language features include:

  • Lambda Capture of *this by Value as [=,*this]
  • constexpr lambda
  • Allow const eval for all non-type template arguments
  • Aggregate initialization of classes with base classes

Important Upcoming Changes in Helix QAC 2022.1

Pre-Announcement: ‘Met’ Output Format End-of-Life in 2022

Helix QAC 2022.1 will no longer support the ‘met’ output format.

The binary ‘arc’ file output format introduced in Helix QAC 2019.2, which replaced the ‘met’ file output format, is the default as of Helix QAC 2020.2. As a result, the ‘met’ file format will be deprecated and no longer supported from Helix QAC 2022.1 onward.

If the legacy 'met' format is required, then that information can either be extracted from the 'arc' files using an appropriate 'lua' script. See: Helix QAC user manuals for more detail.

What's New in Helix QAC 2020.2?

Helix QAC 2020.2 delivers complete support for CERT C POSIX rules, adds new language support for C++ 17/20, and introduces a new compliance module for ISO/IEC TS 17961.

In addition, the latest version expands compliance coverage and features quality of life improvements that provide increased productivity and usability for Jenkins and QAGUI.

Improved Compliance Coverage (CERT, AUTOSAR, ISO/IEC TS 17961)

 

CERT C POSIX Rule Support

Helix QAC now covers 100% of the CERT C POSIX Rules — providing unparalleled coding standard coverage.

Improved CERT C++ Coverage

Coverage for CERT C++ has increased to 95% with this release.

New ISO/IEC TS 17961 Compliance Module

Ensure your projects are C Secure with Helix QAC’s new compliance module for ISO/IEC TS 17961. Helix QAC now provides 98% coverage for C Secure.

Improved AUTOSAR Coverage

Make compliance easier — this release increases AUTOSAR coverage up to 91% with the industry-leading precision and accuracy that Helix QAC is known for.

New C++17/20 Language Support

Helix QAC 2020.2 adds C++17 language feature support for:

  • Pack expansions and declarator lists in using declarations.
  • Typename keyword in template template parameters.
  • Non-type template parameters declared with a placeholder type.
  • UTF-8 character literals.
  • In-class definition of explicit template specializations.
  • Enumeration direct-list initialization.
  • Structured bindings.

Helix QAC 2020.2 adds C++ 20 language feature support for:

  • Storage class specifiers in structured bindings.

QAGUI New Features

Two new optional features for QAGUI are introduced in this release of Helix QAC for faster analysis feedback.

Continuous Incremental Analysis

Enables analysis to be performed automatically when saving a file or after a pre-defined time of inactivity in a modified file.

Interactive Asynchronous Feedback

Enables diagnostic results to stream in as analysis progresses so you can begin remediating issues while analysis is running.

Jenkins Pipelines

Support for Jenkins Pipelines provides an easy way to automate static analysis as part of your application lifecycle within your Continuous Integration (CI) or Continuous Delivery (CD) workflows.

Important Changes in Helix QAC 2020.2

End of Support for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6

Beginning with Helix QAC 2020.2, the following operating system will not be supported:

  • RHEL 6

Important Change to Default Format for Semantic Output

Helix QAC 2020.2 will use the binary 'arc' file output format by default.  If the legacy 'met' format is required, then that information can either be extracted from the 'arc' files using an appropriate 'lua' script (See: Helix QAC user manuals for more detail.), or the legacy output format can be enabled with "-metfile+". 

(Note: Features that are dependent on the 'arc' format will not work with "-metfile+".  For more information please refer to the Helix QAC 2020.2 release notes.)

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our support team.

What’s New in Helix QAC 2020.1?

Helix QAC 2020.1 adds support for commonly used C++17/20 language features, expands compliance coverage, accelerates performance, and enhances productivity.

Improved CERT C Coverage

Coverage of CERT C Rules has increased to 100%.

Improved CERT C++ Coverage

Coverage for CERT C++ has increased with this release.

Improved MISRA C:2012 Amendment 2 Coverage

MISRA C:2012 Amendment 2 is completely supported.

Improved AUTOSAR Coverage

Coverage for AUTOSAR has increased with this release.

New C++17/20 Language Support

Helix QAC 2020.1 adds C++17 language features support for inline variables, nested namespace definition, and selection statements with an initializer.

Helix QAC 2020.1 adds C++ 20 language features support for nested inline namespaces and range-based for statements with an initializer.

Improved Eclipse Plugin Performance

The Eclipse Plugin now features quick keyboard shortcuts for common commands and quality of life improvements for increased productivity and usability.

Improved Visual Studio Plugin Performance

The Visual Studio Plugin has quality of life improvements for increased productivity and usability.

Improved Helix QAC Dashboard

The Helix QAC Dashboard has improved upload performance, bug-fixes, and minor enhancements.

Important Changes in Helix QAC 2020.1

End of Windows 7 Support

Windows 7 will not be supported from 2020.1 onwards. The supported operating systems going forward will be:

  • Windows 10 (64 bit)
  • Linux: RHEL 6 and 7 (64 bit)

End of Support for Legacy Visual Studio Versions

Visual Studio 2010, 2012, and 2013 versions are no longer supported by Microsoft on Windows 10. For that reason, beginning with Helix QAC 2020.1, the Helix QAC Visual Studio plugin will not support these versions.

What’s New in Helix QAC 2019.2?

