Emulation of Software Faults by Selective Mutations at Machine-Code Level



This paper proposes a new technique to emulate software faults by educated mutations introduced at the machine-code level and presents an experimental study on the accuracy of the injected faults. The proposed method consists of finding key programming structures at the machine code-level where high-level software faults can be emulated. The main advantage of emulating software faults at the machine-code level is that software faults can be injected even when the source code of the target application is not available, which is very important for the evaluation of COTS components or for the validation of software fault tolerance techniques in COTS based systems. The technique was evaluated using several real programs and different types of faults and, additionally, it includes our study on the key aspects that may impact on the technique accuracy. The portability of the technique is also addressed. The results show that classes of faults such as assignment, checking, interface, and simple algorithm faults can be directly emulated using this technique.


Software fault emulation, fault representativeness


Software Fault Emulation

Related Project

DBench - Dependability Benchmarking


The 13th, International Symposium on Software Reliability Engineering, ISSRE-2002, November 2002

Cited by

Year 2009 : 1 citations

 Constantin Sarbu, "Operational Pro_ling of OS Drivers?, PhD thesis, University of Darmstadt, Alemanha, 2009

Year 2008 : 1 citations

 Andreas Johansson, "Robustness Evaluation of Operating Systems?, PhD thesis, Darmstadt University, 2008

Year 2006 : 2 citations

 Cheng-Chun Tu, "Modeling Component Failures in Embedded Systems?, Master's Thesis, International Master´s Program in Dependable Computer Systems, Chalmers University of Technology, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Goteborg, Sweden, 2006.

 U. Wappler, C. Fetzer, G. Dresden, "Hardware fault injection using dynamic binary instrumentation: FITgrind?, Sixth European Dependable Computing Conference (EDCC-6), vol. vol. Proceedings Supplemental Volume, October 2006, pp. 37"38.

Year 2005 : 2 citations

 Alexandersson, Ruben; ÿhman, Peter: A technique for fault tolerance assessment of COTS. International Conference on Computer Safety, Reliability and Security (SAFECOMP), 2005.

 Jonas Myhrman, "Studying Fault Injection in WCDMA Base Station Processors Using Simics Simulator?, Master thesis, Chalmers University of Technology, Gotenburgh, Sweden, 2005