Sylvan: multi-core framework for decision diagrams



Published in: {STTT} pp 675–696

DOI: 10.1007/s10009-016-0433-2



Decision diagrams, such as binary decision diagrams, multi-terminal binary decision diagrams and multi-valued decision diagrams, play an important role in various fields. They are especially useful to represent the characteristic function of sets of states and transitions in symbolic model checking. Most implementations of decision diagrams do not parallelize the decision diagram operations. As performance gains in the current era now mostly come from parallel processing, an ongoing challenge is to develop datastructures and algorithms for modern multi-core architectures. The decision diagram package Sylvan provides a contribution by implementing parallelized decision diagram operations and thus allowing sequential algorithms that use decision diagrams to exploit the power of multi-core machines. This paper discusses the design and implementation of Sylvan, especially an improvement to the lock-free unique table that uses bit arrays, the concurrent operation cache and the implementation of parallel garbage collection. We extend Sylvan with multi-terminal binary decision diagrams for integers, real numbers and rational numbers. This extension also allows for custom MTBDD leaves and operations and we provide an example implementation of GMP rational numbers. Furthermore, we show how the provided framework can be integrated in existing tools to provide out-of-the-box parallel BDD algorithms, as well as support for the parallelization of higher-level algorithms. As a case study, we parallelize on-the-fly symbolic reachability in the model checking toolset LTSmin. We experimentally demonstrate that the parallelization of symbolic model checking for explicit-state modeling languages, as supported by LTSmin, scales well. We also show that improvements in the design of the unique table result in faster execution of on-the-fly symbolic reachability.

BibTeX entry:

 author = {Tom van Dijk and Jaco van de Pol},
 doi = {10.1007/s10009-016-0433-2},
 journal = {{STTT}},
 number = {6},
 pages = {675--696},
 title = {Sylvan: multi-core framework for decision diagrams},
 volume = {19},
 year = {2017}