The Parasoft MISRA Compliance artifact is a set of assets for your DTP infrastructure that enable you to readily demonstrate compliance with MISRA development guidelines. The MISRA Compliance artifact can be adapted to support any version of the MISRA standard, but it is configured by default for MISRA C:2012. This artifact ships with the Automotive Compliance Pack for DTP 5.4.3Contact your Parasoft representative for information about downloading and licensing the compliance pack.

In this section:


MISRA began as a set of technical guidelines to help organizations create safety-critical software for automotive applications. The standard has since been adopted by embedded software development organizations in other safety-critical industries. MISRA C:2012 is the most recent implementation for development using the C programming language and includes 159 base guidelines. Amendment 1 is a supplemental set of 14 guidelines that expanded the total to 173.

One of the challenges associated with achieving MISRA compliance has been the lack of a standardized mechanism for demonstrating compliance. To address this issue, MISRA published “MISRA Compliance 2016: Achieving Compliance with MISRA Coding Standards,” which provides a more concrete definition of “MISRA compliance” and identifies several deliverables required for demonstrating compliance with the MISRA standard.

The Parasoft MISRA Compliance artifact configures code analysis to run against MISRA guidelines and conforms the data to meet the following reporting specifications defined in MISRA Compliance 2016.

Guideline Enforcement Plan

A guideline enforcement plan (GEP) lists each MISRA guideline to indicate how compliance is checked. In the context of MISRA compliance with Parasoft, the GEP maps MISRA guidelines to Parasoft code analysis rules and DTP functionality.

Guideline Re-categorization Plan

A guideline re-categorization plan (GRP) documents agreed-upon changes to how MISRA guidelines are categorized. Guidelines are categorized as Mandatory, Required, and Advisory. A fourth category, Disapplied, may also be used for instances in which the guideline truly does not apply.

All mandatory guidelines must be followed to achieve compliance. Required guidelines should be followed, but documented exceptions are allowed (see Deviations report). Advisory guidelines are considered best practice.

Required and Advisory guidelines can be re-categorized into to stricter categories (e.g., Advisory to Required), but only Advisory guidelines can be re-categorized into less strict categories (i.e., to Disapplied).

Deviations Report

A "deviation" is a documented violation of the guideline and supporting rationale for allowing the violation to remain. In the context of MISRA compliance with Parasoft, deviations take the form of suppressed code analysis violations. Your project can have deviations and still be considered compliant if the deviations are documented in the report and do not impact safety.

Guideline Compliance Summary

A guideline compliance summary (GCS) is the primary record of overall project compliance. The GCS includes an entry for each guideline, its level of compliance, any deviations and/or re-catorizations, etc. The MISRA Compliance Report shipped with the Parasoft MISRA Compliance extension fulfills this requirement.  

See MISRA Compliance 2016: Achieving Compliance with MISRA Coding Standards for additional details and information.


In addition to the MISRA Compliance artifact, the following Parasoft products are required:

  • DTP and DTP Enterprise Pack 5.4.3 with Enterprise license
  • C/C++test 10.4.3 (Standard or Professional) with the Flow Analysis license feature enabled

Process Overview

  1. Analyze code with C/C++test using the MISRA C:2012 test configuration and report violations to DTP.
  2. Install the Automotive Compliance Pack for DTP 5.4.3 into DTP Extension Designer, which also installs the MISRA Compliance assets.
  3. Deploy the MISRA DTP Workflow to your DTP environment and add the MISRA dashboard and widgets to your DTP interface.
  4. Interact with the widgets and reports to identify code that needs to be fixed, as well as print out the reports for auditing purposes.

Achieving 100% Compliance

According to MISRA C:2012, there are four guidelines that cannot be statically analyzed. As a result, DTP will report 100% compliance against 169 guidelines.

