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Thread: A Better Tool for Navigating The Codes

  1. #1
    Administrator Kavoir's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009

    A Better Tool for Navigating The Codes

    It is an old saying in China, like the title of this article, that one must refine his or her tools before he or she does the job because a better tool will facilitate his or her work.
    Before we start, we should find a powerful source code navigator to help us gain a clear insight of software system.
    I have tried many tools for navigating the source code, including Eclipse, CodeBlocks, Netbeans, Vim, Emacs, Notepad++, Notepad2 and Source Insight. However, I don’t think they fit all my requirements because they are either lack of the source analyzing functionality or not free.

    Source Navigator Is The Right Choice

    Finally, I found a goodie on SourceForge (, and it is called Source Navigator (snavigator or SN for short), initiated by RedHat and brought opensource and ported to Windows along with MinGW. So you can enjoy the same user experience on both Linux and Windows since it is cross-platform.

    As far as I know, there are some versions of SN that have been ported to Windows and you can choose one according to your preference. For me, I choose MinGW/SN.

    Create A New Project

    On starting the application, its welcome slash screen is really straightforward. It calls you to choose one of your projects to start with.

    Assuming you are new to this tool, you should create a new project by clicking the "New Project…" at right hand side.

    You specify the project file and the directory of your source code, then it will scan all the source files and build index for tokens and cross-references.
    On completing building index, it will show a project editor, in which all the source files are listed by name and you can filter them by typing a pattern in to "Pattern" blank.

    Exploring the Source Navigator

    Looking at the toolbar, you can see four choices for you the get started with. They are list classes, which will list all the classes in the table, list methods that will list all the member functions in the table below, list functions that will list all the function in terms of C compatiblity and list files which all files are shown.
    By choosing different items in the table, you can see different buttons are enbaled thus bring you with even more powerful functionals.
    For example, if you list the classes and choose any one of the classes, then you are allowed to view class hierachy by clicking the first button on the toolbar. Then the panel will appear below.

    Other useful functionals are browsing the included files and showing cross-reference.

    Source Navigator is a powerful tool for browsing source code and still there are many other funtionals that have been unveiled here yet. But you can check them out by yourself.

    Where to Get It

    For Source Navigator of MinGW, please visit the sourceforge website:
    For berlios sourcenav, please visit the website:
    The road goes ever on and on.

  2. #2
    Junior Member Princessly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Not sure what you are talking but ain't this supposed to be posted in the code forum?
    Live in the fairy tale, Princessly, the valiant store.

  3. #3
    Administrator Kavoir's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Quote Originally Posted by Princessly View Post
    Not sure what you are talking but ain't this supposed to be posted in the code forum?
    I don't even remember why I posted it here!
    The road goes ever on and on.

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