Docs and Info
 FindBugs 2.0
 Demo and data
 Users and supporters
 FindBugs blog
 Fact sheet
 Bug descriptions
 Bug descriptions(ja/日本語)
 Bug descriptions(fr)
 Mailing lists
 Documents and Publications
FindBugs Swag
 Open bugs
 Reporting bugs
 Dev team
 API [no frames]
 Change log
 SF project page
 Browse source
 Latest code changes

Update checking in FindBugs

When FindBugs is run, it now checks for updated versions of FindBugs or plugins. As a side effect of this, our server sees a request for whether there are any updated version of FindBugs available. Third party plugins can independently receive this same information. We are recording information about the operating system, Java version, locale, and Findbugs entry point (ant, command line, GUI, etc), in order to better understand our users.

For example, here is an example of the information that would be sent to the server:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>

<findbugs-invocation version="2.0.0-rc1" app-name="UpdateChecker" app-version="" entry-point="UpdateChecker" os="Mac OS X" 
     java-version="1.6" language="en" country="US" uuid="-4bcf8f48ba2842d2">
  <plugin id="edu.umd.cs.findbugs.plugins.core" name="Core FindBugs plugin" version="2.0.0-rc1"/>
  <plugin id="edu.umd.cs.findbugs.plugins.appengine" name="FindBugs Cloud Plugin" version=""/>
  <plugin id="edu.umd.cs.findbugs.plugins.poweruser" name="Power user commnand line tools" version=""/>

You can run the main method of edu.umd.cs.findbugs.updates.UpdateChecker to see what would be reported for you, and whether update checking is disabled and/or redirected (e.g., run

 java -classpath ~/findbugs/lib/findbugs.jar  edu.umd.cs.findbugs.updates.UpdateChecker

There is one element of the information sent that needs explanation: the uuid. Since we don't report anything like username, when we receive a bunch of update checks from a particular ip address, we don't know if that is one person running FindBugs many times on a single machine, or many users running FindBugs on many different machines So we generate a random 64 bit integer, store it in the Java user preferences, and report that on each use.

Disabling or redirecting update checks

Some organizations or individuals may have policies or preferences to not let us know any information about their running of FindBugs. Note that we do not collect any information about the code being analuzed. Even so, we understand that is very important for a few of our users, and provide several ways for you to disable or redirect FindBugs update checks.

  • There is a FindBugs plugin, noUpdateChecks.jar, which is in findbugs/optionalPlugin in the standard distribution. If this plugin enabled, all update checks are disabled. You can move that plugin from findbugs/optionalPlugin to findbugs/plugin, to disable it for all users of that distribution. You can also copy it to
    , which will disable it for your account for any distribution of FindBugs you invoke (NOTE: double check location of personal FindBugs plugin installation for Windows User).
  • There are noUpdateChecks distributions of FindBugs available from SourceForge. This come with the noUpdateChecks plugin already moved to findbugs/plugin, and the webCloudClient.jar plug in the optional plugin directory (where it is disabled by default).
  • You can also redirect all update checks to a local server. This allows you to collect information about who is using what versions of FindBugs in your organization, and keep all of that information private.
  • All of the plugins from the FindBugs project use
    as the host we use for update checks. If you wish to ensure that no one from your organization accidently reports any usage information to the FindBugs project, you can blacklist that URL in your firewall
    • You can also block
      , the host we use for our publicly hosted repository of bug evaluations (e.g., evaluations in open source projects such as the JDK, Eclipse and GlassFish). While people have to explicitly request that their evaluations be stored into the FindBugs cloud, you can block it to ensure that no one accidently shares evaluations of your own code to the FindBugs cloud. You can also remove the WebCloudClient