RepoVis: Visual Overviews and Full-Text Search in Software Repositories

Johannes Feiner, Keith Andrews

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference paperpeer-review


Project managers and software developers often have difficulty
maintaining an overview of the structure, evolution, and status of
collaborative software projects. Some tools are available for typical
source code management systems, which provide summary statistics or
simple visual representations of merge-branch graphs. However,
comprehensive visual overview and search facilities for such
repositories are lacking.

RepoVis is a new tool which provides comprehensive visual overviews
and full-text search for projects maintained in Git repositories. The
overview shows folders, files, and lines of code colour-coded
according to last modification, developer, file type, or associated
issues. Full-text searches can be performed for terms of interest
within source code files, commit messages, or any associated metadata
or usability findings, with matches displayed visually in the

The utility of the RepoVis approach is illustrated with three use
cases of real-world software inspection. Insights are presented into
the utility of full-text search and visual presentation of matches for
program comprehension.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProc. 6th IEEE Working Conference on Software Visualization (VISSOFT 2018)
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 24 Sept 2018
EventIEEE Working Conference on Software Visualization - Madrid, Spain
Duration: 24 Sept 201825 Sept 2018
Conference number: 6


ConferenceIEEE Working Conference on Software Visualization
Abbreviated titleVISSOFT 2018
Internet address


  • software visualisation, program comprehension, usability, metrics, visual overview, full-text search, git repositories.


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