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Formal Hardware Verification with BDDs: An Introduction
"... This paper is a brief introduction to the main paradigms for using BDDs in formal hardware verification. The paper addresses two audiences: for people doing theoretical BDD research, the paper gives a glimpse of the problems in the main application area, and ..."
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This paper is a brief introduction to the main paradigms for using BDDs in formal hardware verification. The paper addresses two audiences: for people doing theoretical BDD research, the paper gives a glimpse of the problems in the main application area, and
Verity  a Formal Verification Program for Custom CMOS Circuits
 IBM JOURNAL OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
, 1994
"... In an effort to fully exploit CMOS performance, custom design techniques are used extensively in commercial microprocessor design. However, given the complexity of current generation processors and the necessity for manual designer intervention throughout the design process, proving design correc ..."
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Cited by 19 (5 self)
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In an effort to fully exploit CMOS performance, custom design techniques are used extensively in commercial microprocessor design. However, given the complexity of current generation processors and the necessity for manual designer intervention throughout the design process, proving design correctness is a major concern. In this paper we discuss Verity, a formal verification program for symbolically proving the equivalence between a highlevel design specification and a MOS transistorlevel implementation. Verity
FORMAL HARDWARE VERIFICATION BY SYMBOLIC TRAJECTORY EVALUATION
, 1997
"... Formal verification uses a set of languages, tools, and techniques to mathematically reason about the correctness of a hardware system. The form of mathematical reasoning is dependent upon the hardware system. This thesis concentrates on hardware systems that have a simple deterministic highlevel s ..."
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Cited by 18 (1 self)
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Formal verification uses a set of languages, tools, and techniques to mathematically reason about the correctness of a hardware system. The form of mathematical reasoning is dependent upon the hardware system. This thesis concentrates on hardware systems that have a simple deterministic highlevel specification but have implementations that exhibit highly nondeterministic behaviors. A typical example of such hardware systems are processors. At the high level, the sequencing model inherent in processors is the sequential execution model. The underlying implementation, however, uses features such as nondeterministic interface protocols, instruction pipelines, and multiple instruction issue which leads to nondeterministic behaviors. The goal is to develop a methodology with which a designer can show that a circuit fulfills the abstract specification of the desired system behavior. The abstract specification describes the highlevel behavior of the system independent of any timing or implementation details. The natural specification of a processor is the instruction set architecture. The specification is defined as a set of abstract assertions defining the effect of each operation on the uservisible state. An implementation mapping is used to relate abstract states to detailed circuit states. The mapping captures the microarchitecture of an implementation of the processor. Symbolic Trajectory Evaluation is used to verify that the circuit fulfills each individual abstract assertion under the implementation mapping. Symbolic Trajectory Evaluation can be considered to be a hybrid approach based on symbolic simulation and model checking algorithms. The methodology has been applied to the fixed point unit of a superscalar processor that implements the PowerPC architecture. The processor represents a significant leap of complexity compared to previous attempts at formal verification of processors. Our approach seems to be the first one that can truly deal with the complexity of pipeline interlocks.
Techniques For Efficient Formal Verification Using Binary Decision Diagrams
, 1995
"... The appeal of automatic formal verification is that it's automatic  minimal human labor and expertise should be needed to get useful results and counterexamples. BDD(binary decision diagram)based approaches have promised to allow automatic verification of complex, real systems. For large cl ..."
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The appeal of automatic formal verification is that it's automatic  minimal human labor and expertise should be needed to get useful results and counterexamples. BDD(binary decision diagram)based approaches have promised to allow automatic verification of complex, real systems. For large classes of problems, however, (including many distributed protocols, multiprocessor systems, and network architectures) this promise has yet to be fulfilled. Indeed, the few successes have required extensive time and effort from sophisticated researchers in the field. Clearly, techniques are needed that are more sophisticated than the obvious direct implementation of theoretical results. This thesis addresses that need, emphasizing an application domain that has been particularly difficult for BDDbased methods  highlevel models of systems or distributed protocols  rather than gatelevel descriptions of circuits. Additionally, the emphasis is on providing useful debugging information for the...
Parametric Circuit Representation Using Inductive Boolean Functions
 In Computer Aided Verification, CAV '93, LNCS 697
, 1993
"... . We have developed a methodology based on symbolic manipulation of inductive Boolean functions (IBFs) for formal verification of inductivelydefined hardware. This methodology combines the techniques of reasoning by induction and symbolic tautologychecking in an automated and potentially efficient ..."
