What Is Static Code Analysis For Salesforce?

What Is Salesforce Static Code Analysis_CodeScan

The code that makes up the applications and updates that come from your Salesforce DevOps pipeline is important. That’s so basic that it’s barely worth saying, but there are numerous DevOps practitioners that consider “good enough” code to be, well, good enough.

The tendency to prioritize speed over quality with the idea that any errors can be fixed down the line is what’s known as “technical debt.” And technical debt is a costly, risky thing to rely upon.

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Although technical debt may not produce an immediate effect, it has a significant long-term impact on your organization’s bottom line. These hidden risks can mount as projects continue, eventually creating an expensive and time-consuming rewrite.

Improving the quality of your code can be done in a few different ways. The first is to work with only extremely talented developers. However, there is only a finite amount of the “best” developers. The next best thing to do is to enable your current team members—no matter what their experience or skill level—through the utilization of powerful DevOps tools.

Salesforce static code analysis is an irreplaceable tool that can drastically reduce technical debt, improve the overall quality of your code, lower production costs, support data security, and increase release velocity.

It almost sounds too good to be true.

But what exactly is static code analysis and how does it accomplish these things?

1. Real-time Insight into Code Health with Code Analyzer (Salesforce) Tools

Unhealthy code issues mean your application or update will experience bugs and data security vulnerabilities. The end user experience will suffer, assuming your project makes it through the deployment stage. With static code analysis in Salesforce, you get alerts the moment the health of your code is jeopardized to allow you to avoid these unfortunate outcomes. Your team can make immediate adjustments that prevent one bad line from impacting everything that follows it. This process helps them avoid rewriting large chunks of programming later.

Real-time insights with a Salesforce code analyzer also let your team monitor for false positives as they go. Commenting on these and identifying them during the build can save time and energy in the future.

Dashboards and scan reports provide a high-level analysis of the health of your code throughout the DevOps pipeline.

Visibility allows you to properly manage your Salesforce code and develop functionalities that meet end user and project expectations. How can you fix a problem if you don’t know it exists? Static code analysis strengthens the structure of your coding procedures, as well as the code itself. As a result, your DevOps team can focus on development with confidence that the best way to fix bugs is to keep them out of the code in the first place.

2. Customizations Maintain User Interface

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Customizations can be introduced to your Salesforce DevOps pipeline through specialized Lightning pages, components, and more. The flexibility provided by these customizations is what has made Salesforce a beneficial environment for a variety of industries. 

Metadata maintains the proper functionality of the customizations within your Salesforce environment.

Data loss or corruption can set your team back by erasing or corrupting existing customizations. Even environments with a small amount of customizations will save time and money by protecting them through secure metadata. Updates to the Salesforce custom metadata let you safely hide sensitive configurations for better access control, data security, and integrity.

3. Data Security Reviews Start at the Source

There are a wide variety of threats to your system’s data security. While protecting data must be a priority for every organization, it’s especially vital in heavily regulated sectors, where noncompliance can lead to costly fines. This is why a data backup and recovery tool is so essential. It is also why your Salesforce DevOps team needs to take every precaution to protect your data and metadata.

Static code scanning in Salesforce supports data security measures by finding and securing vulnerabilities in the code that might be later exploited by bad actors.

Faulty code can create unintended back doors in your Salesforce environment. It can also lead to failures, data loss, and reputational damage. Strong and secure code is healthy from the moment it is introduced to a DevOps project. Static code analysis automates these checks.

4. Automated Code Analysis Has a Broad Scope

And while it’s important to protect your code and Salesforce system data, that is not the only consideration that needs to be kept in mind. Metadata operates behind the scenes of your Salesforce environment, but it is an essential aspect that must be protected and addressed as vigorously as data.

Every screen update and line of code generates metadata. Losing this information or damaging it can create redundant work and lost functionality.

Bad metadata can expose sensitive data, break orgs, and slow down the development cycle. Salesforce static code analysis addresses the unique environment requirements of system metadata to preserve functionality.

A robust self-hosted or cloud-based Salesforce code analysis solution gets into the nooks and crannies that testing doesn’t. Testing can’t check every possible execution path, but a powerful static code analysis can accomplish just that. Real-time analysis tools that deliver in-depth coder feedback allow you to achieve higher quality code.

Static Code Scanning in Salesforce - Snippet

5. More Rules Find More Bugs

There are many different approaches to coding. Multi-developer teams are bound to have programmers utilizing different styles and approaches as they work together toward a shared goal. So how can you align the efforts of these team members and ensure all of the code works together without bugs and errors?

Static code analysis analyzes the lines of code entered by your team members and compares them against preset rules.

There are hundreds of available rules, which means there are hundreds of different types of bugs and vulnerabilities that can be assessed and recognized by a robust code scanning tool. This is an essential aspect of properly verifying your updates before they are sent to production.

Today’s Salesforce code scanning tools offer advanced customization options so you can tailor the rule set to meet your particular needs. Configure them to support your unique workflows, reviewing processes, and preferences. Preset rules also automatically enforce standardization and higher security in collaborative products and integrated development environments.

6. Better Code Creates Better Products

The ultimate goal of every Salesforce DevOps pipeline is to create a product that will benefit the eventual end user. An absence of bugs, errors, and data security vulnerabilities is essential to creating the best experience for this individual. And strong, healthy code is an inextricable part of accomplishing this. By consistently and continuously monitoring code health, you create products with the functionality and performance your end users want and expect.

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Updates and applications with verified coding structures will result in the smoothest and most beneficial experience for your customers.

Salesforce static code analysis has most of its immediate benefits on the back end of a project. But these benefits have ramifications that can be seen—whether they realize it or not—by the end user. 

Better code allows you to scale successfully, an essential consideration for any business looking to grow. Also, when your Salesforce DevOps professionals don’t need to devote their time to refactor and fix bugs, they have more opportunities to concentrate on improving products.

7. Save Time and Money

Another goal of Salesforce DevOps is to produce these high-quality products in a sustainable and cost-efficient manner. Getting your code right the first time around is critical to keeping costs low and saving team member time.

Coding errors become more costly the later they are found in the DevOps pipeline. Static code analysis saves money by providing alerts the moment these errors are entered into the system.

Salesforce static code analysis helps your team members reach their full potential by allowing them to focus on pushing projects forward. They won’t be bogged down by crawling through previously written code to find errors. Instead, they can focus on productivity and innovation to streamline your Salesforce DevOps pipeline.

A static code scan can also save time by helping you find errors at their source. Comprehensive scanning software conducts a line-by-line evaluation of your code and pinpoints the precise location of an error or vulnerability that time-consuming manual reviews could easily miss. Knowing exactly what needs rewriting and where means quicker revisions and faster time to release.

Develop high quality, secure code!

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