Date: 02 May 2001

Automatically validating temporal safety properties of interfaces

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We present a process for validating temporal safety properties of software that uses a well-defined interface. The process requires only that the user state the property of interest. It then automatically creates abstractions of C code using iterative refinement, based on the given property. The process is realized in the SLAM toolkit, which consists of a model checker, predicate abstraction tool and predicate discovery tool. We have applied the SLAM toolkit to a number of Windows NT device drivers to validate critical safety properties such as correct locking behavior. We have found that the process converges on a set of predicates powerful enough to validate properties in just a few iterations.