Using Cacheline Reuse Characteristics for Prefetcher Throttling

Hidetsugu IRIE  Takefumi MIYOSHI  Goki HONJO  Kei HIRAKI  Tsutomu YOSHINAGA  

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Information and Systems   Vol.E95-D    No.12    pp.2928-2938
Publication Date: 2012/12/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1361
DOI: 10.1587/transinf.E95.D.2928
Print ISSN: 0916-8532
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Section on Parallel and Distributed Computing and Networking)
Category: Computer Architecture
microarchitecture,  cache,  prefetch,  

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One of the significant issues of processor architecture is to overcome memory latency. Prefetching can greatly improve cache performance, but it has the drawback of cache pollution, unless its aggressiveness is properly set. Several techniques that have been proposed for prefetcher throttling use accuracy as a metric, but their robustness were not sufficient because of the variations in programs' working set sizes and cache capacities. In this study, we revisit prefetcher throttling from the viewpoint of data lifetime. Exploiting the characteristics of cache line reuse, we propose Cache-Convection-Control-based Prefetch Optimization Plus (CCCPO+), which enhances the feedback algorithm of our previous CCCPO. Evaluation results showed that this novel approach achieved a 30% improvement over no prefetching in the geometric mean of the SPEC CPU 2006 benchmark suite with 256 KB LLC, 1.8% over the latest prefetcher throttling, and 0.5% over our previous CCCPO. Moreover, it showed superior stability compared to related works, while lowering the hardware cost.