Verifying Temporal Heap Properties Specified via Evolution Logic

Eran Yahav, Thomas Reps, Mooly Sagiv, and Reinhard Wilhelm
University of Wisconsin

This paper addresses the problem of establishing temporal properties of programs written in languages, such as Java, that make extensive use of the heap to allocate -- and deallocate -- new objects and threads. Establishing liveness properties is a particularly hard challenge. One of the crucial obstacles is that heap locations have no static names and the number of heap locations is unbounded. The paper presents a framework for the verification of Java-like programs. Unlike classical model checking, which uses propositional temporal logic, we use first-order temporal logic to specify temporal properties of heap evolutions; this logic allows domain changes to be expressed, which permits allocation and deallocation to be modelled naturally. The paper also presents an abstract-interpretation algorithm that automatically verifies temporal properties expressed using the logic.

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