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Hardware support for memory safety paper accepted to ASPLOS 2021

John’s paper describing our Internal-Fat Pointer (IFP) system for memory safety will appear at ASPLOS 2021. To ensure memory safety without the overhead of managing per-pointer metadata, we can use the “pointer tag” — the high unused bits in 64-bit addresses. However, the number of bits in the tag is limited, so to make better use of them, IFP proposes 3 different tag encoding schemes that are optimized for heap, stack and global objects, thus enabling more precise checking without increasing pointer size, and with minimal overhead. The IFP prototype runs on an Risc-V FPGA with Linux. You can read the extended abstract here. Stay tuned for the full version coming soon!