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Proof-carrying code (PCC) is a technique that addresses the problem of mobile code safety. It is a mechanism in which a code producer provides both code and a proof certifying that the code will run safely on a code consumer's machine. The code consumer or the host system will validate the proof against a safety policy before executing the source code. Foundational proof-carrying code (FPCC) aims to minimize the amount of code that must be trusted (the “trusted computing base” or TCB) with the goal of providing more flexibility and increased security. In both PCC and FPCC, the verification-condition generator (VCG) constructs the statement of the safety theorem from the source code, and is an important part of the TCB. This paper presents an implementation of a VCG based on a sound set of Hoare-style rules for machine instructions in the context of FPCC. The implementation in OCaml is described and examples illustrating the approach are given. The output of our VCG is a list of verification conditions that are directly inserted into a proof script that serves as input to the Coq proof assistant, and represents an important part of the safety proofs of our programs. We also present examples showing how these verification conditions are used to complete the proofs of safety. This work represents an important step in automating proofs for PCC.
Date of Conference: 19-21 July 2011