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Reflections on the Pentium Division Bug
April 1996 (vol. 45 no. 4)
pp. 385-393

Abstract—We review the field of result-checking and suggest that it be extended to a methodology for enforcing hardware/software reliability. We thereby formulate a vision for "self-monitoring" hardware/software whose reliability is augmented through embedded suites of run-time correctness checkers. In particular, we suggest that embedded checkers and correctors may be employed to safeguard against arithmetic errors such as that which has bedeviled the Intel Pentium Microprocessor. We specify checkers and correctors suitable for monitoring the multiplication and division functionalities of an arbitrary arithmetic processor and seamlessly correcting erroneous output which may occur for any reason during the lifetime of the chip.

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Index Terms:
Built-in testing, concurrent error detection, fault tolerance, Pentium, reliability, result-checking, verification.
Citation:
Manuel Blum, Hal Wasserman, "Reflections on the Pentium Division Bug," IEEE Transactions on Computers, vol. 45, no. 4, pp. 385-393, April 1996, doi:10.1109/12.494097
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