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Method and mechanism for implementation-independent, on-line, end-to-end detection of faults in self-checking queues in digital hardware systems

Image Number 3 for United States Patent #8024632.

A method and apparatus are provided for detecting faults in a queue (also known as FIFO) in a digital system. The method augments the FIFO with an external monitoring mechanism which, on demand, checks the FIFO's operation and alerts the system to malfunctioning of the FIFO's control mechanism or corruption of data contained therein. The detection apparatus does not depend on the implementation of the FIFO; the checking is based solely on observing the data entering and exiting the FIFO. Furthermore, the apparatus works in a non-intrusive manner during a normal operation of the FIFO as part of the system. The method and apparatus allow for many variants, all derived from the same general scheme, and which allow different levels of protection against faults.

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