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A testcase generation tool for Persistent Memory Programs.



PMFuzz is a testcase generation tool to generate high-value tests cases for PM testing tools (XFDetector, PMDebugger, PMTest and Pmemcheck)

If you find PMFuzz useful in your research, please cite:

Sihang Liu, Suyash Mahar, Baishakhi Ray, and Samira Khan
PMFuzz: Test Case Generation for Persistent Memory Programs
The International Conference on Architectural Support for Programming Languages and Operating Systems (ASPLOS), 2021


``` @inproceedings{liu2021pmfuzz, title={PMFuzz: Test Case Generation for Persistent Memory Programs}, author={Liu, Sihang and Mahar, Suyash and Ray, Baishakhi and Khan, Samira}, booktitle={Proceedings of the Twenty-sixth International Conference on Architectural Support for Programming Languages and Operating Systems}, year={2021} } ```


PMFuzz was tested using the following environment configuration, other versions may work:

  1. Ubuntu 18.04
  2. NDCTL v64 or higher
  3. libunwind (libunwind-dev)
  4. libini-config (libini-config-dev)
  5. Python 3.8
  6. GNUMake >= 3.82
  7. Kernel version 5.4
  8. Anaconda or virtualenv (recommended)

For compiling documentation:

  1. doxygen
  2. pdflatex
  3. doxypypy

Compiling PMFuzz

Build PMFuzz and AFL

make -j $(nproc --all)

Install PMFuzz

sudo make install

Now, pmfuzz-fuzz should be available as an executable:

pmfuzz-fuzz --help

The following man pages are also installed:

man 1 pmfuzz-fuzz
man 7 libpmfuzz
man 7 libfakepmfuzz

To uninstall PMFuzz, run the following command:

sudo make uninstall

Compiling PMFuzz Docker image

PMFuzz also comes with a docker file to automatically configure and install pmfuzz. To build the image, run the following command from the root of the repository:

docker build -t pmfuzz-v0.9 .

The raw dockerfile is also available here: /Dockerfile.

Using PMFuzz

After installing PMFuzz, use annotations by including the PMFuzz header file:

#include "pmfuzz/pmfuzz.h"

int main() {
	printf("PMFuzz version: %s\n", pmfuzz_version_str);

The program would then have to be linked with either libpmfuzz or libfakepmfuzz. e.g.,

example: example.o
	$(CXX) -o $@ $< -lfakepmfuzz # or -lpmfuzz

To compile a program linked with libpmfuzz, you’d need to use PMFuzz’s AFL++ version of gcc/clang. Check build/bin after building PMFuzz.

For debugging, libfakepmfuzz exports the same interface but no actual tracking mechanism, allowing it to compile with any C/C++ compiler.

An example program is available in src/example. The original ASPLOS 2021 artifact is available at

libpmfuzz API is available at docs/

Compiling Documentation

Run make docs from the root, and all the documentation will be linked in the docs/ directory.

Some man pages are available as markdown formatted files:

  1. docs/
  2. docs/

Running custom configuration

PMFuzz uses a YML based configuration to set different parameters for fuzzing, to write a custom configuration, please follow one of the existing examples in src/pmfuzz/configs/examples/ directory.

More information on PMFuzz’s syntax is here.

Modifying PMFuzz

PMFuzz was written in a modular way allowing part of PMFuzz’s components to be swapped with something that has the same interface. If you have a question please open a new issue or a discussion.

Other useful information

Env variables

NOTE: If a variable doesn’t have a possible value next to it, that variable would be enabled by setting it to any non-empty value (including 0).

  1. USE_FAKE_MMAP=(0,1): Enables fake mmap which mounts an image in the volaile memory.
  2. PMEM_MMAP_HINT=<addr>: Address of the mount point of the pool.
  3. ENABLE_CNST_IMG=(0,1): Disables default PMDK’s behaviour that generates non-identical images for same input.
  4. FI_MODE=(<empty or unset>|IMG_GEN|IMG_REP): See libpmfuzz.c
  5. FAILURE_LIST=<path-to-output-file>: See libpmfuzz.c
  6. PMFUZZ_DEBUG=(0,1): Enables debug output from libpmfuzz
  7. ENABLE_PM_PATH: Enables deep paths in PMFuzz
  8. GEN_ALL_CS: Partially disables the probabilistic generation of crash sites and more of them are generated from libpmfuzz.c
  9. IMG_CREAT_FINJ: Disables the probabilistic generation of crash sites and all of them are generated from libpmfuzz.c
  10. PMFUZZ_SKIP_TC_CHECK: Disable testcase size check in AFL++
  11. PRIMITIVE_BASELINE_MODE: Makes workload delete image on start if the pool exists

Adding git hook for development

Following command adds a pre-commit hook to check if the tests pass:

git config --local core.hooksPath .githooks/

Reasons for Common errors

1. FileNotFoundError for instance’s pid file

Raised when AFL cannot bind to a free core or no core is free.

2. Random tar command failed

Check if no free disk space is left on the device

3. shmget (2): No space left on device


ipcrm -a

Warning: This removes all user owned shared memory segments, don’t run with superuser privilege or on a machine with other critical applications running.


PMFuzz is licensed under BSD-3-clause except noted otherwise.

PMFuzz uses of the following open-source software:

  1. Preeny (license)
    Preeny was modified to fix a bug in desock. All changes are contained in vendor/pathes/preeny_path
  2. AFL++ (license)
    AFL++ was modified to include support for persistent memory tracking for PMFuzz.