A widely shared belief in the software engineering community is that stack traces are much sought after by developers to support them in debugging. But limited empirical evidence is available to confirm the value of stack traces to developers. In this paper, we seek to provide such evidence by conducting an empirical study on the usage of stack traces by developers from the ECLIPSE project. Our results provide strong evidence to this effect and also throws light on some of the patterns in bug fixing using stack traces. We expect the findings of our study to further emphasize the importance of adding stack traces to bug reports and that in the future, software vendors will provide more support in their products to help general users make such information available when filing bug reports.
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