Helix QAC 2019.2 adds support for commonly used C++17 language features and Visual Studio 19. This release also expands compliance coverage, accelerates performance, and enhances productivity.

Download PDF

Improve CERT Coverage

Coverage for CERT C and CERT C++ has increased with this release.

Leverage C++17

Helix QAC 2019.2 includes support for C++17— including fold expressions; constexpr if; template argument deduction for class templates; and exception specifications as part of the type system.

Increase Productivity

There are several feature updates in Helix QAC 2019.2 that improve productivity. This includes support for Visual Studio 2019, and an updated and improved Eclipse plugin.

Easy selection of C90, C99 or C11 rules makes it is easier configure your MISRA projects. And, your logs can now be stored in a project-specific location.

Reduce Disk Usage

Particularly important for large projects, Helix QAC 2019.2 uses a more efficient internal storage format to significantly reduce the amount of disk space it uses.

Important Changes in Helix QAC 2019.2

Support for Legacy Hosting Operating Systems

Support for RHEL 5, and all 32-bit Windows and Linux platforms will be removed from 2019.2 onwards. Helix QAC 2019.2 will only be supported on the following operating systems:

  • Windows: 7* and 10 (64 bit)
  • Linux: RHEL 6 and 7 (64 bit)

*We are planning to remove Windows 7 support from the subsequent release (2020.1).

What’s New in Helix QAC 2019.1?

Helix QAC 2019.1 adds support for inter-thread defect detection. This release also expands compliance coverage, accelerates performance, and enhances productivity.

Watch this pre-recorded webinar to learn more about the new features.

DOWNLOAD PDF   WATCH NOW

image-release-qac-2019.1
An example of data race detection in Helix QAC.

Leverage Multithreading — Without Concurrency Defects

Helix QAC 2019.1 includes new dataflow features and enhancements — including inter-thread, intra-thread, and tainted variable analysis.

This update allows you to detect potential concurrency defects, such as deadlock and data race.

Improve Compliance Coverage (CERT, MISRA, AUTOSAR)

Helix QAC offers the best coverage of the MISRA C© and MISRA C++© coding standards. And the precision and accuracy of that coverage has increased with Helix QAC 2019.1.

Helix QAC now offers complete support for C++14. And the AUTOSAR compliance module has been updated for the October 2018 update to AUTOSAR coding guidelines.

Coverage for CERT C/C++ has also increased with this release.

Accelerate Performance (Analysis & Synchronization)

Helix QAC 2019.1 includes performance updates.

Cross-module analysis is faster with this release. Helix QAC 2019.1 also improves the desktop  integration with the web dashboard (formerly QA Verify). This accelerates project synchronization.

Increase Productivity (Searchable Help)

There are several feature updates in Helix QAC 2019.1 that improve productivity. This includes a searchable help, as well as some command line (CLI) updates.

Important Changes in Helix QAC 2019.1

The latest release of Helix QAC (formerly QAC/QAC++/QA Verify) includes the following changes.

 

How Helix QAC Is Versioned

Helix QAC will no longer use a <major>.<minor>.<patch> format. The version will be based on year and the release within the year. So, the new release will be “Helix QAC 2019.1”. This will consist of:

  • QAC 9.6
  • QAC++ 4.4
  • QA Verify (Helix QAC dashboard) 2.4

 

Where Helix QAC Will Be Installed

By default, Helix QAC 2019.1 will be installed into “C:\Perforce\Helix-QAC-2019.1” for Windows users or “/opt/Perforce/Helix-QAC-2019.1” for Linux users.

 

Where User Data Is Stored

The user data location is platform- and user privilege-specific. Here’s a table with further details:

 

 

Platform

Privilege

Location

Registry

Windows  

Non-admin

%LOCALAPPDATA%\Perforce\Helix-QAC-2019.1

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Perforce

Windows  

Admin

%LOCALAPPDATA%\Perforce\Helix-QAC-2019.1

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Perforce

Linux 

Non-admin        

~/.config/Perforce/Helix-QAC-2019.1

n/a

Linux    

Admin

/etc/Perforce.d/Helix-QAC-2019.1

n/a

 

Where Log Files Are Stored

By default they will be in “%LOCALAPPDATA%\Perforce\Helix-QAC-2019.1” for Windows users or “~/.config/Perforce/Helix-QAC-2019.1” for Linux users.

The log file name changes to Helix-QAC_<date>T<time>_<id>.log

 

How the Jenkins Plug-In Will Change

Jenkins users will need to update the PRQA plug-in to v3.0.2 (or above) for Helix QAC 2019.1.

 

Programs That Won’t Change

The qacli and qagui will retain their names. Key folders such as the “prqa” folder and the prqaproject.xml will also remain the same.

What’s New in Helix QAC 2.4?

Helix QAC 2.4 adds a CWE C++ compliance module. And it updates compliance coverage, performance, and productivity.

Image Release Helix QAC 2.4 What's New

Add the New CWE C++ Compliance Module

Identify CWE C++ security weaknesses in your code. And map Helix QAC for C++ diagnostics to CWE list entries.

Additional Compliance Updates

Helix QAC 2.4 includes additional compliance updates:

  • Better coverage for AUTOSAR C++, MISRA C, and CERT C/C++.
  • Parser support for C11 and more modern C++ features.

Performance and Productivity Enhancements

Helix QAC 2.4 also includes updates for better performance and greater productivity, such as:

  • IDE plug-in support for Eclipse Photon
  • Report analysis times per file

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