Software-based Self-Testing using Bounded Model Checking for Out-of-Order Superscalar Processors
IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems
Generating functional tests for processors has been a challenging problem for decades in the VLSI testing field. This paper presents a method that generates software-based self-tests (SBST) by leveraging bounded model checking techniques (BMC) and targeting, for the first time, out-of-order (OOE) superscalar processors. To combat the state-space explosion associated with BMC, the proposed method starts by combining module-level abstraction-refinement with slicing to reduce the size of the model under verification. Next, an off-the-shelf BMC solver is used on the obtained extended finite-state machines (EFSM) to generate the leading sequences that are necessary to excite internal processor functions. Finally, constrained automatic test-pattern generation is used to cover all structural faults within every function excited by the obtained leading sequences. Experimental results show that the proposed method leads to extremely high fault coverage on the critical components corresponding to OOE operations in functional mode. The method therefore helps in tackling the over-testing problem that is inherent to the full-scan test approach.
[ZCPR19] Ying Zhang, Krishnendu Chakrabarty, Zebo Peng, Ahmed Rezine, Huawei Li, Petru Eles, Jianhui Jiang, "Software-based Self-Testing using Bounded Model Checking for Out-of-Order Superscalar Processors", IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems