Friday, April 07, 2006

Illegal Characters & NCover Versions

Some people are reporting problems with NCoverExplorer which are caused by an older version of NCover - that is NCover version 1.4.6. The problem occurs when they try to drill down into the source code within the GUI.

Please do NOT use NCover 1.4.6. The problem is within the coverage.xml file created - the filename attributes end up with extraneous characters appended (something like '�'). I may try to strip this out myself in a future NCoverExplorer version, however as Peter does not even list this version for download nowadays I would rather people were forced to use a more "supported" NCover download.

So to clarify - which version of NCover should you use?

If you do not have the .Net 2.0 framework installed on your machine then you should use NCover 1.3.3. This is exactly what we use at work every day without any problems.

If you want to profile a .Net 2.0 application, then you must use one of the latest NCover 1.5.x betas. The very latest 1.5.4 beta does have some known issues (see the NCover forums - in particular here, here and here). Peter has had more important things to think about recently (congrats by the way mate!) but he has indicated the next release with some bug fixes will be coming out soon.

If you want to profile a .Net 1.1 application but happen to have .Net 2.0 installed then you can use either version of NCover. I'm sure Peter would much rather people were using 1.5.x than 1.3.3 so once his next beta release comes out that would be my preference, particularly for the coverage exclusion attribute support.

All supported NCover versions can be downloaded from

One final point - I see additional confusion coming from the two NCover projects out there. The NCover we want you all to be using is from - unfortunately all too easily confused with another "inactive" project at SourceForge. Irritating I'm sure for all concerned that the two projects have the same name - just remember and you can't go wrong.


At January 02, 2007 9:05 AM, Anonymous jay_p said...

I recently switched from .NET 1.1 to .NET 2.0 and as a part of this change I installed NCover 1.1.5 Beta. My previous version of NCover was 1.3.3. When I tried to run NCover using the same command line syntax that had worked with NCover 1.3.3, I got nothing. The console window flashes but I get no coverage report and no log file. I don't think the command line syntax has been changed? Any help would be greatly appreciated.



At January 02, 2007 10:40 AM, Anonymous jay_p said...

Regarding my previous post, a colleague showed me to the wonderful world of NCoverExplorer. Just out of curiosity I used the NCoverRunner command line syntax as an example and I got results (what I neglegted to mention in my previous post I used NCoverBrowser to view the coverage results).

Seems that NCoverBrowser 1.0 is not (fully) compatible with the result XML NCover 1.5.5 Beta generates. When viewed in NCoverBrowser the it looks like result file has coverage info only for the main dll/exe with no code lines hit...



At January 02, 2007 5:36 PM, Blogger kiwidude said...

Hi jay_p,

Yes the command line syntax did indeed significantly change between 1.3.3 and 1.5.x versions for NCover. Run it at the command prompt with no arguments to see the details - its to do with double slashes on NCover arguments and no need for /c in a nutshell.

Glad to hear that NCoverExplorer is now all working for you. The xml produced by NCover will be changing further with the next NCover release (still in development of 1.5.7) which I will ensure NCoverExplorer works with obviously. I think Jeff lost interest in maintaining NCoverBrowser a long time ago and hopefully you find NCoverExplorer a far more performant and richer featured alternative.


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