Efficient techniques to provide scalability for token-based cache coherence protocols
|Research Area:||Routing Algorithms|
|Proposed start date:||2005-09-10||Proposed end date:||2009-06-24|
Cache coherence protocols based on tokens can provide low latency without relying on non-scalable interconnects thanks to the use of efficient requests that are unordered. However, when these unordered requests contend for the same memory block, they may cause protocols races. To resolve the races and ensure the completion of all the cache misses, token protocols use a starvation prevention mechanism that is inefficient and non-scalable in terms of required storage structures and generated traffic. Besides, token protocols use non-silent invalidations which increase the latency of write misses proportionally to the system size. All these problems make token protocols non-scalable. To overcome the main problems of token protocols and increase their scalability, we propose a new starvation prevention mechanism named Priority Requests. This mechanism resolves contention by an efficient, elegant, and flexible method based on ordered requests. Furthermore, thanks to Priority Requests, efficient techniques can be applied to limit the storage requirements of the starvation prevention mechanism, to reduce the total traffic generated for managing protocol races, and to reduce the latency of write misses. Thus, the main problems of token protocols can be solved, which, in turn, contributes to wide their efficiency and scalability.