265 research outputs found

    Modeling DVFS and Power-Gating Actuators for Cycle-Accurate NoC-Based Simulators

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    Networks-on-chip (NoCs) are a widely recognized viable interconnection paradigm to support the multi-core revolution. One of the major design issues of multicore architectures is still the power, which can no longer be considered mainly due to the cores, since the NoC contribution to the overall energy budget is relevant. To face both static and dynamic power while balancing NoC performance, different actuators have been exploited in literature, mainly dynamic voltage frequency scaling (DVFS) and power gating. Typically, simulation-based tools are employed to explore the huge design space by adopting simplified models of the components. As a consequence, the majority of state-of-the-art on NoC power-performance optimization do not accurately consider timing and power overheads of actuators, or (even worse) do not consider them at all, with the risk of overestimating the benefits of the proposed methodologies. This article presents a simulation framework for power-performance analysis of multicore architectures with specific focus on the NoC. It integrates accurate power gating and DVFS models encompassing also their timing and power overheads. The value added of our proposal is manyfold: (i) DVFS and power gating actuators are modeled starting from SPICE-level simulations; (ii) such models have been integrated in the simulation environment; (iii) policy analysis support is plugged into the framework to enable assessment of different policies; (iv) a flexible GALS (globally asynchronous locally synchronous) support is provided, covering both handshake and FIFO re-synchronization schemas. To demonstrate both the flexibility and extensibility of our proposal, two simple policies exploiting the modeled actuators are discussed in the article

    A sensor-less NBTI mitigation methodology for NoC architectures

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    CMOS technology improvement allows to increase the number of cores integrated on a single chip and makes Network-on-Chips (NoCs) a key component from the performance and reliability standpoints. Unfortunately, continuous scaling of CMOS technology poses severe concerns regarding failure mechanisms such as NBTI and stressmigration, that are crucial in achieving acceptable component lifetime. Process variation complicates the scenario, decreasing device lifetime and performance predictability during chip fabrication. This paper presents a novel sensor-less methodology to reduce the NBTI degradation in the on-chip network virtual channel buffers, considering process variation effects as well. Experimental validation is obtained using a cycle accurate simulator considering both real and synthetic traffic patterns. We compare our methodology to the best sensor-wise approach used as reference golden model. The proposed sensor-less strategy achieves results within 25% to the optimal sensor-wise methodology while this gap is reduced around 10% decreasing the number of virtual channels per input port. Moreover, our proposal can mitigate NBTI impact both in short and long run, since we recover both the most degraded VC (short run) as well as all the other VCs (long term)

    A Low Energy FPGA Platform for Real-Time Event-Based Control

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    We present a wireless sensor node suitable for event-based real-time control networks. The node achieves low-power operation thanks to tight clock synchronisation with the network master (at present we refer to a star network but extensions are envisaged). Also, the node does not employ any programmable device but rather an FPGA, thus being inherently immune to attacks based on code tampering. Experimental results on a simple laboratory apparatus are presented

    Towards Distributed Mobile Computing

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    In the latest years, we observed an exponential growth of the market of the mobile devices. In this scenario, it assumes a particular relevance the rate at which mobile devices are replaced. According to the International Telecommunicaton Union in fact, smart-phone owners replace their device every 20 months, on average. The side effect of this trend is to deal with the disposal of an increasing amount of electronic devices which, in many cases, arestill working. We believe that it is feasible to recover such an unexploited computational power. Through a change of paradigm in fact, it is possible to achieve a two-fold objective: 1) extend the mobile devices lifetime, 2) enable a new opportunity to speed up mobile applications. In this paper we aim at providing a survey of state-of-art solutions aim at going in the direction of a Distributed Mobile Computing paradigm. We put in evidence the challenges to be addressed in order to implement this paradigm and we propose some possible future improvements

    Thermal/performance trade-off in network-on-chip architectures

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    Multi-core architectures are a promising paradigm to exploit the huge integration density reached by high-performance systems. Indeed, integration density and technology scaling are causing undesirable operating temperatures, having net impact on reduced reliability and increased cooling costs. Dynamic Thermal Management (DTM) approaches have been proposed in literature to control temperature profile at run-time, while design-time approaches generally provide floorplan-driven solutions to cope with temperature constraints. Nevertheless, a suitable approach to collect performance, thermal and reliability metrics has not been proposed, yet. This work presents a novel methodology to jointly optimize temperature/performance trade-off in reliable high-performance parallel architectures with security constraints achieved by workload physical isolation on each core. The proposed methodology is based on a linear formal model relating temperature and duty-cycle on one side, and performance and duty-cycle on the other side. Extensive experimental results on real-world use-case scenarios show the goodness of the proposed model, suitable for design-time system-wide optimization to be used in conjunction with DTM technique

