Dan Liew

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Symbolic execution of verification languages and floating-point code


The focus of this thesis is a program analysis technique named symbolic execution. We present three main contributions to this field.

First, an investigation into comparing several state-of-the-art program analysis tools at the level of an intermediate verification language over a large set of benchmarks, and improvements to the state-of-the-art of symbolic execution for this language. This is explored via a new tool, Symbooglix, that operates on the Boogie intermediate verification language.

Second, an investigation into performing symbolic execution of floating-point programs via a standardised theory of floating-point arithmetic that is supported by several existing constraint solvers. This is investigated via two independent extensions of the KLEE symbolic execution engine to support reasoning about floating-point operations (with one tool developed by the thesis author).

Third, an investigation into the use of coverage-guided fuzzing as a means for solving constraints over finite data types, inspired by the difficulties associated with solving floating-point constraints. The associated prototype tool, JFS, which builds on the LibFuzzer project, can at present be applied to a wide range of SMT queries over bit-vector and floating-point variables, and shows promise on floating-point constraints.