SciTools Understand

SciTools Understand, the Developers’ “Swiss Army Knife” for maintaining, measuring, and visualising code bases

Quickly interpret large or complex legacy code bases … often with poor documentation.
Visualize complex legacy code, perform impact analysis, and deliver powerful metrics.

Free Trial


Get The Most Out of SciTools Understand with Understand Version 6


Annotations allow developers to comment and document code without modifying source files. Attach important documents, save whiteboard images, or other important pieces of information that you and your team need to save.

Make your own use case or implement processes in use by existing teams, track of to-do lists, help prioritise work, make assigning tasks easy, keep track of areas that need refactoring and much more.

New in
  • New

    Annotations Viewer sidebar displays all annotations in current source with filtering options
  • New

    Add attachments to annotation for easy reference of documents and screen shots
  • New

    Highlighted line shows speak bubble allowing quick creation of annotations
  • New

    Annotations Browser provides filtered access to all project annotations by Author, Date or File Structure

Project Portability

The project structure has been totally revamped so instead of the traditional database files, Understand now uses directory-based projects.

Project sharing is easier than ever – all of the necessary information needed to create a project is located in one directory, is text based and small enough to easily be checked in for sharing and Version Control.

New in
  • New

    All project configuration files are now stored in a unique project directory
  • New

    Improved file management for version control and project comparisons


Configure virtual source code groups to focus reports and metrics to specific components or teams.

Architectures can be used for many different activities. For example, one organisation created a complexity report based on their staff to track which team is working on the most complex code bases.

Another uses Architectures to keep track of large refactoring projects to regularly query which files have been updated and which still need work.

One of the most popular uses is organising the code into functional units and viewing dependencies between those different units. e.g. What dependencies do we have on external libraries?

New in
  • New

    Add any entity, function, class, variable, etc, to an architecture
  • New

    Drag and drop entities from anywhere
  • New

    Tag new project entities to include in architectures

Other Notable Improvements

  • New

    Updated configurable welcome page and project overview graphs
  • New

    Open Understand in the state you finished with save project state
  • New

    Improvements to graphs and options to customise
  • New

    Dark mode to match your system style!

Accessed via a streamlined Information Browser, SciTools Understand provides a comprehensive overview of your software in a quick and easy format. Rapid insight into your code base is enabled through a wide range of metrics, customisable reports, graphs, a set of dependency analysis functions and accurate search facilities. Combined with a customisable, fully-featured programming Interface, this is the best programming editor for maintaining and understanding code.

Programmers’ Editor

The editor has been designed to match the best programming editors and IDEs, but with the addition of features for maintaining and understanding code. The GUI features tabs, tab groupings and docking. The editor also has syntax colourisation, auto-completion, syntax-based collapsing and folding. A built-in ‘browse’ mode turns the editor into a web browser for code, providing a wealth of information and the file and folder comparison feature allows you to compare entities, files and folders quickly without the need for a parse. With an advanced ‘diffing’ function and the ability to customise workspaces, this provides unparalleled insight into your source code.

Code Metrics

Standard metrics can be generated, depending on the language being analysed include:

  • Class Count
  • File Count
  • Function Count
  • Ratio Comment to Code
  • Comment Line Count
  • Statement Count
  • Code Line Count
  • Declarative Statement Count
  • Line Count

Instant Search

Using Instant Search, Understand allows you to search millions of lines of source code quickly and easily. Instant Search uses an index that is built up incrementally as files in your projects change, allowing you to search for single words and enter more complex queries using wildcard characters or Boolean logic.

Graphs & Maps

Understand provides a number of graph types, helping you to get insight into your software. These include:

  • Declaration Graphs
  • Hierarchy Graphs
  • Control Flow Graphs
  • UML Class Graphs
  • Dependency Graphs
  • Tree Maps


Understand can generate a range of reports, which fall into the following categories:

  • Cross-Reference Reports
  • Structure Reports
  • Quality Reports
  • Metrics Reports

Powerful and flexible parsers provide support for 19 different languages, including support for mixed language projects



Developers save an average of 6.52 hours per week using Understand
(SciTools customer survey 2016)

Contact Emenda

Get in touch with the Emenda team for a demonstration, trial or more information