    A Temperature and Reliability Oriented Simulation Framework for Multi-core Architectures

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    The increasing complexity of multi-core architectures demands for a comprehensive evaluation of different solutions and alternatives at every stage of the design process, considering different aspects at the same time. Simulation frameworks are attractive tools to fulfil this requirement, due to their flexibility. Nevertheless, state-of-the-art simulation frameworks lack a joint analysis of power, performance, temperature profile and reliability projection at system-level, focusing only on a specific aspect. This paper presents a comprehensive estimation framework that jointly exploits these design metrics at system-level, considering processing cores, interconnect design and storage elements. We describe the framework in details, and provide a set of experiments that highlight its capability and flexibility, focusing on temperature and reliability analysis of multi-core architectures supported by Network-on-Chip interconnect

    A DVFS Cycle Accurate Simulation Framework with Asynchronous NoC Design for Power-Performance Optimizations

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    Network-on-Chip (NoC) is a flexible and scalable solution to interconnect multi-cores, with a strong influence on the performance of the whole chip. On-chip network affects also the overall power consumption, thus requiring accurate early-stage estimation and optimization methodologies. In this scenario, the Dynamic Voltage Frequency Scaling (DVFS) technique have been proposed both for CPUs and NoCs. The promise is to be a flexible and scalable way to jointly optimize power-performance, addressing both static and dynamic power sources. Being simulation a de-facto prime solution to explore novel multi-core architectures, a reliable full system analysis requires to integrate in the toolchain accurate timing and power models for the DVFS block and for the resynchronization logic between different Voltage and Frequency Islands (VFIs). In such a way, a more accurate validation of novel optimization methodologies which exploit such actuator is possible, since both architectural and actuator overheads are considered at the same time. This work proposes a complete cycle accurate framework for multi-core design supporting Global Asynchronous Local Synchronous (GALS) NoC design and DVFS actuators for the NoC. Furthermore, static and dynamic frequency assignment is possible with or without the use of the voltage regulator. The proposed framework sits on accurate analytical timing model and SPICE-based power measures, providing accurate estimates of both timing and power overheads of the power control mechanisms

    Event-Based Control Enters the Real-Time World: Perspectives and Pitfalls

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    In the last years, event-based control techniques have been gaining a steadily increasing importance owing to the advantages they bring, such as reduced network traffic, low actuator wear, reduced energy consumption of the involved devices. Applying the event-based paradigm in the context of real-time control opens up new opportunities, but introduces new challenges as well. In this paper we provide an overview of both opportunities and challenges, outlining the major problems to be tackled and as a consequence future research directions

    A survey on run-time power monitors at the edge

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    Effectively managing energy and power consumption is crucial to the success of the design of any computing system, helping mitigate the efficiency obstacles given by the downsizing of the systems while also being a valuable step towards achieving green and sustainable computing. The quality of energy and power management is strongly affected by the prompt availability of reliable and accurate information regarding the power consumption for the different parts composing the target monitored system. At the same time, effective energy and power management are even more critical within the field of devices at the edge, which exponentially proliferated within the past decade with the digital revolution brought by the Internet of things. This manuscript aims to provide a comprehensive conceptual framework to classify the different approaches to implementing run-time power monitors for edge devices that appeared in literature, leading the reader toward the solutions that best fit their application needs and the requirements and constraints of their target computing platforms. Run-time power monitors at the edge are analyzed according to both the power modeling and monitoring implementation aspects, identifying specific quality metrics for both in order to create a consistent and detailed taxonomy that encompasses the vast existing literature and provides a sound reference to the interested reader

    Software Fault Tolerance in Real-Time Systems: Identifying the Future Research Questions

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    Tolerating hardware faults in modern architectures is becoming a prominent problem due to the miniaturization of the hardware components, their increasing complexity, and the necessity to reduce the costs. Software-Implemented Hardware Fault Tolerance approaches have been developed to improve the system dependability to hardware faults without resorting to custom hardware solutions. However, these come at the expense of making the satisfaction of the timing constraints of the applications/activities harder from a scheduling standpoint. This paper surveys the current state of the art of fault tolerance approaches when used in the context real-time systems, identifying the main challenges and the cross-links between these two topics. We propose a joint scheduling-failure analysis model that highlights the formal interactions among software fault tolerance mechanisms and timing properties. This model allows us to present and discuss many open research questions with the final aim to spur the future research activities
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