A template-based approach for the generation of abstractable and reducible models of featured networks

Miller, A., Calder, M. and Donaldson, A.F. (2007) A template-based approach for the generation of abstractable and reducible models of featured networks. Computer Networks, 51(2), pp. 439-455. (doi: 10.1016/j.comnet.2006.08.009)



Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.comnet.2006.08.009


We investigate the relationship between symmetry reduction and inductive reasoning when applied to model checking networks of featured components. Popular reduction techniques for combatting state space explosion in model checking, like abstraction and symmetry reduction, can only be applied effectively when the natural symmetry of a system is not destroyed during specification. We introduce a property which ensures this is preserved, open symmetry. We describe a template-based approach for the construction of open symmetric Promela specifications of featured systems. For certain systems (safely featured parameterised systems) our generated specifications are suitable for conversion to abstract specifications representing any size of network. This enables feature interaction analysis to be carried out, via model checking and induction, for systems of any number of featured components. In addition, we show how, for any balanced network of components, by using a graphical representation of the features and the process communication structure, a group of permutations of the underlying state space of the generated specification can be determined easily. Due to the open symmetry of our Promela specifications, this group of permutations can be used directly for symmetry reduced model checking. The main contributions of this paper are an automatic method for developing open symmetric specifications which can be used for generic feature interaction analysis, and the novel application of symmetry detection and reduction in the context of model checking featured networks. We apply our techniques to a well known example of a featured network – an email system.

Item Type:Articles
Keywords:Model checking; Feature interaction; Induction; Abstraction; Symmetry reduction
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Calder, Professor Muffy and Miller, Professor Alice
Authors: Miller, A., Calder, M., and Donaldson, A.F.
Subjects:Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Computing Science
Journal Name:Computer Networks
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2007 Elsevier
First Published:First published in Computer Networks 51(2):439-455
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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