Author: Stéphane Nicolet
Date: Thu Sep 23 23:19:06 2021 +0200
Detect search explosions
This patch detects some search explosions (due to double extensions in
search.cpp) which can happen in some pathological positions, and takes
measures to ensure progress in search even for these pathological situations.
While a small number of double extensions can be useful during search
(for example to resolve a tactical sequence), a sustained regime of
double extensions leads to search explosion and a non-finishing search.
See the discussion in https://github.com/official-stockfish/Stockfish/pull/3544
and the issue https://github.com/official-stockfish/Stockfish/issues/3532
The implemented algorithm is the following:
a) at each node during search, store the current depth in the stack.
Double extensions are by definition levels of the stack where the
depth at ply N is strictly higher than depth at ply N-1.
b) during search, calculate for each thread a running average of the
number of double extensions in the last 4096 visited nodes.
c) if one thread has more than 2% of double extensions for a sustained
period of time (6 millions consecutive nodes, or about 4 seconds on
my iMac), we decide that this thread is in an explosion state and
we calm down this thread by preventing it to do any double extension
for the next 6 millions nodes.
To calculate the running averages, we also introduced a auxiliary class
generalizing the computations of ttHitAverage variable we already had in
code. The implementation uses an exponential moving average of period 4096
and resolution 1/1024, and all computations are done with integers for
Example where the patch solves a search explosion:
position fen 8/Pk6/8/1p6/8/P1K5/8/6B1 w - - 37 130
This algorithm does not affect search in normal, non-pathological positions.
We verified, for instance, that the usual bench is unchanged up to depth 20
at least, and that the node numbers are unchanged for a search of the starting
position at depth 32.