CSOM/PL — A Virtual Machine Product Line

By: Michael Haupt, Stefan Marr, Robert Hirschfeld


CSOM/PL is a software product line (SPL) derived from applying multi-dimensional separation of concerns (MDSOC) techniques to the domain of high-level language virtual machine (VM) implementations. For CSOM/PL, we modularised CSOM, a Smalltalk VM implemented in C, using VMADL (virtual machine architecture description language). Several features of the original CSOM were encapsulated in VMADL modules and composed in various combinations. In an evaluation of our approach, we show that applying MDSOC and SPL principles to a domain as complex as that of VMs is not only feasible but beneficial, as it improves understandability, maintainability, and configurability of VM implementations without harming performance.


Virtual machines, architecture, software product lines, multi-dimensional separation of concerns

Cite as:

Michael Haupt, Stefan Marr, Robert Hirschfeld, “CSOM/PL — A Virtual Machine Product Line”, Journal of Object Technology, Volume 10, (2011), pp. 12:1-30, doi:10.5381/jot.2011.10.1.a12.

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The JOT Journal   |   ISSN 1660-1769   |   DOI 10.5381/jot   |   AITO   |   Open Access   |    Contact