Probabilistic model checking is a formal verification technique for the analysis of systems that exhibit stochastic behaviour. It has been successfully employed in an extremely wide array of application domains including, for example, communication and multimedia protocols, security and power management. In this chapter we focus on the applicability of these techniques to the analysis of communication protocols. An analysis of the performance of such systems must successfully incorporate several crucial aspects, including concurrency between multiple components, real-time constraints and randomisation. Probabilistic model checking, in particular using probabilistic timed automata, is well suited to such an analysis. We provide an overview of this area, with emphasis on an industrially relevant case study: the IEEE 802.3 (CSMA/CD) protocol. We also discuss two contrasting approaches to the implementation of probabilistic model checking, namely those based on numerical computation and those based on discrete-event simulation. Using results from the two tools PRISM and APMC, we summarise the advantages, disadvantages and trade-offs associated with these techniques
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