Chapter 2.: Models

Operating Systems

Volume 60 of the series Lecture Notes in Computer Science pp 17-98


Computer organization and architecture

  • M. J. FlynnAffiliated withDepartment of Electrical Engineering Digital Systems Laboratory, Stanford University

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The instruction set is a defining influence on the machine organization that interprets it. A well mapped machine is one whose organization directly supports a single instruction set and whose state transition matches those called for by the instruction.

An important determinant in the architecture is the mechanism for naming and locating an object in the storage hierarchy. Three classes of issues are involved in name specification; the process name space which deals with issues unique to a single program, the processor name space which is concerned with interprocess communication issues and finally a memory space which is concerned with the physical parameters of access time and bandwidth.

A Canonic Interpretive Form (CIF) of higher level languages programs is proposed to measure the "minimum" space to represent and time to interpret a given program. This "ideal" is a basis for a comparison with traditional machine languages which require ten times more program space than the CIF.

Synthesis of program forms (called Directly Executed Languages—DELs) which approach CIF measures is proposed as well as results of a recently completed FORTRAN DEL (DELTRAN).

Within the context of traditional machine architectures, concurrency or parallel arrangement of processors is possible to improve performance. Two classes of organizations are discussed: the single instruction multiple data stream type and the multiple instruction multiple data stream. These organizations, together with a performance analysis based on certain program behavior characteristics, is reviewed.