Power Management of Datacenter Workloads Using Per-Core Power Gating

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Executive Summary

Dynamic Voltage and Frequency Scaling (DVFS) is one of the most successful power management mechanisms provided by modern processors. Nevertheless, the efficacy of DVFS is limited by its dynamic range, ultimately fixed by the minimum voltage necessary to operate the transistors and the maximum voltage that can be thermally tolerated. Voltage scaling is also less applicable to multi-core environments running heterogeneous workloads. Since there is typically a common voltage plane shared across all cores, a lower supply voltage cannot be employed unless all cores are simultaneously ready to use it. Alternatively, multiple voltage planes can be implemented at additional cost and design complexity.

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