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Code Decompression Unit Design for VLIW Embedded Processors

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3 Author(s)
Yuan Xie ; Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park ; Wayne Wolf ; Haris Lekatsas

Code size "bloating" in embedded very long instruction word (VLIW) processors is a major concern for embedded systems since memory is one of the most restricted resources. In this paper, we describe a code compression algorithm based on arithmetic coding, discuss how to design decompression architecture, and illustrate the tradeoffs between compression ratio and decompression overhead, by using different probability models. Experimental results for a VLIW embedded processor TMS320C6x show that compression ratios between 67% and 80% can be achieved, depending on the probability models used. A precache decompression unit design is implemented in TSMC 0.25 mum and a test chip is fabricated.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Systems  (Volume:15 ,  Issue: 8 )