MISRA Compliance Extension Assets

The Parasoft MISRA Compliance artifact helps you create the documentation required for demonstrating compliance with MISRA C:2012. The following assets are included:

  • Compliance categories and guidelines: These files add the MISRA Compliance option to DTP interfaces, such as widget configuration settings.  
  • Test configurations: These files specify which code analysis rules to execute. You can configure C/C++test to run the local test configuration or to run the test configuration uploaded to DTP when the compliance pack is installed. 
  • Dashboard template: This file adds enables you to add the MISRA C:2012 dashboard that includes a pre-defined set of MISRA-related widgets.
  • Model and profile: These files drive the report compliance reports necessary for demonstrating MISRA compliance. See Profile Configuration for additional information.
  • DTP Workflow: This is the DTP Enterprise Pack artifact that includes the widgets, reports, and processing logic that show violations in the context of MISRA guidelines.   

Installing and Deploying the DTP Workflow

  1. The MISRA Compliance artifact is installed as part of the Automotive Compliance Pack. See Installation for instructions.
  2. Choose Extension Designer from the DTP settings menu (gear icon).
  3. Click the Services tab and choose a service category. You can deploy the artifact to any service category you want. You can also create a new category (see Working with Services), but we recommend deploying compliance pack artifacts to the DTP Workflows service category. 
  4. You can deploy the artifact to an existing service or add a new service. The number of artifacts deployed to a service affects the overall performance. See Extension Designer Best Practices for additional information. Choose an existing service and continue to step 6 or click Add Service.
  5. Specify a name for the service and click Confirm
  6. The tabs interface allows you to organize your artifacts within the service. Organizing your artifacts across one or more tabs does not affect the performance of the system. Click on a tab (or click the + button to add a new tab) and click the vertical ellipses menu.
  7. Choose Import> Library> Workflows> Automotive> MISRA Compliance and click anywhere in the open area to add the the artifact to the service.
  8. Click Deploy to finish deploying the artifact to your DTP environment. 
  9. Return to DTP and refresh your dashboard. 

You will now be able to add the MISRA dashboard and widgets, as well as access MISRA reports.  

Adding the MISRA Dashboard

The MISRA dashboard is configured to show custom widgets shipped as part of the MISRA artifact. The dashboard also contains select native DTP widgets configured to show code analysis data within the context of MISRA C:2012. The information in this section is also covered in the Adding Dashboards chapter.

  1. Click Add Dashboard and specify a name when prompted.
  2. (Optional) You can configure the default view for the dashboard by specifying the following information:
    • Choose the filter associated with your project in the filter drop-down menu. A filter represents a set of run configurations that enabled custom views of the data stored in DTP. See DTP Concepts for additional information.
    • Specify a range of time from the Period drop-down menu. 
    • Specify a range of builds from the Baseline Build and Target Build drop-down menus.  
  3. Enable the Create dashboard from a template option and choose MISRA C Compliance from the drop-down menu.
  4. Click Create to finish adding the dashboard.

See Viewing MISRA Compliance Widgets for information about understanding the widgets shipped with the MISRA C:2012 artifact.

Manually Adding Widgets to Your Existing Dashboard

You can also add the MISRA widgets shipped with the artifact to an an existing dashboard. See Adding Widgets for general instructions on adding widgets to a dashboard. After deploying the artifact, the MISRA widgets will appear in the MISRA category in the Add Widget overlay:

Specify the following information when adding the MISRA Compliance - Percentage, MISRA Compliance - Status, and MISRA Violations by Category - TreeMap widgets:

TitleYou can rename the widget in the Title field.
FilterChoose a specific filter or Dashboard Settings from the drop-down menu. See Creating and Managing Filters for additional information.
Target BuildChoose a specific build from the drop-down menu. The build selected for the entire dashboard is selected by default. See Using Build Administration for additional information about understanding builds. 
CategoryThis setting is available in the MISRA Compliance - Guidelines by Status and MISRA Compliance - Status widgets. Choose an individual category or All from the drop-down menu.
Compliance ProfileSpecify a compliance profile (see Profile Configuration). The compliance profile data is used to generate some of the compliance reports.

