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Dynamic register file resizing and frequency scaling to improve embedded processor performance and energy-delay efficiency

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4 Author(s)
Homayoun, H. ; Center for Embedded Comput. Syst., Univ. of California, Irvine, CA ; Pasricha, S. ; Makhzan, M. ; Veidenbaum, A.

With CMOS scaling leading to ever increasing levels of transistor integration on a chip, designers of high-performance embedded processors have ample area available to increase processor resources in order to improve performance. However, increasing resource sizes can increase power dissipation and also reduce access time, which can limit maximum achievable operating frequency. In this paper, we explore optimizations for the processor register file (RF), to improve performance and reduce the energy-delay product. We show that while increasing the size of the RF can potentially increase the IPC, overall it results in an increase in program execution time. In response we propose L2MRFS - a dynamic register file resizing scheme in tandem with frequency scaling, which exploits L2 cache misses to noticeably improve processor performance (11% on average) and also significantly reduce the energy-delay product (7%).

Published in:

Design Automation Conference, 2008. DAC 2008. 45th ACM/IEEE

Date of Conference:

8-13 June 2008

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