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A hardware-software co-simulator for embedded system design and debugging

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8 Author(s)
Ghosh, A. ; Mitsubishi Electr. Res. Lab. Inc., Sunnyvale, CA, USA ; Bershteyn, M. ; Casley, R. ; Chien, C.
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One of the interesting problems in hardware-software co-design is that of debugging embedded software in conjunction with hardware. Currently, most software designers wait until a working hardware prototype is available before debugging software. Bugs discovered in hardware during the software debugging phase require re-design and re-fabrication, thereby not only delaying the project but also increasing cost. It also puts software debugging on hold until a new hardware prototype is available. In this paper we describe a hardware-software co-simulator that can be used in the design, debugging and verification of embedded systems. This tool contains simulators for different parts of the system and a backplane which is used to integrate the simulators. This enables us to simulate hardware, software and their interaction efficiently. We also address the problem of simulation speed. Currently, the more accurate (in terms of timing) the models used, the longer it takes to simulate a system. Our main contribution is a set of techniques to speed up simulation of processors and peripherals without significant loss in timing accuracy. Finally, we describe applications used to test the co-simulator and our experience in using it

Published in:

Design Automation Conference, 1995. Proceedings of the ASP-DAC '95/CHDL '95/VLSI '95., IFIP International Conference on Hardware Description Languages. IFIP International Conference on Very Large Scal

Date of Conference:

29 Aug-1 Sep 1995