Exploiting Hardware Advances for Software Testing and Debugging

Mary Lou Soffa, Kristen R. Walcott, and Jason Mars
University of Virginia, USA
Testing & Debugging

Despite the emerging ubiquity of hardware monitoring mechanisms and prior research work in other fields, the applicability and usefulness of hardware monitoring mechanisms have not been fully scrutinized for software engineering. In this work, we identify several recently developed hardware mechanisms that lend themselves well to structural test coverage analysis and automated fault localization and explore their potential. We discuss key factors impacting the applicability of hardware monitoring mechanism for these software engineering tasks, present novel online analyses leveraging these mechanisms, and provide preliminary results demonstrating the promise of this emerging hardware.