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. We have developed a methodology based on symbolic manipulation of inductive Boolean functions (IBFs) for formal verification of inductivelydefined hardware. This methodology combines the techniques of reasoning by induction and symbolic tautologychecking in an automated and potentially efficient way. In this paper, we describe a component of this methodology that regards various mechanisms used to represent inductivelydefined circuits in the form of IBFs. The focus is on general parameterization issues, such as multiple parameter functions, multiple output functions, interaction of different parameters for supporting compositions etc. These mechanisms, which may be useful in other applications involving parametric circuit descriptions, are illustrated through practical circuit examples along with preliminary results. We also describe an application of our formal verification methodology, where a proof by induction is performed by automatic symbolic manipulation of parametric circuit...
Formal Verification of Safety Properties in Timed Circuits
, 2000
"... The incorporation of timing makes circuit verification computationally expensive. This paper proposes a new approach for the verification of timed circuits. Rather than calculating the exact timed state space, a conservative overestimation that fulfills the property under verification is derived. Ti ..."
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The incorporation of timing makes circuit verification computationally expensive. This paper proposes a new approach for the verification of timed circuits. Rather than calculating the exact timed state space, a conservative overestimation that fulfills the property under verification is derived. Timing analysis with absolute delays is efficiently performed at the level of event structures and transformed into a set of relative timing constraints. With this approach, conventional symbolic techniques for reachability analysis can be efficiently combined with timing analysis. Moreover, the set of timing constraints used to prove the correctness of the circuit can also be reported for backannotation purposes. Some preliminary results obtained by a naive implementation of the approach show that systems with more than 10^6 untimed states can be verified.
Formal Synthesis in Circuit Design  A Classification and Survey
, 1996
"... . This article gives a survey on different methods of formal synthesis. We define what we mean by the term formal synthesis and delimit it from the other formal methods that can also be used to guarantee the correctness of an implementation. A possible classification scheme for formal synthesis m ..."
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. This article gives a survey on different methods of formal synthesis. We define what we mean by the term formal synthesis and delimit it from the other formal methods that can also be used to guarantee the correctness of an implementation. A possible classification scheme for formal synthesis methods is then introduced, based on which some significant research activities are classified and summarized. We also briefly introduce our own approach towards the formal synthesis of hardware. Finally, we compare these approaches from different points of view. 1 Introduction In everyday use, synthesis means putting together of parts or elements so as to make up a complex whole. However in the circuit design domain, synthesis stands for a stepwise refinement of circuit descriptions from higher levels of abstraction (specifications) to lower ones (implementations), including optimizations within one abstraction level. Synthesis can be performed by hand for small circuits. Nowadays mor...
A Foundation for FlowBased Program Matching Using Temporal Logic and Model Checking
"... Reasoning about program controlflow paths is an important functionality of a number of recent program matching languages and associated searching and transformation tools. Temporal logic provides a welldefined means of expressing properties of controlflow paths in programs, and indeed an extensio ..."
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Reasoning about program controlflow paths is an important functionality of a number of recent program matching languages and associated searching and transformation tools. Temporal logic provides a welldefined means of expressing properties of controlflow paths in programs, and indeed an extension of the temporal logic CTL has been applied to the problem of specifying and verifying the transformations commonly performed by optimizing compilers. Nevertheless, in developing the Coccinelle program transformation tool for performing Linux collateral evolutions in systems code, we have found that existing variants of CTL do not adequately support rules that transform subterms other than the ones matching an entire formula. Being able to transform any of the subterms of a matched term seems essential in the domain targeted by Coccinelle. In this paper, we propose an extension to CTL named CTLVW (CTL with variables and witnesses) that is a suitable basis for the semantics and implementation of the Coccinelle’s program matching language. Our extension to CTL includes existential quantification over program fragments, which allows metavariables in the program matching language to range over different values within different controlflow paths, and a notion of witnesses that record such existential bindings for use in the subsequent program transformation process. We formalize CTLVW and describe its use in the context of Coccinelle. We then assess the performance of the approach in practice, using a transformation rule that fixes several reference count bugs in Linux code.
Probabilistic Analysis using Theorem Proving
"... Abstract. Traditionally, computer simulation techniques are used to perform probabilistic analysis. However, they provide less accurate results and cannot handle largescale problems due to their enormous CPU time requirements. Recently, a significant amount of formalization has been done in the HOL ..."
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Abstract. Traditionally, computer simulation techniques are used to perform probabilistic analysis. However, they provide less accurate results and cannot handle largescale problems due to their enormous CPU time requirements. Recently, a significant amount of formalization has been done in the HOL theorem prover that allows us to conduct precise probabilistic analysis using theorem proving and thus overcome the limitations of the simulation based probabilistic analysis approach. Some major contributions include the formalization of both discrete and continuous random variables and the verification of some of their corresponding probabilistic and statistical properties. This paper presents a concise description of the infrastructures behind these capabilities and the utilization of these features to conduct the probabilistic analysis of realworld systems. For illustration purposes, the paper describes the theorem proving based probabilistic analysis of three examples, i.e., the roundoff error of a digital processor, the Coupon Collector’s problem and the StopandWait protocol. 1