A Memory Hierarchical Layer Assigning and Prefetching Technique to Overcome the Memory Performance/Energy Bottleneck

Minas Dasygenis, Erik Brockmeyer, Bart Durinck, Francky Catthoor, Dimitrios Soudris, Antonios Thanailakis

The memory subsystem has always been a bottleneck in performance as well as significant power contributor in memory intensive applications. Many researchers have presented multi-layered memory hierarchies as a means to design energy and performance efficient systems. However, most of the previous work do not explore trade-offs systematically. We fill this gap by proposing a formalized technique that takes into consideration data reuse, limited lifetime of the arrays of an application and application specific prefetching opportunities, and performs a thorough trade-off exploration for different memory layer sizes. This technique has been implemented on a prototype tool, which was tested successfully using nine real-life applications of industrial relevance. Following this approach we have able to reduce execution time up to 60%, and energy consumption up to 70%.

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