doi: 10.17586/2226-1494-2017-17-2-301-311


A. E. Platunov, A. S. Sterkhov

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Article in Russian

For citation: Platunov A.E., Sterkhov A.S. Whatchdog mechanisms in embedded systems. Scientific and Technical Journal of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics, 2017, vol. 17, no. 2, pp. 301–311 (in Russian). doi: 10.17586/2226-1494-2017-17-2-301-311


The paper provides an overview of the watchdog mechanisms which are a category of technical solutions aimed at reliability improvement of embedded computing systems. The works presented in the foreign literature are mainly devoted to partial problems of watchdog mechanisms creation and application. The Russian-language sources are free of information, systematizing understanding of these mechanisms. Engineers’ lack of awareness in matters relating to these elements, important and difficult for integration into system, leads to their inefficient and even unskilled usage. This, in turn, can reduce reliability. The paper deals with a basic model that reflects operation principle of the watchdog mechanism. The analysis of technical solutions presented in literature and used for error detection was carried out. Their classification was proposed. The compact table form shows the main properties of these solutions. Review of solutions improving the efficiency of watchdog mechanisms was made. Today the most important problem is the lack of process automation tools which would give the possibility to integrate the watchdog mechanism effectively and correctly in projected hardware-software system in view of specified criteria (error detection time and response time). These questions are discussed in the final sections of this paper in form of setting targets for future research. The paper is addressed to researchers and developers concerned with embedded systems design and improvement of their operational reliability.

Keywords: watchdog mechanisms, embedded system reliability, watchdog timers, watchdog processors, embedded systems

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