Hardware Investigate

Profiling Tools for FPGA-Based Embedded Systems: Survey and Quantitative Comparison

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Executive Summary

Profiling tools are Computer-Aided Design (CAD) tools that help in determining the computationally intensive portions in software. Embedded systems consist of hardware and software components that execute concurrently and efficiently to execute a specific task or application. Profiling tools are used by embedded system designers to choose computationally intensive functions for hardware implementation and acceleration. In this paper the authors review and compare various existing profiling tools for FPGA-based embedded systems. They then describe Airwolf, an FPGAbased profiling tool. They present a quantitative comparison of Airwolf and a well known software-based profiling tool, GNU gprof.

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