Using Hardware Counters to Automatically Improve Memory Performance

M.M. Tikir, J.K. Hollingsworth
Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE SC2004 Conference  
In this paper, we introduce a profile-driven online page migration scheme and investigate its impact on the performance of multithreaded applications. We use lightweight, inexpensive plug-in hardware counters to profile the memory access behavior of an application, and then migrate pages to memory local to the most frequently accessing processor. Using the Dyninst runtime instrumentation combined with hardware counters, we were able to add page migration capabilities to the system without
more » ... to modify the operating system kernel, or to re-compile application programs. This approach reduced the total number of non-local memory accesses of applications by up to 90%. Even on a system with small remote to local memory access latency rations, this resulted in up to 16% improvement in execution time.
doi:10.1109/sc.2004.64 dblp:conf/sc/TikirH04 fatcat:qr25yxyuwjfpre2p3ozeuqtb3i