Two Hardware-Based Approaches for Deterministic Multiprocessor Replay

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Executive Summary

Many shared-memory multithreaded executions behave non-deterministically when run on multiprocessor hardware such as emerging multicore systems. Recording nondeterministic events in such executions can enable deterministic replay - e.g., for debugging. Most challenging to record are memory races that can potentially occur on almost all memory references. For this reason, researchers have previously proposed hardware to record key memory race interactions among threads. The two research groups coauthoring this paper independently uncovered a dual approach: focus on recording how long threads execute without interacting. From this common insight, the groups developed two significantly different hardware proposals.

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