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Improving Microprocessor Performance and Energy-efficiency by Exploiting OS-aware Architecture Design

April 27, 2004

Date: Tuesday April 27, 2004
Time: 11am-12:15pm
Location: Woodward 149


Tao Li <tli3@ece.utexas.edu>
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering University of Texas at Austin

Abstract: The Operating System (OS) which manages both hardware and software resources, constitutes a major component of today's complex systems. Many modern and emerging workloads (e.g., database, web servers and file/e-mail applications) exercise the OS significantly. However, microprocessor designs and (performance/power) optimizations have largely been driven by the user-level applications. In this talk, I will present the advantages and benefits of integrating OS component in processor architecture design. In the first part of my talk, I will show how control flow prediction hardware, which is critically to deliver instruction level parallel (ILP) and pipelining performance on today's highly-speculative and deeply-pipelined machine, can be cost-effectively adapted to significantly improve its speculation accuracy on the exception-driven, intermittent OS execution. In the second part of my talk, I will address the adaptations of processor resources to reduce OS power on today's high-complexity processors, which exploit aggressive hardware design to maximize the performance across a wide range of targeted applications.

Bio:Tao Li is currently a Ph.D. candidate (in Computer Engineering) at the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, University of Texas at Austin. His research interests include: computer and system architecture, operating systems, energy-efficient design, modeling, simulation and evaluation of computer systems and hardware system prototyping.