Intra-module Inference

Shuvendu K. Lahiri, Shaz Qadeer, Juan P. Galeotti, Jan W. Voung, Thomas Wies

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Contract-based property checkers hold the potential for precise, scalable, and incremental reasoning. However, it is difficult to apply such checkers to large program modules because they require programmers to provide detailed contracts, including an interface specification, module invariants, and internal specifications. We argue that given a suitably rich assertion language, modest effort suffices to document the interface specification and the module invariants. However, the burden of providing internal specifications is still significant and remains a deterrent to the use of contract-based checkers. Therefore, we consider the problem of intra-module inference, which aims to infer annotations for internal procedures and loops, given the interface specification and the module invariants. We provide simple and scalable techniques to search for a broad class of desired internal annotations, comprising quantifiers and Boolean connectives, guided by the module specification. We have validated our ideas by building a prototype verifier and using it to verify several properties on Windows device drivers with zero false alarms and small annotation overhead. These drivers are complex; they contain thousands of lines and use dynamic data structures such as linked lists and arrays. Our technique significantly improves the soundness, precision, and coverage of verification of these programs compared to earlier techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComputer Aided Verification - 21st International Conference, CAV 2009, Proceedings
Number of pages16
StatePublished - 2009
Event21st International Conference on Computer Aided Verification, CAV 2009 - Grenoble, France
Duration: Jun 26 2009Jul 2 2009

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume5643 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Other21st International Conference on Computer Aided Verification, CAV 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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