A General Analysis Framework for Soft Real-time Tasks

Zheng Dong, Cong Liu, Soroush Bateni, Zelun Kong, Liang He, Lingming Zhang, Ravi Prakash, Yuqun Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Much recent work has been conducted on supporting soft real-time tasks on multiprocessors due to the multicore revolution. While most earlier works focus on the traditional sporadic task model with deterministic worst-case specification, several recent works investigate the stochastic nature of many workloads seen in practice, specifying task execution times using average-case provisioning instead of the worst case. Unfortunately, all the existing work on supporting soft real-time workloads ignores a simple practical fact that the job inter-arrival time (or task period) is also stochastic for many real-world applications. Adopting a fixed worst-case period to model all the arriving pattern is rather pessimistic and may result in significant capacity loss in practice. Based on these observations, we present a general soft real-time multiprocessor schedulability analysis framework in this paper for practical sporadic task systems specified by stochastic period and execution demand, following probability distributions. Our analysis can be generally applied to global tunable priority-based schedulers, which allow any job's priority to be changed dynamically at runtime within a priority window of constant length. We have extensively evaluated the analysis framework using a MPEG video decoding case study and simulation-based experiments. Experimental results demonstrate significant advantages of our analysis, which yields over 200 and 50 percent improvements compared to existing analysis assuming worst-case task periods in terms of schedulability and magnitude of the derived tardiness bound, respectively.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8565912
Pages (from-to)1222-1237
Number of pages16
JournalIEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • probability distribution
  • Real-time scheduling
  • schedulability test
  • stochastic tasks
  • tardiness bound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Signal Processing
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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