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Comment: Re:How about (Score 2, Insightful) 234

by mmcdouga (#29922341) Attached to: Fixing Bugs, But Bypassing the Source Code

Even if the modified program fails to crash and fails to trigger the anomaly detector, there's no way to prove that the program still works as intended. For example, suppose the fix of an overflow also elides the initialization of some other variable, which results in data corruption? How is that better than an overflow/crash?

The approach is valuable even if you can't prove the program still works as intended (which is impossible in general). The goal is to have a program that works a bit better than it would without ClearView.

For example, the unmodified web server may have a buffer overflow that can lead to the system being hijacked. ClearView modifies the program so that a connection is prematurely dropped, but hijacking is prevented. Neither behavior was what was the programmer intended, but we've taken a serious bug and replaced it with a minor bug. That's valuable.

The real issue is whether the modifications do in fact make the program work a bit better. Rinard's experiments indicate that they do, at least for the applications used in the experiments.

Get hold of portable property. -- Charles Dickens, "Great Expectations"

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