Professor Cui, Heming

PhD Columbia
Associate Professor

Tel: (+852) 2859 2173
Fax: (+852) 2559 8447
Email: heming [AT] cs [DOT] hku [DOT] hk

Dr. Cui received his bachelor and master degrees from Tsinghua University, and he joined HKU in January 2015 right after he received his PhD degree from Columbia University; all his degrees are Computer Science. Dr. Cui is interested in building software infrastructures and tools to greatly improve the reliability, security and performance of real-world software. His PhD students' recent research has led to a series of open source projects and publications in international top conferences and journals of broad areas, including SOSP, NSDI, MICRO, ASPLOS, ATC, ICSE, EuroSys, TPDS, and TDSC. In recent three years, Dr. Cui serves at least once in the program committees of international top conferences on systems/networking/software, including OSDI, SIGCOMM, ASPLOS, NSDI, ATC, EuroSys, and DSN. Dr. Cui also serves as active reviewers for international top journals on systems/networking/software/security, including TPDS, TOCS, TSE, TON, TMC, and TDSC. He serves as the program chair of ACM ChinaSys 2023. Dr. Cui has won several worldwide competitive research awards or grants, including a Croucher Innovation Award in 2016 (HK $5 million), a best paper award from ACSAC '17, the Best Collaborating Scientist Medal from the Huawei Theory Lab in 2021, and the RGC Research Impact Fund (RIF) in 2023 (HK $4 million).

Dr. Cui's recent research papers have led to commercial software releases with global leading IT industries. For instance, Dr Cui's [Fold3D TPDS 2023] paper has been commercialized as the key component of an industry-grade open source big AI model training system (see the Fold3D description in AscendSpeed), which connects PyTorch and Huawei's Ascend NPU. Another instance is that, Dr. Cui's secure system papers (e.g., [Uranus AsiaCCS 2020] and [DAENet TDSC 2021]) on Trusted Execution Environments have become a core component of Huawei's Trusted and Intelligent Cloud Services (see the UTEE component in TICS). Due to this industrial impact case, Dr. Cui received the HKU Faculty Knowledge Exchange (KE) Award in 2022. In addition, Dr. Cui is actively collaborating with industries to jointly publish research papers and to transfer the resultant systems from these papers into commercial software of broad areas, including distributed AI training systems, permissioned blockchain systems, security and privacy preserving systems, and geo distributed transaction systems.

Outstanding students who are interested in becoming Dr. Cui's PhD students can browse his academic talks here.

Research Interests

Operating systems and distributed systems, including distributed big-data and parallel computing systems, distributed AI training/serving systems, blockchains, cloud computing systems, and distributed robotic learning/operating systems.

Selected Publications ("*" means corresponding author)

