Trustworthy Systems

Towards trustworthy systems


Gernot Heiser

    School of Computer Science and Engineering
    Sydney 2052, Australia


Distinguished Lecturer Series
Institute of Information Science
Academia Sinica


Computer systems are routinely deployed in life- and mission-critical situations, yet in most cases their security, safety or dependability cannot be assured to the degree warranted by the application. In other words, trusted computer systems are rarely trustworthy.

We believe that this is highly unsatisfactory, and have embarked on a research program aimed at bringing reality in line with expectations. In this talk describes NICTA's research agenda for achieving true trustworthiness in systems. The approach is based on establishing the trustworthiness of the lowest level of software, a small microkernel or hypervisor, and then using this platform to provide guarantees to complete systems built on top. A number of important steps in this direction have been achieved, specifically the formal proof of functional correctness of a complete OS microkernel, and subsequently the establishment of further properties, including timeliness and integrity enforcement. Work is progressing on making dependability guarantees for complete real-world systems, comprising millions of lines of code.

BibTeX Entry

    author           = {Gernot Heiser},
    howpublished     = {Distinguished Lecturer Series, Institute of Information Science, Academia Sinica, Taipei, Taiwan},
    month            = oct,
    title            = {Towards Trustworthy Systems},
    video            = {mms://},
    year             = {2011}