Journal of Electronic Testing

, Volume 31, Issue 2, pp 139–150 | Cite as

Application-Based Analysis of Register File Criticality for Reliability Assessment in Embedded Microprocessors

  • Felipe Restrepo-Calle
  • Sergio Cuenca-Asensi
  • Antonio Martínez-Álvarez
  • Eduardo Chielle
  • Fernanda Lima Kastensmidt


There is an increasing concern to reduce the cost and overheads during the development of reliable systems. Selective protection of most critical parts of the systems represents a viable solution to obtain a high level of reliability at a fraction of the cost. In particular to design a selective fault mitigation strategy for processor-based systems, it is mandatory to identify and prioritize the most vulnerable registers in the register file as best candidates to be protected (hardened). This paper presents an application-based metric to estimate the criticality of each register from the microprocessor register file in microprocessor-based systems. The proposed metric relies on the combination of three different criteria based on common features of executed applications. The applicability and accuracy of our proposal have been evaluated in a set of applications running in different microprocessors. Results show a significant improvement in accuracy compared to previous approaches and regardless of the underlying architecture.


Embedded systems Metrics Microprocessors Reliability 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Felipe Restrepo-Calle
    • 1
  • Sergio Cuenca-Asensi
    • 2
  • Antonio Martínez-Álvarez
    • 2
  • Eduardo Chielle
    • 3
  • Fernanda Lima Kastensmidt
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Systems and Industrial EngineeringUniversidad Nacional de ColombiaBogotáColombia
  2. 2.Computer Technology DepartmentUniversity of AlicanteAlicanteSpain
  3. 3.Instituto de Informática, PPGC and PGMICROUniversidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS)Porto AlegreBrazil

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