  • Ji Qi, Xusheng Chen, Yunpeng Jiang, Jianyu Jiang, Tianxiang Shen, Shixiong Zhao, Sen Wang, Gong Zhang, Li Chen, Man Ho Au, and Heming Cui*, BIDL: A High-throughput, Low-latency Permissioned Blockchain Framework for Datacenter Networks, Proceedings of the 28th ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles (SOSP '21). ACM results reproduced badge.
  • Haoze Song, Wenchao Zhou, Feifei Li, Xiang Peng, Heming Cui, Rethink Query Optimization in HTAP Databases, ACM SIGMOD 2024.
  • Mingyuan Wu, Kunqiu Chen, Qi Luo, Jiahong Xiang, Ji Qi, Junjie Chen, Heming Cui, Yuqun Zhang, Enhancing Coverage-Guided Fuzzing via Phantom Program, ACM FSE 2023.
  • Mingyuan Wu, Yicheng Ouyang, Minghai Lu, Junjie Chen, Yingquan Zhao, Heming Cui, Guowei Yang, Yuqun Zhang, SJFuzz: Seed and Mutator Scheduling for JVM Fuzzing, ACM FSE 2023.
  • Fanxin Li, Shixiong Zhao*, Yuhao Qing, Xusheng Chen, Xiuxian Guan, Sen Wang, Gong Zhang, and Heming Cui, Fold3D: Rethinking and Parallelizing Computational and Communicational Tasks in the Training of Large DNN Models, IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems 2021 (TPDS '23).
  • Mingyuan Wu, Minghai Lu, Heming Cui, Yanwei Huang, Junjie Chen, Yuqun Zhang, and Lingming Zhang, JITfuzz: Coverage-guided Fuzzing for JVM Just-in-Time Compilers, Proceedings of the International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE '23).
  • Jianyu Jiang, Qi Ji, Tianxiang Shen, Xusheng Chen, Shixiong Zhao, Sen Wang, Li Chen, Gong Zhang, Xiapu Luo, and Heming Cui*, CRONUS: Fault-isolated, Secure and High-performance Heterogeneous Computing for Trusted Execution Environments, Proceedings of the 55th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Microarchitecture (MICRO '22). ACM results reproduced badge.
  • Xiuxian Guan, Zekai Sun, Shengliang Deng, Xusheng Chen, Shixiong Zhao*, Zongyuan Zhang, Tianyang Duan, Yuexian Wang, Chenshu Wu, Yong Cui, Libo Zhang, Yanjun Wu, Rui Wang, and Heming Cui, ROG: A High Performance and Robust Distributed Training System for Robotic IoT, Proceedings of the 55th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Microarchitecture (MICRO '22). ACM results reproduced badge.
  • Haoran Qiu, Tao Ji, Shixiong Zhao*, Xusheng Chen*, Ji Qi, Heming Cui, and Sen Wang, A Geography-Based P2P Overlay Network for Fast and Robust Blockchain Systems, IEEE Transactions on Services Computing 2022 (TSC '22).
  • Tianxiang Shen, Ji Qi, Jianyu Jiang*, Xian Wang, Siyuan Wen, Xusheng Chen, Shixiong Zhao, Sen Wang, Li Chen, Xiapu Luo, Fengwei Zhang, and Heming Cui, SOTER: Guarding Black-box Inference for General Neural Networks at the Edge, Proceedings of the 2022 USENIX Annual Technical Conference (ATC '22). USENIX results reproduced badge.
  • Shixiong Zhao, Fanxin Li, Xusheng Chen, Tianxiang Shen, Li Chen, Sen Wang, Gong Zhang, Cheng Li, and Heming Cui*, NASPipe: High Performance and Reproducible Pipeline Parallel Supernet Training via Causal Synchronous Parallel, the 2022 Conference on Architectural Support for Programming Languages and Operating Systems (ASPLOS '22). ACM results reproduced badge.
  • Shixiong Zhao, Fanxin Li, Xusheng Chen, Xiuxian Guan, Jianyu Jiang, Dong Huang, Yuhao Qing, Sen Wang, Peng Wang, Gong Zhang, Cheng Li, Ping Luo, and Heming Cui*, vPipe: A Virtualized Acceleration System for Achieving Efficient and Scalable Pipeline Parallel DNN Training, IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems 2021 (TPDS '21).
  • Shengliang Deng, Xiuxian Guan, Zekai Sun, Shixiong Zhao, Tianxiang Shen, Xusheng Chen, Tianyang Duan, Yuexuan Wang, Jia Pan, Yanjun Wu, Libo Zhang, and Heming Cui*, COORP: Satisfying Low-Latency and High-Throughput Requirements of Wireless Network for Coordinated Robotic Learning, IEEE Internet of Things Journal 2022 (IoT-J '22).
  • Mingyuan Wu, Jing Liang, Jiahong Xiang, Yuqun Zhang, Guowei Yang, Huixin Ma, Sen Nie, Shi Wu, Heming Cui, and Lingming Zhang, Evaluating and Improving Neural Program-Smoothing-based Fuzzing, Proceedings of the 44th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE '22).
  • Mingyuan Wu, Ling Jiang, Jiahong Xiang, Yanwei Huang, Heming Cui, Lingming Zhang, and Yuqun Zhang, One Fuzzing Strategy to Rule Them All, Proceedings of the 44th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE '22).
  • Xusheng Chen, Haoze Song, Jianyu Jiang, Chaoyi Ruan, Cheng Li, Sen Wang, Gong Zhang, Reynold Cheng, and Heming Cui*, Achieving Low Tail-latency and High Scalability for Serializable Transactions in Edge Computing, Proceedings of the European Conference on Computer Systems 2021 (EuroSys '21). ACM results reproduced badge.
  • Xusheng Chen, Shixiong Zhao, Ji Qi, Jianyu Jiang, Haoze Song, Cheng Wang, Tsz On Li, Hubert Chan, Fengwei Zhang, Xiapu Luo, Sen Wang, Gong Zhang, and Heming Cui*, Efficient and DoS-resistant Consensus for Permissioned Blockchains, Proceedings of the 39th International Symposium on Computer Performance, Modeling, Measurements and Evaluation 2021 (Performance '21).
  • Saeid Mofrad, Ishtiaq Ahmed, Fengwei Zhang, Shiyong Lu, Ping Yang, and Heming Cui, Securing Big Data Scientific Workflows via Trusted Heterogeneous Environments, IEEE Transactions on Dependable and Secure Computing 2022 (TDSC '22).
  • Tianxiang Shen, Jianyu Jiang, Yunpeng Jiang, Xusheng Chen, Ji Qi, Shixiong Zhao, Fengwei Zhang*, Xiapu Luo, and Heming Cui*, DAENet: Making Strong Anonymity Scale in a Fully Decentralized Network, IEEE Transactions on Dependable and Secure Computing 2021 (TDSC '21).
