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Accurate Modeling of the Delay and Energy Overhead of Dynamic Voltage and Frequency Scaling in Modern Microprocessors

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7 Author(s)
Sangyoung Park ; Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea ; Jaehyun Park ; Donghwa Shin ; Yanzhi Wang
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Dynamic voltage and frequency scaling (DVFS) has been studied for well over a decade. Nevertheless, existing DVFS transition overhead models suffer from significant inaccuracies; for example, by incorrectly accounting for the effect of DC-DC converters, frequency synthesizers, voltage, and frequency change policies on energy losses incurred during mode transitions. Incorrect and/or inaccurate DVFS transition overhead models prevent one from determining the precise break-even time and thus forfeit some of the energy saving that is ideally achievable. This paper introduces accurate DVFS transition overhead models for both energy consumption and delay. In particular, we redefine the DVFS transition overhead including the underclocking-related losses in a DVFS-enabled microprocessor, additional inductor IR losses, and power losses due to discontinuous-mode DC-DC conversion. We report the transition overheads for a desktop, a mobile and a low-power representative processor. We also present DVFS transition overhead macromodel for use by high-level DVFS schedulers.

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IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits and Systems  (Volume:32 ,  Issue: 5 )