NCTUCS 2013-Fall Computer Organizaion by ...

NCTUCS 2013-Fall Computer Organizaion by Professor Kai-Chiang Wu

Ch4 - The Processor


  • CPU performance factor
    • Instrction count: Determined by ISA and compiler
    • CPI and Cycle Time: Determined by CPU hardware
  • Two MIPS example
  • Simple subset, shows most aspects
    • Memory reference: lw, sw
    • Arithmetic/logical: add, sub, and, or, slt
    • Control transfer: beq, j

Instruction Execution

  • PC, instruction memory, fetch instruction
  • Register numbers, register file, read registers
  • Depending on instruction class

CPU Overview

CPU Overview


You should use MUX to join wires together.


RegWrite, RegRead, MUX, MemRead, MemWrite, Zero, ALU operation, Branch

Logic Design Basic

  • Information encoded in binary
    • Low voltage = 0, High voltage = 1
    • One wire per bit
    • Multi-bit data encoded on multi-wire buses
  • Combinational element
    • Operate on data
    • Output is a function of input
  • State (sequential) elements
    • Store information

Combinational Elements

AND gate, Adder, MUX, ALU

Sequential Elements

  • Register: stores data in circuit
    • Uses a clock signal to determine when to update the stored value
    • Edge-triggered: update when Clk changes from 0 to 1

Performance Issues of Single Cycle Design

  • Longest delay determines clock period
    • critical path: load instruction

Clocking Methodology

  • Combinational logic transforms data during clock cycles
    • Between clock edges
    • Input from state elements, output to state element
    • Longest delay determines clock period
      • clock period

Building a Datapath

Datapath: Elements that process data and addresses in the CPU. ex: Reg, ALU, MUX, Mem

Instruction Fetch

Instruction Fetch

R-Format Instructions

  • Read two register operands
  • Perform arithmetic/logical operation
  • Write register result

Load/Store Instructions

  • Load: Read memory and update register
  • Store: Write register value to memory
  • Read register operands
  • Calculate address using 16-bit offset
    • Use ALU, but sign-extend offset


Situations that prevent starting the next instruction in the next cycle

Structure Hazards

  • Conflict for use of a resource
  • In MIPS pipeline with a single memory
    • Load/store requires data access
    • Instruction fetch would have to stall for that cycle
      • Would cause a pipeline “bubble”
  • Pipelined datapaths require separate instruction/data memories or separate instruction/data caches

Data Hazards

An instruction depends on completion of data access by a previous instruction

  • Forwarding (aka Bypassing)

    • Use result when it is computed
    • Don’t wait for it to be stored in a register
    • Requires extra connections in the datapath
  • Load-Use Data Hazard

    • Can’t always avoid stalls by forwarding
      • If value not computed when needed
      • Can’t forward backward in time!
  • Code Scheduling to Avoid Stalls

    • Reorder code to avoid use of load result in the next instruction

Control Hazards

  • Branch determines flow of control
    • Fetching next instruction depends on branch outcome
    • Pipeline can’t always fetch correct instruction

In MIPS pipeline
Need to compare registers and compute target early in the pipeline
Add hardware to do it in ID stage

  • Stall on Branch
    • Wait until branch outcome determined before fetching next instruction

Branch Prediction

Pipeline Summary

  • Pipelining improves performance by increasing instruction throughput

    • Executes multiple instructions in parallel
    • Each instruction has the same latency
  • Subject to hazards

    • Structure
    • Data
    • Control
  • Instruction set design affects complexity of pipeline implementation

MIPS Pipelined Datapath

From left to right:

  1. IF: Instruction fetch
  2. ID: Instruction decode / register file read
  3. EX: Execute / address calculation
  4. MEM: Memory Access
  5. WB: Write Back

left to right flow leads to hazards

Pipeline Registers

Pipeline Registers

  • Need registers between stages to hold information produced in previous cycle.
  • IF and ID are in different instruction cycle, so we need registers.
  • If some results in this stage won't be used in the next stages, we don't need store those results in the pipeline registers.

Pipeline Operation

Cycle-by-cycle flow of instructions through the pipelined datapath

  • “Single-clock-cycle” pipeline diagram

    • Shows pipeline usage in a single cycle
    • Highlight resources used
  • “multi-clock-cycle” pipeline diagram

    • Graph of operation over time

Corrected Datapath for Load

write address should be stored in the pipeline registers.
Corrected Datapath for Load

Forwarding Paths

  • Forwarding Unit
  • Control Unit

Forwarding Conditions

// EX hazard  
if (EX/MEM.RegWrite && (EX/MEM.RegisterRd != 0))  
    if (EX/MEM.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRs) ForwardA = 10;  
    if (EX/MEM.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRt) ForwardB = 10;  

// MEM hazard  
if (MEM/WB.RegWrite && (MEM/WB.RegisterRd != 0))  
    if (MEM/WB.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRs) ForwardA = 01;  
    if (MEM/WB.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRt) ForwardB = 01;  

Double Data Hazard

add $1,$1,$2  
add $1,$1,$3  
add $1,$1,$4  
  • Both hazards occur -> Want to use the most recent
  • Revise MEM hazard condition -> Only fwd if EX hazard condition isn’t true

Revised Forwarding Condition

// MEM hazard  
if (MEM/WB.RegWrite && (MEM/WB.RegisterRd != 0))  
    if ( !(EX/MEM.RegWrite && (EX/MEM.RegisterRd != 0)  
    && (EX/MEM.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRs)) )  
        if (MEM/WB.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRs) ForwardA = 01;  

    if ( !(EX/MEM.RegWrite && (EX/MEM.RegisterRd != 0)  
    && (EX/MEM.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRt)) )  
        if (MEM/WB.RegisterRd = ID/EX.RegisterRt) ForwardB = 01;  

Load-Use Hazard Detection

# Load-use hazard happens when  
ID/EX.MemRead and  
((ID/EX.RegisterRt = IF/ID.RegisterRs) or (ID/EX.RegisterRt = IF/ID.RegisterRt))  
  • Check when using instruction is decoded in ID stage
  • If detected, stall and insert bubble
  • 對一個 load word 的指令來說,我們要看的是他的 Rt

How to Stall the Pipeline

  • Force control values in ID/EX register to 0
    • EX, MEM and WB do nop (no-operation)
  • Prevent update of PC and IF/ID register
    • Using instruction is decoded again
    • Following instruction is fetched again
    • 1-cycle stall allows MEM to read data for lw

Stalls and Performance

  • Stalls reduce performance
    • But are required to get correct results
  • Compiler can arrange code to avoid hazards and stalls
    • Requires knowledge of the pipeline structure

Reducing Branch Delay

  • Move hardware to determine outcome to ID stage
    • Target address adder
    • Register comparator
  • Example: Branch taken

把 branch 決定的時間從 stage4 提早到 stage2,
在 stage2 才會知道這個 branch 是否會被 taken
決定的時間越早越好, 最早就是在 stage2 決定

Data Hazards For Branches

If a comparison register is a destination of
+ 2nd or 3rd preceding ALU instruction
+ Can resolve using forwarding
+ preceding ALU instruction or 2nd preceding load instruction
+ Need 1 stall cycle
+ immediately preceding load instruction
+ Need 2 stall cycles

Dynamic Branch Prediction


  • Intel Sandy Bridge 的 pipeline 約有 17 個 stage
  • Intel Sandy Bridge 和 Ivy Bridge 是以色列的研發團隊研發的
  • Haswell 是美國團隊研發的



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