fuzzing re2c

My dearest friend maintains re2c (The fast C lexer generator).

Conceptually re2c is a simple tool: it accepts single source file in .re format and generates file in .c format.

It usually works fine but occasionally (mostly in development branches) re2c fails to produce valid output. Extensive test suite is meant to cover past errors and complex lexers seen in the wild but it does not help testing new features and bizarre corner cases.

One day inspired with QuickFuzz I’ve decided to spend 30 minutes to write a fuzzer for re2c.

I’ve started from very simple model: we’ll support only basic set of operations. The full list is:

Haskell community has a wonderful QuickCheck library (paper) to generate random instances of a given datatype. The only thing I need is to put these random instances into the file and run re2c selfvalidation on it. -S (skeleton mode) option generates a validator, not a normal lexer.

-- qc_re2c.hs
{-# LANGUAGE LambdaCase #-}

import qualified Test.QuickCheck as Q
import qualified Test.QuickCheck.Monadic as QM
import qualified System.Random as SR
import qualified System.Process as SP
import qualified System.Exit as SE
import qualified Data.ByteString.Char8 as BS

data E = A
       | B
       | Alt E E
       | Cat E E
       | Star E

instance Show E where
  show = \case
    A       -> "\"a\""
    B       -> "\"b\""
    Alt l r -> "(" ++ show l ++ "|" ++ show r ++ ")"
    Cat l r -> "(" ++ show l ++ show r ++ ")"
    Star e  -> "(" ++ show e ++ ")" ++ "*"

instance Q.Arbitrary E where
    arbitrary = do d <- Q.choose (0,5) :: Q.Gen Int
                   arbitrary_d d

arbitrary_d 0 = Q.oneof [ pure A, pure B ]
arbitrary_d d = Q.frequency [ (10, pure A)
                            , (10, pure B)
                            , (20,  Alt <$> arbitrary_d d' <*> arbitrary_d d')
                            , (20,  Cat <$> arbitrary_d d' <*> arbitrary_d d')
                            , (20, Star <$> arbitrary_d d')
                            ]
    where d' = pred d

foo :: IO [E]
foo = Q.generate Q.arbitrary

prop_test_re2c :: E -> E -> Q.Property
prop_test_re2c r1 r2 = QM.monadicIO $ do
    let re_file = unlines [ "/*!re2c"
                          , show r1 ++ " {}"
                          , show r2 ++ " {}"
                          , "*/"
                          ]
    s1 <- QM.run $ do BS.writeFile "a.re" $ BS.pack re_file
                      SP.system "re2c -Werror-undefined-control-flow -S a.re -o a.c 2>>re2c_last_warning || exit 42 && gcc a.c -o a && ./a"
    QM.assert $ s1 `elem` [SE.ExitSuccess, SE.ExitFailure 42]

main :: IO ()
-- main = Q.quickCheck prop_test_re2c
main = Q.quickCheckWith Q.stdArgs { Q.maxSuccess = 10000 } prop_test_re2c

Running the thing is easy:

$ runhaskell qc_re2c.hs

It generates samples similar to the following:

/*!re2c
(((("b")*)*|(("b")*)*))* {}
"b" {}
*/

We can extend fuzzer to support things like “[^abc]” (set negation), add more regex clauses and so on.

Found issues so far:

Now computer can write (and trim) code samples for you.

Simple!

Posted on December 2, 2016
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