A light-weight fairness mechanism for chip multiprocessor memory systems

Magnus Jahre, Lasse Natvig
2009 Proceedings of the 6th ACM conference on Computing frontiers - CF '09  
Chip Multiprocessor (CMP) memory systems suffer from the effects of destructive thread interference. This interference reduces performance predictability because it depends heavily on the memory access pattern and intensity of the co-scheduled threads. In this work, we confirm that all shared units must be thread-aware in order to provide memory system fairness. However, the current proposals for fair memory systems are complex as they require an interference measurement mechanism and a
more » ... enforcement policy for all hardware-controlled shared units. Furthermore, they often sacrifice system throughput to reach their fairness goals which is not desirable in all systems. In this work, we show that our novel fairness mechanism, called the Dynamic Miss Handling Architecture (DMHA), is able to reduce implementation complexity by using a single fairness enforcement policy for the complete hardware-managed shared memory system. Specifically, it controls the total miss bandwidth available to each thread by dynamically manipulating the number of Miss Status Holding Registers (MSHRs) available in each private data cache. When fairness is chosen as the metric of interest and we compare to a state-of-the-art fairness-aware memory system, DMHA improves fairness by 26% on average with the single program baseline. With a different configuration, DMHA improves throughput by 13% on average compared to a conventional memory system.
doi:10.1145/1531743.1531747 dblp:conf/cf/JahreN09 fatcat:7gokovt5bfg3jcazorgqnpuqc4