How Facebook Zeros In on Bugs in its Code

Facebook is arguably the single biggest social media platform in the world, and this status comes with a lot of work that is required in order to maintain the platform and ensure that everything is running as smoothly as possible. However, sometimes bugs just happen, and whenever a bug ends up getting in the way of a smooth and easy user experience for consumers, it becomes a high priority for Facebook to try and zero in on this bug and get rid of it, so that the overall impact that it ends up having on the user experience is more or less minimal.

However, Facebook has received a fair amount of criticism for its inability to speedily address problems within its code along with the numerous security breaches that have ended up happening while the company is trying to fix problems that have been occurring for a much longer period of time. It becomes easier to understand how these problems end up occurring in the first place when you realize that Facebook has over a hundred million lines of code, and looking through each line is a very time consuming process.

Four years ago, Facebook began working on what it referred to as an assessment tool, basically a kind of tool that would help them zero in on bugs that exist within its code and make sure that these bugs are not given the chance to truly impact user experiences. The platform that Facebook developed is dubbed Zoncolan, and the truly amazing thing is that it can scan the tens of millions of lines of code that are required in order for Facebook to function in under 30 minutes.

This can be particularly useful if Facebook has made some changes to the platform which the social media company does tend to do on a rather frequent basis all in all. Whenever a change is made, Facebook uses Zoncolan to go through the code and make sure that there are not any flaws or errors that need fixing, and if such a error is detected then Facebook’s engineers would get to work trying to fix it before the site goes live with the updates that have been put in place.


It is fair to say that this system is in no way perfect because of the fact that bugs are still detected on the consumer end quite frequently, but Zoncolan probably does help Facebook reduce the number of occurrences by a fairly large margin all in all.

One flaw in Zoncolan is that it is programmed to catch certain anomalies, so if the person that is putting the instructions into this platform makes a mistake and forgets to put in the required instructions to catch a certain kind of bug then this platform would not detect that particular line of code as a bug and so the bug will go through when the updated site goes live.

This is how bugs still end up appearing on the front end, although Zoncolan probably does help Facebook reduce the occurrences of glitches by a pretty large margin which is an impressive feat when you consider just how many lines of code Facebook has written in order to keep the site functioning at maximum capacity.

Here's How Worlds Biggest Social Network Detects Errors in Its 100 Million Lines of Code

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