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Fault-injection-based testing of fault-tolerant algorithms in message-passing parallel computers

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2 Author(s)
Blough, D.M. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., California Univ., Irvine, CA, USA ; Torii, T.

Distributed-memory parallel computers offer inherent redundancy that can be exploited to provide software-implemented fault tolerance. Numerous algorithms have been developed for fault-tolerant unicast communication, fault-tolerant broadcast, fault diagnosis, check-point/rollback, various consensus problems, algorithm-based fault tolerance, etc. Correctness proofs for these algorithms tend to be quite complex and, as a result, are error-prone. Furthermore, the way in which an algorithm is implemented can have dramatic impact on its correctness. Fault-injection-based testing is, therefore, an essential component of the validation procedure for these algorithms, which can complement other methods such as formal verification. The authors present a methodology for fault injection in distributed-memory parallel computers that use a message-passing paradigm. Their approach is based on injection of faults into interprocessor communications, and allows emulation of fault models commonly used in design of fault-tolerant parallel algorithms. The methodology has been applied in a tool for fault injection in Intel iPSC/860 multicomputers, and has been demonstrated through the extensive testing of a fault-tolerant broadcast algorithm.

Published in:

Fault-Tolerant Computing, 1997. FTCS-27. Digest of Papers., Twenty-Seventh Annual International Symposium on

Date of Conference:

24-27 June 1997