Precision, recall, and sensitivity of monitoring partially synchronous distributed programs

Duong Nguyen*, Sorrachai Yingchareonthawornchai, Vidhya Tekken Valapil, Sandeep S. Kulkarni, Murat Demirbas

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
20 Downloads (Pure)


Distributed programs are often designed with implicit assumptions about the underlying system. We focus on assumptions related to clock synchronization. When a program written with clock synchronization assumptions is monitored to determine if it satisfies its requirements, the monitor should also account for these assumptions precisely. Otherwise, the monitor will either miss potential bugs (false negatives) or find bugs that are inconsistent with these assumptions (false positives). However, if assumptions made by the program are implicit or change over time and are not immediately available to the monitor, such false positives and/or negatives are unavoidable. This paper characterizes precision (probability that the violation identified by the monitor is valid) and recall (probability that the monitor identifies an actual violation) of the monitor based on the gap between clock synchronization assumptions made by the program/application and the clock synchronization assumptions made by the monitor. Our analysis is based on the development of an analytical model for precision, recall and sensitivity of monitors detecting conjunctive predicates. We validate the model via simulations and experiments on the Amazon Web Services platform.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-348
Number of pages30
Issue number5
Early online date2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Conjunctive Predicate
  • Distributed Monitoring
  • Partially Synchronous Systems
  • Precision and Recall
  • Predicate Detection


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