Viewing MISRA Compliance Widgets 

Each widget provides a different view of the test and analysis data to help you achieve MISRA compliance. The following widgets are shipped with the MISRA Compliance DTP Workflow.

MISRA Compliance - Status Widget

This widget shows you the general state of compliance. You can add multiple instances of the widget configured to use a different profile, e.g., a profile with disapplied guidelines, to view your current compliance status. Click on the widget to open the MISRA Compliance Report

The widget can show five possible states:

  • Compliant: Code meets all guidelines with no deviations or changes to the guideline categories.
  • Not Compliant: Code does not meet all mandatory and/or required guidelines.
  • Missing rule(s) in analysis: Parasoft code analysis rules documented in your profile were not included in the specified build. Make sure all rules are enabled in C/C++test and re-run analysis.
  • Compliant with Deviations: Code meets all guidelines, but deviations have been applied. Deviations are violations that you have determined to be acceptable (see Deviations Report for additional information about deviations).
  • Compliant with Violations: Code meets all mandatory and required guidelines, but contains violations for advisory guidelines.

MISRA Compliance - Percentage Widget

This widget shows the completeness of MISRA compliance as a percentage. Completeness is based on number of guidelines being enforced in the profileClick on the widget to open the MISRA Compliance Report.

MISRA Compliance - Guidelines by Status

This widget shows the compliance status for individual guideline categories (Mandatory, Required, Advisory) or for all categories.

The pie chart can represent up to five different guideline statuses for the selected category:

GreenGuidelines that your code is complaint.

Guidelines that your code is deviating from but are still considered compliant.

A deviation is when the guideline is not being followed according to the Parasoft static analysis rule, but is considered acceptable because it does not affect the safety of the software. Deviations represent Parasoft static analysis rules that have been suppressed.


Guidelines that your code is considered compliant with, even though the static analysis rules that enforce them contain violations.

Only advisory guidelines can have this status.

RedGuidelines that your code is not compliant with.
MaroonGuidelines that are specified in the profile, but the Parasoft rule that enforces the guideline are missing.

You can perform the following actions:

  • Mouse over a pie slice to view details.
  • Click on a section to open the MISRA Compliance report filtered by the category and status.
  • Click on the number of violations counter to open the MISRA Compliance report filtered by the category and status.
  • Click on the number of deviations counter to open the Deviations Report filtered by the category selected in the widget.

MISRA Violations by Category - TreeMap Widget

This widget provides a representation of the highest concentration of static analysis violations per MISRA category (mandatory, required, and advisory). The widget also shows the guidelines (e.g., Dir 4.6, Rule 14.3, etc.) within each category in which violations were reported. Finally, the Parasoft rule(s) enforcing each guideline are also presented. Tiles are proportional to the number of static analysis violations reported for each rule. 


The widget uses the hierarchy established in the model profile to correlate rules, guidelines, and categories. You can mouse over a tile in the widget to view the number of violations associated with each rule-guidline-category.

Click on a rule to see the violation in the Violations Explorer.

Viewing MISRA Compliance Reports

The MISRA Compliance Report provides an overview of your MISRA compliance status and serves as the primary document for demonstrating compliance.

You can perform the following actions:

  • Use the drop-down menus to sort by MISRA Category or by Compliance status.
  • Click on a guideline link in the Guideline column to open the Guideline Enforcement Plan. The link goes directly to the specific guideline so that you can review the Parasoft code analysis rule or rules enforcing the guideline. 
  • Click on a link in the # of Violations, In-Code Suppression, or DTP Suppressions column to view the violations in the Violations Explorer.
  • Open one of the MISRA Compliance sub-reports.
  • Click Download PDF to export a printer-friendly PDF version of the report data. If you added a custom graphic to DTP as described in Adding a Custom Graphic to the Navigation Bar, the PDF will also be branded with the graphic. 

