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The technique known as ACE Analysis allows researchers to quantify a hardware structure's Architectural Vulnerability Factor (AVF) using simulation. This allows researchers to understand a hardware structure's vulnerability to soft errors and consider design tradeoffs when running specific workloads. AVF is only applicable to hardware, however, and no corresponding concept has yet been introduced for software. Quantifying vulnerability to hardware faults at a software, or program, level would allow researchers to gain a better understanding of the reliability of a program as run on a particular architecture (e.g., X86, PowerPC), independent of the micro-architecture on which it is executed. This ability can provide a basis for future research into reliability techniques at a software level.
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