Talk: 9:00–10:00 (English)

RustBelt: Securing the Foundations of the Rust Programming Language

The Rust systems programming language promises to overcome the seemingly fundamental tradeoff in language design between high-level safety guarantees and low-level control over resource management. Unfortunately, none of Rust’s safety claims have been formally proven, and there is good reason to question whether they actually hold. Specifically, Rust employs a strong, ownership-based type system, but then extends the expressive power of this core type system through libraries that internally use unsafe features.

In this talk, I will present RustBelt, the first formal (and machine-checked) safety proof for a language representing a realistic subset of Rust. Our proof is extensible in the sense that, for each new Rust library that uses unsafe features, we can say what verification condition it must satisfy in order for it to be deemed a safe extension to the language.

We have carried out this verification for some of the most important libraries that are used throughout the Rust ecosystem. The secret weapon that makes RustBelt possible is the Iris framework for higher-order concurrent separation logic in Coq.

The talk will not assume any prior familiarity with concurrent separation logic or Rust.

Derek Dreyer

Derek Dreyer is a professor of computer science at the Max Planck Institute for Software Systems (MPI-SWS) in Saarbruecken, Germany, and recipient of the 2017 ACM SIGPLAN Robin Milner Young Researcher Award. His research explores connections between type systems for high-level languages and separation logics for low-level systems programming. Most recently, he and his collaborators have led the development of RustBelt, the first formal foundation for the Rust programming language, and Iris, a unifying framework for higher-order separation logic implemented in Coq. He also spends an inappropriate amount of time researching Scotch whisky.