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Proceedings 2001 International Conference on Parallel Architectures and Compilation Techniques (2001)
Barcelona, Spain
Sept. 8, 2001 to Sept. 12, 2001
ISBN: 0-7695-1363-8
pp: 0049
Brannon Batson , Compaq Computer Corporation
T. N. Vijaykumar , Purdue University
Abstract: While set-associative caches typically incur fewer misses than direct-mapped caches, set-associative caches have slower hit times. We propose the reactive-associative cache (r-a cache), which provides flexible associativity by placing most blocks in direct-mapped positions and reactively displacing only conflicting blocks to set-associative positions. The r-a cache uses way-prediction (like the predictive associative cache, PSA) to access displaced blocks on the initial probe. Unlike PSA, however, the r-a cache employs a novel feedback mechanism to prevent unpredictable blocks from being displaced. Reactive displacement and feedback allow the r-a cache to use a novel PC-based way-prediction and achieve high accuracy; without impractical block swapping as in column associative and group associative, and without relying on timing-constrained XOR way prediction. A one-port, 4-way r-a cache achieves up to 9% speedup over a direct-mapped cache and performs within 2% of an idealized 2-way set-associative, 1-cycle cache. A 4-way r-a cache achieves up to 13% speedup over a PSA cache, with both r-a and PSA using the PC scheme. CACTI estimates that for sizes larger than 8KB, a 4-way r-a cache is within 1% of direct-mapped hit times, and 24% faster than a 2-way set-associative cache.

B. Batson and T. N. Vijaykumar, "Reactive-Associative Caches," Proceedings 2001 International Conference on Parallel Architectures and Compilation Techniques(PACT), Barcelona, Spain, 2001, pp. 0049.
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