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Virtual Configuration Management: A Technique for Partial Runtime Reconfiguration
October 2009 (vol. 58 no. 10)
pp. 1398-1410
Mohamed Taher, Ain Shams University, Cairo
Tarek El-Ghazawi, The George Washington University, DC
Reconfigurable Computers (RCs), built from configurable processors can offer high performance in a wide range of applications. However, due to the limited reconfigurable resources, not all needed functionalities can be implemented at the same time, and runtime reconfiguration becomes an appealing solution. This work proposes techniques suitable for multitasking applications as well as applications that can change the course of processing in a nondeterministic fashion. In order to exploit both spatial and temporal locality simultaneously, the proposed model groups hardware functions into configuration blocks of fixed size (pages), variable size (segments), or hybrid (paged segments). Multiple blocks can be configured on a chip simultaneously. Data mining techniques are used to group related functions into blocks (pages or segments) and temporal locality is exploited through block replacement techniques. Simulation, as well as emulation using the Cray XD1 reconfigurable high-performance computer was used in the experimental study. Results show a significant improvement in performance using the proposed techniques.

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Index Terms:
Reconfigurable Computers (RCs), field programable gate arrays (FPGA), partial reconfiguration.
Citation:
Mohamed Taher, Tarek El-Ghazawi, "Virtual Configuration Management: A Technique for Partial Runtime Reconfiguration," IEEE Transactions on Computers, vol. 58, no. 10, pp. 1398-1410, Oct. 2009, doi:10.1109/TC.2009.81
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