Mutex-based de-anonymization of an anonymous read/write memory

Emmanuel Godard, Damien Imbs, Michel Raynal, Gadi Taubenfeld

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


Anonymous shared memory is a memory in which processes use different names for the same shared read/write register. As an example, a shared register named A by a process p and a shared register named B by another process q can correspond to the very same register X, and similarly for the names B at p and A at q which can correspond to the same register Y ≠ X. Hence, there is a permanent disagreement on the register names among the processes. This new notion of anonymity was recently introduced by G. Taubenfeld (PODC 2017), who presented several memory-anonymous algorithms and impossibility results. This paper introduces a new problem, that consists in “de-anonymizing” an anonymous shared memory. To this end, it presents an algorithm that, starting with a shared memory made up of m anonymous read/write atomic registers (i.e., there is no a priori agreement on their names), allows each process to compute a local addressing mapping, such that all the processes agree on the names of each register. The proposed construction is based on an underlying deadlock-free mutex algorithm for n ≥ 2 processes (recently proposed in a paper co-authored by some of the authors of this paper), and consequently inherits its necessary and sufficient condition on the size m of the anonymous memory, namely m must belong to the set (Formula Presented). This algorithm, which is also symmetric in the sense process identities can only be compared by equality, requires the participation of all the processes; hence it can be part of the system initialization. Last but not least, the proposed algorithm has a noteworthy first-class property, namely, its simplicity.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNetworked Systems - 7th International Conference, NETYS 2019, Revised Selected Papers
EditorsMohamed Faouzi Atig, Alexander A. Schwarzmann
Number of pages16
ISBN (Print)9783030312763
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes
Event7th International Conference on Networked Systems, NETYS 2019 - Marrakech, Morocco
Duration: 19 Jun 201921 Jun 2019

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume11704 LNCS
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


Conference7th International Conference on Networked Systems, NETYS 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019.


  • Anonymity
  • Anonymous shared memory
  • Asynchronous system
  • Atomic read/write register
  • Concurrent algorithm
  • Deadlock-freedom
  • Local memory
  • Mapping function
  • Mutual exclusion
  • Simplicity
  • Synchronization


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