Correct program parallelisations

S. Blom, S. Darabi, M. Huisman, M. Safari*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
114 Downloads (Pure)


A commonly used approach to develop deterministic parallel programs is to augment a sequential program with compiler directives that indicate which program blocks may potentially be executed in parallel. This paper develops a verification technique to reason about such compiler directives, in particular to show that they do not change the behaviour of the program. Moreover, the verification technique is tool-supported and can be combined with proving functional correctness of the program. To develop our verification technique, we propose a simple intermediate representation (syntax and semantics) that captures the main forms of deterministic parallel programs. This language distinguishes three kinds of basic blocks: parallel, vectorised and sequential blocks, which can be composed using three different composition operators: sequential, parallel and fusion composition. We show how a widely used subset of OpenMP can be encoded into this intermediate representation. Our verification technique builds on the notion of iteration contract to specify the behaviour of basic blocks; we show that if iteration contracts are manually specified for single blocks, then that is sufficient to automatically reason about data race freedom of the composed program. Moreover, we also show that it is sufficient to establish functional correctness on a linearised version of the original program to conclude functional correctness of the parallel program. Finally, we exemplify our approach on an example OpenMP program, and we discuss how tool support is provided.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)741-763
Number of pages23
JournalInternational journal on software tools for technology transfer
Issue number5
Early online date14 Feb 2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021


  • Deterministic parallel programming
  • Parallelisation
  • Software verification
  • UT-Hybrid-D


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