Analysing Mutual Exclusion using Process Algebra with Signals

Victor Dyseryn
(Ecole Polytechnique, Paris, France)
Rob van Glabbeek
(Data61, CSIRO, Sydney, Australia)
Peter Höfner
(Data61, CSIRO, Sydney, Australia)

In contrast to common belief, the Calculus of Communicating Systems (CCS) and similar process algebras lack the expressive power to accurately capture mutual exclusion protocols without enriching the language with fairness assumptions. Adding a fairness assumption to implement a mutual exclusion protocol seems counter-intuitive. We employ a signalling operator, which can be combined with CCS, or other process calculi, and show that this minimal extension is expressive enough to model mutual exclusion: we confirm the correctness of Peterson's mutual exclusion algorithm for two processes, as well as Lamport's bakery algorithm, under reasonable assumptions on the underlying memory model. The correctness of Peterson's algorithm for more than two processes requires stronger, less realistic assumptions on the underlying memory model.

In Kirstin Peters and Simone Tini: Proceedings Combined 24th International Workshop on Expressiveness in Concurrency and 14th Workshop on Structural Operational Semantics (EXPRESS/SOS 2017), Berlin, Germany, 4th September 2017, Electronic Proceedings in Theoretical Computer Science 255, pp. 18–34.
Published: 31st August 2017.

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