  • Weiwei Jia, Jianchen Shan, Tsz On Li, Xiaowei Shang, Heming Cui, and Xiaoning Ding, vSMT-IO: Improving I/O Performance and Efficiency on SMT Processors in Virtualized Clouds, Proceedings of the 2020 USENIX Annual Technical Conference (ATC '20).
  • Shixiong Zhao, Xusheng Chen, Cheng Wang, Fanxin Li, Ji Qi, Heming Cui*, Cheng Li, and Sen Wang, HAMS: High Availability for Distributed Machine Learning Service Graphs, Proceedings of the 50th IEEE/IFIP International Conference on Dependable Systems and Networks (DSN '20).
  • Tsz On Li, Jianyu Jiang, Ji Qi, Chi Chiu So, Jiacheng Ma, Xusheng Chen, Tianxiang Shen, Heming Cui*, Yuexuan Wang, and Peng Wang, UPA: An Automated, Accurate and Efficient Differentially Private Big-data Mining System, Proceedings of the 50th IEEE/IFIP International Conference on Dependable Systems and Networks (DSN '20).
  • Jianyu Jiang, Xusheng Chen, Tzs On Li, Cheng Wang, Tianxiang Shen, Shixiong Zhao, Heming Cui*, Cho-Li Wang, and Fengwei Zhang, Uranus: Simple, Efficient SGX Programming and Its Applications, Proceedings of the 15th ACM ASIA Conference on Computer and Communications Security (ASIACCS '20).
  • Jiewen Hai, Cheng Wang, Xusheng Chen, Tsz On LI, Heming Cui*, Sen Wang, Fulva: Efficient Live Migration for In-memory Key-Value Stores with Zero Downtime, Proceedings of the 38th IEEE International Symposium on Reliable Distributed Systems 2019 (SRDS '19).
  • Saeid Mofrad, Ishtiaq Ahmed, Shiyong Lu, Ping Yang, Heming Cui, Fengwei Zhang, SecDATAVIEW: A Secure Big Data Workflow Management System for Heterogeneous Computing Environments, Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Computer Security Applications Conference 2019 (ACSAC '19).
  • Jingpu Duan, Xiaodong Yi, Shixiong Zhao, Chuan Wu, Heming Cui, Franck Le, NFVactor: A Resilient NFV System using the Distributed Actor Model, IEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications 2019 (JSAC '19).
  • Cheng Wang, Xusheng Chen, Weiwei Jia, Boxuan Li, Haoran Qiu, Shixiong Zhao, Heming Cui*, PLOVER: Fast, Multi-core Scalable Virtual Machine Fault-tolerance, Proceedings of the 15th USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation 2018 (NSDI '18).
  • Weiwei Jia, Cheng Wang, Xusheng Chen, Jianchen Shan, Xiaowei Shang, Heming Cui*, Xiaoning Ding, Luwei Cheng, F.C.M. Lau, Yuexuan Wang, Yuangang Wang, Effectively Mitigating I/O Inactivity in vCPU Scheduling, Proceedings of the 2018 USENIX Annual Technical Conference (ATC '18).
  • Feng Liang, F.C.M. Lau, Heming Cui, C.L. Wang, Confluence: Speeding Up Iterative Distributed Operations by Key-dependency-aware Partitioning, IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems 2018 (TPDS '18).
  • Shixiong Zhao, Rui Gu, Haoran Qiu, Tsz On Li, Yuexuan Wang, Heming Cui*, Junfeng Yang, OWL: Understanding and Detecting Concurrency Attacks, Proceedings of the 48th IEEE/IFIP International Conference on Dependable Systems and Networks 2018 (DSN '18).
  • Yongqin Fu, Yuexuan Wang, Zhaoquan Gu, Xiaolin Zheng, Tianhao Wei, Zhen Cao, Heming Cui, F.C.M. Lau, How Local Information Improves Rendezvous in Cognitive Radio Networks, Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Sensing, Communication and Networking 2018 (SECON '18).
  • Jianyu Jiang, Shixiong Zhao, Danish Alsayed, Yuexuan Wang, Heming Cui*, Feng Liang, Zhaoquan Gu, Kakute: A Precise, Unified Information Flow Analysis System for Big-data Security, Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Computer Security Applications Conference 2017 (ACSAC '17). Best paper award.
  • Cheng Wang, Jianyu Jiang, Xusheng Chen, Ning Yi, Heming Cui*, APUS: Fast and Scalable PAXOS on RDMA, Proceedings of the ACM Symposium on Cloud Computing 2017 (SOCC '17).
  • Heming Cui, Rui Gu, Cheng Liu, Tianyu Chen, Junfeng Yang, Paxos Made Transparent, Proceedings of the 25th ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles 2015 (SOSP '15).
  • Junfeng Yang, Heming Cui, Jingyue Wu, Yang Tang, Gang Hu, Determinism Is Not Enough: Making Parallel Programs Reliable with Stable Multithreading, Communications of the ACM 2014 (CACM '14).
  • Heming Cui, Jiri Simsa, Yi-Hong Lin, Hao Li, Ben Blum, Xinan Xu, Junfeng Yang, Garth Gibson, Randal E. Bryant, Parrot: a Practical Runtime for Deterministic, Stable, and Reliable Threads, Proceedings of the 24th ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles 2013 (SOSP '13).
  • Heming Cui, Gang Hu, Jingyue Wu, Junfeng Yang, Verifying Systems Rules Using Rule-Directed Symbolic Execution, Eighteenth International Conference on Architecture Support for Programming Languages and Operating Systems 2013 (ASPLOS '13).
  • Jingyue Wu, Yang Tang, Gang Hu, Heming Cui, Junfeng Yang, Sound and Precise Analysis of Parallel Programs through Schedule Specialization, Proceedings of the 33rd ACM SIGPLAN Conference on Programming Language Design and Implementation 2012 (PLDI '12).
  • Heming Cui, Jingyue Wu, John Gallagher, Huayang Guo, Junfeng Yang, Efficient Deterministic Multithreading through Schedule Relaxation, Proceedings of 23rd ACM Symposium on Operating Systems Principles 2011 (SOSP '11).
  • Heming Cui, Jingyue Wu, Chia-che Tsai, Junfeng Yang, Stable Deterministic Multithreading through Schedule Memoization, Proceedings of the Ninth Symposium on Operating Systems Design and Implementation 2010 (OSDI '10).
  • Jingyue Wu, Heming Cui, Junfeng Yang, Bypassing Races in Live Applications with Execution Filters, Proceedings of the Ninth Symposium on Operating Systems Design and Implementation 2010 (OSDI '10).

