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CMP读书笔记一:CMP的提出

2010年10月17日 发表评论 阅读评论

这段时间,天天上午睡觉,下午去实验室,晚上三国杀,很久没有静下心来看书了,感觉继续这样下去会不行的。于是打算开始看些体系结构领域相关的书籍,为了提高效率,尽量写写读书笔记。

我选的第一本书是《Chip Multiprocessor Architecture:Techniques to Improve Throughput and Latency》。这是一本刚出不久的,关于片上多核处理器(Chip Multiprocessor,CMP)的设计技术的书,由Kunle Olukotun,Lance Hammond,James Laudon合著的,其中前两位作者都是斯坦福TCC(Transactional coherency and consistency)小组的大牛,第三位作者Sun公司的工程师,Sun公司是我最敬佩的技术类公司,没有之一,只是可惜死了。这本书主要关注的是如何提高处理器的吞吐量以及降低延时。里面涉及了很多新的技术(包括一些没有在工业界实现的技术,如线程级预测TLS-Thread Level Speculation、事务内存-TRANSACTIONAL MEMORY),个人觉得对做多核芯片和并行程序设计的人来说还是不错的一本书。

本书的第一章回顾了整个CPU的发展史,从指令集并行(Instruction-Level Parallelism,ILP)引出了线程级并行(Thread-Level Parallelism),从而导出了CMP的话题。

2006年之前,CPU的性能基本上是按着摩尔定律发展的,这得益于两个方面,一个是集成电路的发展,另外是处理器结构的优化,如超标量技术(Superscalar),动态流水线技术(Dynamic Pipeline),乱序执行技术(Out-of-order Execution)。

但是,在2006年左右,摩尔定律出现了一次危机,ILP也几乎走到了尽头,主要原因是:

  • 集成电路已经发展到了极限,再要提高集成度非常困难,尤其是现在28nm的情况下。
  • 功耗问题的突出,为了提高单核心的速度,提高ILP,现在的处理器花了很大一部分面积用于这些技术的调度,如动态流水线的调度,乱序执行的调度,这些面积的功耗已经远远超过了运算器件的功耗。导致处理器的效率(性能功耗比)急剧下降。
  • 设计验证难度的增加,要想在单核情况下提高处理器的性能,需要设计更复杂的超标量乱序执行动态流水线结构,这导致芯片的设计,尤其是验证呈指数增加,很难再一两年内设计出一款商业的芯片。
    于是,学术界和工业界就提出了更粗粒度的并行,线程级并行TLP。于是有了多核处理器的诞生,多核处理器的主要思想就是,一个芯片内集成几个核,每个核可以做的简单点,每个核的性能功耗比就能做的比较好,从而总的性能功耗比也得到了提高。
    之前的单核超标量处理器的并且,主要都是在ILP层面,通过多发射,分支预测技术,只能处理器一些基本的,很小的并行块,无法进行线程级甚至任务级的并行。各种粒度的并行和各种体系结构的关系如下图:

image

接着作者举了个CMP和Uniprocessor的比较的例子,并做了性能,效率的比较分析。

最后,作者指出了本书主要讨论的问题,一个处理器的吞吐量,一个是延时。前者主要针对并行粒度大,并行度高的应用,如互联网应用;后者主要针对一些延时敏感的应用,如各种实时系统以及各种桌面应用。



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