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Generalized multiway branch unit for VLIW microprocessors

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2 Author(s)
Soo-Mook Moon ; Dept. of Electron. Eng., Seoul Nat. Univ., South Korea ; S. D. Carson

VLIW processors use multiway branch instructions to achieve high-speed, parallel evaluation of control structures. This paper introduces a new multiway branch mechanism that allows constant-time branch-target resolution based on an arbitrary condition tree. The unique feature of this mechanism is its target selection unit, which yields a branch-target based on a set of condition bit values and a condition tree description. A representation of condition trees that results in a compact target selection unit is described, and the logic diagram of a target selection unit that provides a four-way branching is shown. Our experimental results on nontrivial integer benchmarks indicate that the proposed multiway branch unit can improve the performance of VLIW machines substantially (i.e., as much as a geometric mean of 35%), compared to using the conventional two-way branching

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems  (Volume:6 ,  Issue: 8 )