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Design-for-Debug Architecture for Distributed Embedded Logic Analysis

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3 Author(s)
Ko, H.F. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., McMaster Univ., Hamilton, ON, Canada ; Kinsman, A.B. ; Nicolici, N.

In multi-core designs, distributed embedded logic analyzers with multiple trigger units and trace buffers with real-time offload capability through high-speed trace ports can be placed on-chip. This brings new challenges on how to connect the debug units together in such way that the limited storage space in the trace buffers can be used efficiently. This problem is further aggravated when shadow registers are used to capture data for some signals in the design. In this paper, we propose a new architecture that can dynamically allocate the trace buffers at runtime based on the needs for debug data acquisition coming from multiple data sources and user-programmable priorities. Experimental results show that using the proposed architecture, real-time observability can be improved using only a small amount of on-chip logic hardware, while avoiding excessive storage on-chip.

Published in:

Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:19 ,  Issue: 8 )

Date of Publication:

Aug. 2011

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