[TUHS] DEC Compilers (was: Re: SDB debugger

Dr Iain Maoileoin iain at csp-partnership.co.uk
Wed May 6 04:53:59 AEST 2020

> On 5 May 2020, at 18:36, Paul Winalski <paul.winalski at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 5/4/20, Win Treese <treese at acm.org> wrote:
>> ….
>> This caused a little bit of consternation with some of the compiler teams at
>> first.
> I remember that very well.  IIRC it was called fuzz testing, and
> ….
> compiler team has also used random testing technology.
>> [1] https://www.hpl.hp.com/hpjournal/dtj/vol10num1/vol10num1art9.pdf
> -Paul W.

Way back in the deep past - late 70s I think - The Computer Science Department at Strathclyde  Uni in Scotland had a contract to develop a test suite generator for the C compiler on the ICL perq computer.  I think the testing/development for that compiler was happening at Dalkeith in Scotland - but dont quote me.

Like the above we generated programs (e.g. mixing short, int, long signed and unsigned and doing all sort of ops on them).  The expected output was computed by the same C program running on a BSD unix vax and something else.  We had a few issues with the vax and the other system disagreeing on the arithmetic results, but generally we were confident the random C programs would reasonably test the system under test.  We did not get to see the results of the tests,  we developed the suite and handed it over to ICL.

Overall we were not impressed by the PERQ and on a trip to Rutherford Appleton Labs (RAL) one November there was a HUGE bonfire being prepared (for our Guy Falkes(sp) celebration).  The bonfire was generally comprised of the PERQ cardboard packing cases.  It just looked like they were planning to burn the PERQs themselves.  We agreed with the sentiment.

More information about the TUHS mailing list