Recent Research Grants

  • PI, "Micro-kernel Inspired Systems and Algorithms (MISA): Enabling Secure, Reliable and High-performance Micro-services on Public Clouds", Hong Kong RGC GRF (Ref: HKU 17208223), 2024 - 2027.
  • PC, "MindPipe: High-performance and Carbon-efficient Four-dimensional Parallel Training System for Large AI Models", RGC Research Impact Fund (Ref: R7030-22), 2023 - 2026.
  • PI, "Architecture, Theory, and Algorithm Research for Accelerating Database Based on Accelerators", Huawei Theory Lab Flagship, 2023 - 2025.
  • PI, "FINO: Achieving High-performance and Reliable Transaction/Analytical Processing for Enabling Financial Big-data Analytics in Edge Computing", HKU-SCF R&D Funding Scheme 2022, 2022 - 2024.
  • PI, "UTEE: A Secure, Efficient, and Portable Distributed Bigdata Computing System on Heterogeneous Trusted Execution Devices", ITF ITSP Platform (Ref: GHP/169/20SZ), 2022 - 2024.
  • PI, "New Systems and Algorithms for Realizing Efficient, Scalable, and General Permissioned Blockchains", HKU-SCF R&D Funding Scheme 2021, 2021 - 2023.
  • PI, "ParaNAS: High-performance, Scalable, Reliable and High-precision Multi-GPU Pipeline Parallel DNN Training Systems", Huawei Theory Lab Flagship, 2021 - 2023.
  • PI, "A Blockchain-powered, Trustworthy Internet Layer (System) and its Decentralized and Efficient Applications", Huawei Innovation Research Program (HIRP) Flagship, 2018 - 2020. Finished, the deliverables received an outstanding (highest) score from Huawei.
  • PI, "New Systems and Algorithms for Preserving Big-data Privacy in Clouds", Hong Kong RGC GRF (Ref: HKU 17202318), 2019 - 2022.
  • PI, "Achieving Strong Fault-tolerance for General Storage Applications via Fast, RDMA-powered PAXOS", Huawei Innovation Research Program (HIRP) Open, 2017 - 2018. Finished, the deliverables received an outstanding (highest) score from Huawei.
  • PI, "GAIA: Strengthening the Reliability of Datacenter Computing via Fast Distributed Consensus", Hong Kong RGC GRF (Ref: HKU 17207117), 2018 - 2021.
  • PI, "FALCON: Modeling, Detecting, and Defending against Concurrency Attacks", Hong Kong RGC ECS (Ref: HKU 27200916), 2017 - 2020.
  • PI, "RepBox: Transparent State Machine Replication and its Applications", Croucher Innovation Award, 2016 - 2021.

Department of Computer Science
Rm 301 Chow Yei Ching Building
The University of Hong Kong
Pokfulam Road, Hong Kong

Copyright © Department of Computer Science, Faculty of Engineering, The University of Hong Kong. All rights reserved.

Privacy Policy
Don't have an account yet? Register Now!

Sign in to your account