You Assume, We Guarantee: Methodology and Case Studies


Thomas A. Henzinger, Shaz Qadeer, and Sriram K. Rajamani

Assume-guarantee reasoning has long been advertised as an important method for decomposing proof obligations in system verification. Refinement mappings (homomorphisms) have long been advertised as an important method for solving the language-inclusion problem in practice. When confronted with large verification problems, we therefore attempted to make use of both techniques. We soon found that rather than offering instant solutions, the success of assume-guarantee reasoning depends critically on the construction of suitable abstraction modules, and the success of refinement checking depends critically on the construction of suitable witness modules. Moreover, as abstractions need to be witnessed, and witnesses abstracted, the process must be iterated. We present here the main lessons we learned from our experiments, in form of a systematic and structured discipline for the compositional verification of reactive modules. An infrastructure to support this discipline, and automate parts of the verification, has been implemented in the tool Mocha.

Proceedings of the Tenth International Conference on Computer-Aided Verification (CAV), Lecture Notes in Computer Science 1427, Springer, 1998, pp. 440-451.


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