Options for configuring code scanning
You decide how to generate code scanning alerts, and which tools to use, at a repository level. GitHub AE provides fully integrated support for CodeQL analysis, and also supports analysis using third-party tools. For more information, see the following bullets and "About code scanning."
CodeQL: Uses GitHub Actions (see below) or runs CodeQL analysis in a third-party continuous integration (CI) system (see "About CodeQL code scanning in your CI system").
Third‑party: Uses GitHub Actions or third-party tools and uploads results to GitHub AE (see "Uploading a SARIF file to GitHub").
If you run code scanning using multiple configurations, an alert will sometimes have multiple analysis origins. If an alert has multiple analysis origins, you can view the status of the alert for each analysis origin on the alert page. For more information, see "About code scanning alerts."
Note: This article describes the features available with the version of the CodeQL action and associated CodeQL CLI bundle included in the initial release of this version of GitHub AE. If your enterprise uses a more recent version of the CodeQL action, see the GitHub Enterprise Cloud version of this article for information on the latest features.
Before configuring code scanning for a repository, you must ensure that there is at least one self-hosted GitHub Actions runner available to the repository.
Enterprise owners, organization and repository administrators can add self-hosted runners. For more information, see "About self-hosted runners" and "Adding self-hosted runners."
Configuring code scanning manually
On your enterprise, navigate to the main page of the repository.
Under the repository name, click Security. If you cannot see the "Security" tab, select the dropdown menu, and then click Security.
To the right of "Code scanning alerts", click Set up code scanning. If "code scanning alerts" is missing, you need to ask an organization owner or repository administrator to enable GitHub Advanced Security. For more information, see "Managing security and analysis settings for your organization" or "Managing security and analysis settings for your repository."
Under "Get started with code scanning", click Set up this workflow on the CodeQL analysis workflow or on a third-party workflow. Workflows are only displayed if they are relevant for the programming languages detected in the repository. The CodeQL analysis workflow is always displayed, but the "Set up this workflow" button is only enabled if CodeQL analysis supports the languages present in the repository.
To customize how code scanning scans your code, edit the workflow.
Generally, you can commit the CodeQL analysis workflow without making any changes to it. However, many of the third-party workflows require additional configuration, so read the comments in the workflow before committing.
For more information, see "Customizing code scanning."
Use the Start commit drop-down, and type a commit message.
Choose whether you'd like to commit directly to the default branch, or create a new branch and start a pull request.
Click Commit new file or Propose new file.
In the suggested CodeQL analysis workflow, code scanning is configured to analyze your code each time you either push a change to the default branch or any protected branches, or raise a pull request against the default branch. As a result, code scanning will now commence.
on:push triggers for code scanning are each useful for different purposes. For more information, see "Customizing code scanning."
Bulk configuration of code scanning
You can configure code scanning in many repositories at once using a script. If you'd like to use a script to raise pull requests that add a GitHub Actions workflow to multiple repositories, see the
jhutchings1/Create-ActionsPRs repository for an example using PowerShell, or
nickliffen/ghas-enablement for teams who do not have PowerShell and instead would like to use NodeJS.
Viewing the logging output from code scanning
After configuring code scanning for your repository, you can watch the output of the actions as they run.
Under your repository name, click Actions.
You'll see a list that includes an entry for running the code scanning workflow. The text of the entry is the title you gave your commit message.
Click the entry for the code scanning workflow.
Click the job name on the left. For example, Analyze (LANGUAGE).
Review the logging output from the actions in this workflow as they run.
Once all jobs are complete, you can view the details of any code scanning alerts that were identified. For more information, see "Managing code scanning alerts for your repository."
Note: If you raised a pull request to add the code scanning workflow to the repository, alerts from that pull request aren't displayed directly on the Code scanning page until the pull request is merged. If any alerts were found you can view these, before the pull request is merged, by clicking the NUMBER alerts found link in the banner on the Code scanning page.
Understanding the pull request checks
Each code scanning workflow you set to run on pull requests always has at least two entries listed in the checks section of a pull request. There is one entry for each of the analysis jobs in the workflow, and a final one for the results of the analysis.
The names of the code scanning analysis checks take the form: "TOOL NAME / JOB NAME (TRIGGER)." For example, for CodeQL, analysis of C++ code has the entry "CodeQL / Analyze (cpp) (pull_request)." You can click Details on a code scanning analysis entry to see logging data. This allows you to debug a problem if the analysis job failed. For example, for code scanning analysis of compiled languages, this can happen if the action can't build the code.
When the code scanning jobs complete, GitHub works out whether any alerts were added by the pull request and adds the "Code scanning results / TOOL NAME" entry to the list of checks. After code scanning has been performed at least once, you can click Details to view the results of the analysis.
If you used a pull request to add code scanning to the repository, you will initially see an "Analysis not found" message when you click Details on the "Code scanning results / TOOL NAME" check.
The table lists one or more categories. Each category relates to specific analyses, for the same tool and commit, performed on a different language or a different part of the code. For each category, the table shows the two analyses that code scanning attempted to compare to determine which alerts were introduced or fixed in the pull request.
For example, in the screenshot above, code scanning found an analysis for the merge commit of the pull request, but no analysis for the head of the main branch.
Reasons for the "Analysis not found" message
After code scanning has analyzed the code in a pull request, it needs to compare the analysis of the topic branch (the branch you used to create the pull request) with the analysis of the base branch (the branch into which you want to merge the pull request). This allows code scanning to compute which alerts are newly introduced by the pull request, which alerts were already present in the base branch, and whether any existing alerts are fixed by the changes in the pull request. Initially, if you use a pull request to add code scanning to a repository, the base branch has not yet been analyzed, so it's not possible to compute these details. In this case, when you click through from the results check on the pull request you will see the "Analysis not found" message.
There are other situations where there may be no analysis for the latest commit to the base branch for a pull request. These include:
The pull request has been raised against a branch other than the default branch, and this branch hasn't been analyzed.
To check whether a branch has been scanned, go to the Code scanning page, click the Branch drop-down and select the relevant branch.
The solution in this situation is to add the name of the base branch to the
on:pull_requestspecification in the code scanning workflow on that branch and then make a change that updates the open pull request that you want to scan.
The latest commit on the base branch for the pull request is currently being analyzed and analysis is not yet available.
Wait a few minutes and then push a change to the pull request to retrigger code scanning.
An error occurred while analyzing the latest commit on the base branch and analysis for that commit isn't available.
Merge a trivial change into the base branch to trigger code scanning on this latest commit, then push a change to the pull request to retrigger code scanning.
After configuring code scanning, and allowing its actions to complete, you can:
- View all of the code scanning alerts generated for this repository. For more information, see "Managing code scanning alerts for your repository."
- View any alerts generated for a pull request submitted after you configure code scanning. For more information, see "Triaging code scanning alerts in pull requests."
- Configure notifications for completed runs. For more information, see "Configuring notifications."
- View the logs generated by the code scanning analysis. For more information, see "Viewing code scanning logs."
- Investigate any problems that occur with the initial configuration of CodeQL code scanning. For more information, see "Troubleshooting the CodeQL workflow."
- Customize how code scanning scans the code in your repository. For more information, see "Customizing code scanning."