344 research outputs found

    Software-Based Self-Test of Set-Associative Cache Memories

    Get PDF
    Embedded microprocessor cache memories suffer from limited observability and controllability creating problems during in-system tests. This paper presents a procedure to transform traditional march tests into software-based self-test programs for set-associative cache memories with LRU replacement. Among all the different cache blocks in a microprocessor, testing instruction caches represents a major challenge due to limitations in two areas: 1) test patterns which must be composed of valid instruction opcodes and 2) test result observability: the results can only be observed through the results of executed instructions. For these reasons, the proposed methodology will concentrate on the implementation of test programs for instruction caches. The main contribution of this work lies in the possibility of applying state-of-the-art memory test algorithms to embedded cache memories without introducing any hardware or performance overheads and guaranteeing the detection of typical faults arising in nanometer CMOS technologie

    DFT and BIST of a multichip module for high-energy physics experiments

    Get PDF
    Engineers at Politecnico di Torino designed a multichip module for high-energy physics experiments conducted on the Large Hadron Collider. An array of these MCMs handles multichannel data acquisition and signal processing. Testing the MCM from board to die level required a combination of DFT strategie

    A Self-Repairing Execution Unit for Microprogrammed Processors

    Get PDF
    Describes a processor which dynamically reconfigures its internal microcode to execute each instruction using only fault-free blocks from the execution unit. Working without redundant or spare computational blocks, this self-repair approach permits a graceful performance degradatio

    A FPGA-Based Reconfigurable Software Architecture for Highly Dependable Systems

    Get PDF
    Nowadays, systems-on-chip are commonly equipped with reconfigurable hardware. The use of hybrid architectures based on a mixture of general purpose processors and reconfigurable components has gained importance across the scientific community allowing a significant improvement of computational performance. Along with the demand for performance, the great sensitivity of reconfigurable hardware devices to physical defects lead to the request of highly dependable and fault tolerant systems. This paper proposes an FPGA-based reconfigurable software architecture able to abstract the underlying hardware platform giving an homogeneous view of it. The abstraction mechanism is used to implement fault tolerance mechanisms with a minimum impact on the system performanc

    EDACs and test integration strategies for NAND flash memories

    Get PDF
    Mission-critical applications usually presents several critical issues: the required level of dependability of the whole mission always implies to address different and contrasting dimensions and to evaluate the tradeoffs among them. A mass-memory device is always needed in all mission-critical applications: NAND flash-memories could be used for this goal. Error Detection And Correction (EDAC) techniques are needed to improve dependability of flash-memory devices. However also testing strategies need to be explored in order to provide highly dependable systems. Integrating these two main aspects results in providing a fault-tolerant mass-memory device, but no systematic approach has so far been proposed to consider them as a whole. As a consequence a novel strategy integrating a particular code-based design environment with newly selected testing strategies is presented in this pape

    Hardware security, vulnerabilities, and attacks: a comprehensive taxonomy

    Get PDF
    Information Systems, increasingly present in a world that goes towards complete digitalization, can be seen as complex systems at the base of which is the hardware. When dealing with the security of these systems to stop possible intrusions and malicious uses, the analysis must necessarily include the possible vulnerabilities that can be found at the hardware level, since their exploitation can make all defenses implemented at web or software level ineffective. In this paper, we propose a meaningful and comprehensive taxonomy for the vulnerabilities affecting the hardware and the attacks that exploit them to compromise the system, also giving a definition of Hardware Security, in order to clarify a concept often confused with other domains, even in the literature

    Automated Synthesis of SEU Tolerant Architectures from OO Descriptions

    Get PDF
    SEU faults are a well-known problem in aerospace environment but recently their relevance grew up also at ground level in commodity applications coupled, in this frame, with strong economic constraints in terms of costs reduction. On the other hand, latest hardware description languages and synthesis tools allow reducing the boundary between software and hardware domains making the high-level descriptions of hardware components very similar to software programs. Moving from these considerations, the present paper analyses the possibility of reusing Software Implemented Hardware Fault Tolerance (SIHFT) techniques, typically exploited in micro-processor based systems, to design SEU tolerant architectures. The main characteristics of SIHFT techniques have been examined as well as how they have to be modified to be compatible with the synthesis flow. A complete environment is provided to automate the design instrumentation using the proposed techniques, and to perform fault injection experiments both at behavioural and gate level. Preliminary results presented in this paper show the effectiveness of the approach in terms of reliability improvement and reduced design effort

    Agent Based Test and Repair of Distributed Systems

    Get PDF
    This article demonstrates how to use intelligent agents for testing and repairing a distributed system, whose elements may or may not have embedded BIST (Built-In Self-Test) and BISR (Built-In Self-Repair) facilities. Agents are software modules that perform monitoring, diagnosis and repair of the faults. They form together a society whose members communicate, set goals and solve tasks. An experimental solution is presented, and future developments of the proposed approach are explore

    FLARE: A design environment for FLASH-based space applications

    Get PDF
    Designing a mass-memory device (i.e., a solid-state recorder) is one of the typical issues of mission-critical space system applications. Flash-memories could be used for this goal: a huge number of parameters and trade-offs need to be explored. Flash-memories are nonvolatile, shock-resistant and power-economic, but in turn have different drawback: e.g., their cost is higher than normal hard disk and the number of erasure cycles is bounded. Moreover space environment presents various issues especially because of radiations: different and quite often contrasting dimensions need to be explored during the design of a flash-memory based solid-state recorder. No systematic approach has so far been proposed to consider them all as a whole: as a consequence a novel design environment currently under development is aimed at supporting the design of flash-based mass-memory device for space application
    corecore