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Selected dynamic issues in software model checking

  • Viet Yen Nguyen
  • Theo C. Ruys
TACAS 2009

Abstract

Software model checking has come of age. After one and a half decade, several successful model checking tools have emerged. One of the most prominent approaches is the virtual machine-based approach, pioneered by Java PathFinder (jpf). And although the virtual machine-based approach has been rather successful, it lags behind classic model checking in terms of speed and memory consumption. Fortunately, with respect to the implementation of virtual-based model checkers, there is still ample room for innovation and optimizations. This paper presents three novel (optimization) techniques that have been implemented into MoonWalker, a software model checker for .Net programs. (a) .Net specifies an exception handling mechanism called structured exception handling (seh). seh is one of the most sophisticated and fine-grained exception handling mechanisms for application platforms. Its implementation within MoonWalker is the most sophisticated in a model checker to date. (b) To decrease memory use within MoonWalker, a collapsing scheme has been developed for collapsing the metadata used by stateful dynamic partial order reduction. The reduction of memory is—in some cases—more than a factor of two. (c) Finally, to decrease the verification time, the memoised garbage collection (mgc) algorithm has been developed. It has a lower time-complexity than the often used Mark & Sweep garbage collector. Its main idea is that it only traverses changed parts of the heap instead of the full heap. The average time reduction is up to 25%. We have used the Java Grande Forum benchmark suite to compare MoonWalker against jpf and observed that the average performance of MoonWalker is on par with jpf.

Keywords

Model checking .NET Java  Partial order reduction Garbage collection 

Abbreviations

cil

Common intermediate language

cli

Common language infrastructure

Config.

Configuration

dfs

Depth-first search

dpor

Dynamic partial order reduction

ie

Instruction executor

ii

Interleaving information

jgf

Java Grande Forum

jpf

Java PathFinder

jvm

Java virtual machine

ltl

Linear temporal logic

mgc

Memoised garbage collection

m&s

Mark & Sweep

por

Partial order reduction

sdpor

Stateful dynamic partial order reduction

seh

Structured exception handling

sii

Summarised interleaving information

ves

Virtual execution system

vm

Virtual machine

xil

Abstraction of the CIL instruction language

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Software Modelling and Verification GroupRWTH Aachen UniversityAachenGermany
  2. 2.RUwise ConsultancyDeventerThe Netherlands

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