The MISRA Compliance Report contains the following sub-reports:

Guideline Enforcement Plan

The Guidelines Enforcement Plan (GEP)shows which static analysis rules are used to enforce the MISRA guidelines. It is intended to describe how you are enforcing each guideline.

This report uses the data specified in the compliance profile (see Profile Configuration). In the profile, you can add notes to the Compiler field, such as “no errors” or specific compiler settings that will be applied, to document your plan. These notes appear in the Compiler column.

The Analysis Tool column should refer to the static analysis rule. The Manual Review column should contain any manual verifications that will be performed in addition to the automated checks applied by the compiler and analysis tool.

Guideline Re-categorization Plan

If you changed any of the MISRA guideline categories (see Profile Configuration), they will be processed and displayed in this report. Refer to the MISRA standard for additional information about guideline re-categorization plans.

Deviations Report 

Your code can contain violations and still be MISRA-compliant as long as the deviations from the standard are documented and that the safety of the software is unaffected. Deviations are code analysis rules that have been suppressed either directly in the code or in the DTP Violations Explorer. See the C++test documentation for details on suppressing violations in the code. See Suppressing Violations in the Violations Explorer documentation for information about suppressing violations in DTP.

Suppressions versus the Do Not Show priority

In versions of DTP prior to 5.4, the only way to suppress static analysis violations was to set the priority to Do Not Show. This approach hides violations, but is not a true, programmatic suppression. You can convert violations flagged with the Do Not Show priority into true suppressions. See Upgrade Notes in the 5.4.0 release notes for details.

Click on the Deviations Report link in the MISRA Compliance report to open the Deviations Report.  

The Deviations Report shows all guideline IDs and headers, but guidelines that have been suppressed will show additional information.

You can filter the report by MISRA category, as well as enable the Only Deviations option to only show deviations.

Build Audit Report

The Build Audit Report shows an overview of code analysis violations, as well as test results and coverage information, associated with the build. This report also allows you to download an archive of the data, which is an artifact you can use to demonstrate compliance with MISRA during a regulatory audit.

In order to download an archive, the build has to be locked. See Build Audit Report for additional details about this report.  

Profile Configuration

The MISRA Compliance DTP Workflow ships with a model profile (see Working with Model Profiles) configured to monitor compliance with MISRA C:2012. The profile includes information necessary for generating compliance reports (see Viewing MISRA Compliance Reports), such as fields for specifying your compiler and guideline categorization and re-categoriziation. You can modify the profile if you want to re-categorize guidelines to meet you specific goals or specify additional metadata for your reports. Changes will be reflected in the Guideline Re-categorization Plan.

We recommend creating a copy of the default profile and modifying the copy. 

  1. Click Export Profile to download a copy. 
  2. Rename the copy and click Import Profile
  3. Browse for the copy and confirm to upload.  
  4. Click on a guideline and specify your changes. If you are changing MISRA categories, the following strings are acceptable:
  5. Click Save

Upgrading MISRA Compliance

You should update any extensions when you upgrade DTP. Extensions are designed to be forward compatible, but Parasoft does not guarantee that older extensions will function as expected with newer versions of DTP. We strongly recommend installing the latest version of the artifact and removing the older version to ensure proper functionality. 

  1. Install the latest version of the Automotive Compliance Pack as described in the Installation section.
  2. Open Extension Designer from the DTP settings menu (gear icon) and click the Settings tab.
  3. Expand the DTP Workflow compliance category (or the category containing the service with the older MISRA artifact) and click on the service. 
  4. Click on the tab containing the MISRA flow and delete all nodes. You can use your mouse to click and drag over all nodes or use the select-all keyboard shortcut.
  5. Import the new MISRA Compliance artifact by choosing Import> Library> Workflows> Automotive> MISRA Compliance from the vertical ellipses menu.
  6. Click Deploy to finish deploying the newer MISRA components.
  7. Click the Configuration tab and click the delete button (trash icon) for the older extension.

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