Hardware

Maximizing Spare Utilization by Virtually Reorganizing Faulty Cache Lines

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Executive Summary

Aggressive technology scaling to 45nm and below introduces serious reliability challenges to the design of microprocessors. Since a large fraction of chip area is devoted to on-chip caches, it is important to protect these SRAM structures against lifetime and manufacture-time failures. Designers typically over-provision caches with additional resources to overcome hard-faults. However, static allocation and binding of redundant spares results in low utilization of the extra resources and ultimately limits the number of defects that can be tolerated.

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