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Posted 21 Nov 2008

Getting started with automated white box testing (and Pex)

Pex is a new tool that helps in understanding the behavior of .NET code, debugging issues, and in creating a test suite that covers all corner cases -- fully automatically.

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About the Authors

Jonathan de Halleux
United States United States
Jonathan de Halleux is Civil Engineer in Applied Mathematics. He finished his PhD in 2004 in the rainy country of Belgium. After 2 years in the Common Language Runtime (i.e. .net), he is now working at Microsoft Research on Pex (

Nikolai Tillmann
Software Developer (Senior) Microsoft Research
United States United States
Nikolai Tillmann is a Principal Research Software Design Engineer at Microsoft Research.

His main area of research is program specification, analysis, testing, and verification. He is leading the Pex project (, a framework for runtime verification and automatic test case generation for .NET applications based on parameterized unit testing and dynamic symbolic execution.

Previous projects he worked on include AsmL, an executable modeling language, and the Spec Explorer 2004 model-based testing tool. He contributed to XRT, a concrete/symbolic state exploration engine and software model-checker for .NET code. Spec Explorer 2007 is based on this engine, which is now productized internally by the Protocol Engineering Team at Microsoft to facilitate quality assurance of protocol documentation.

He received his M.S. ("Diplom") in Computer Science from the Technical University of Berlin in 2000.

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