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In this paper, the authors present r-kernel, an operating system kernel enhancement specifically designed to improve software reliability in networked embedded systems. The key novelty of r-kernel lies in that it exploits the time dimension of software execution to improve robustness. Specifically, r-kernel keeps track of the execution of applications through checkpoints. If one application has been determined to have failed, r-kernel performs rollback operations to restore its state to one of those checkpoints created earlier. For the second round of operation, r-kernel provides a safe mode environment to avoid triggering the same bugs, by dynamically redirecting system calls made by the application.
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