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Virtualization has been rapidly expanding its applications in numerous server and desktop environments to improve the utilization and manageability of physical systems. Such proliferation of virtualized systems opens a new opportunity to improve the scalability of future multi-core architectures. Among the scalability bottlenecks in multi-cores, cache coherence has been a critical problem. Although snoop-based protocols have been dominating commercial multi-core designs, it has been difficult to scale them for more cores, as snooping protocols require high network bandwidth and power consumption for snooping all the caches.
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