Towards Production-Run Heisenbugs Reproduction on Commercial Hardware


Shiyou Huang, Bowen Cai, and Jeff Huang, Texas A&M University


We present a new technique, H3, for reproducing Heisenbugs in production runs on commercial hardware. H3 integrates the hardware control flow tracing capability provided in recent Intel processors with symbolic constraint analysis. Compared to a state-of-the-art solution, CLAP, this integration allows H3 to reproduce failures with much lower runtime overhead and much more compact trace. Moreover, it allows us to develop a highly effective core-based constraint reduction technique that significantly reduces the complexity of the generated symbolic constraints. H3 has been implemented for C/C++ and evaluated on both popular benchmarks and real-world applications. It reproduces real-world Heisenbugs with overhead ranging between 1.4%- 23.4%, up to 8X more efficient than CLAP, and incurs only 4.9% runtime overhead on PARSEC benchmarks.

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@inproceedings {203191,
author = {Shiyou Huang and Bowen Cai and Jeff Huang},
title = {Towards {Production-Run} Heisenbugs Reproduction on Commercial Hardware},
booktitle = {2017 USENIX Annual Technical Conference (USENIX ATC 17)},
year = {2017},
isbn = {978-1-931971-38-6},
address = {Santa Clara, CA},
pages = {403--415},
url = {},
publisher = {USENIX Association},
month = jul,

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