Threshold automata, and the counter systems they define, were introduced as a framework for parameterized model checking of fault-tolerant distributed algorithms. This application domain suggested natural constraints on the automata structure, and a specific form of acceleration, called single-rule acceleration: consecutive occurrences of the same automaton rule are executed as a single transition in the counter system. These accelerated systems have bounded diameter, and can be verified in a complete manner with bounded model checking.

We go beyond the original domain, and investigate extensions of threshold automata: non-linear guards, increments and decrements of shared variables, increments of shared variables within loops, etc., and show that the bounded diameter property holds for several extensions. Finally, we put single-rule acceleration in the scope of flat counter automata: although increments in loops may break the bounded diameter property, the corresponding counter automaton is flattable, and reachability can be verified using more permissive forms of acceleration.