Post-Silicon Verification for Cache Coherence
Source: University of Michigan
Modern processor designs are extremely complex and difficult to validate during development, causing a growing portion of the verification effort to shift to post-silicon, after the first few hardware prototypes become available. Extremely slow simulation speeds during pre-silicon verification result in functional errors escaping into silicon, a problem that is further exacerbated by the growing complexity of the memory subsystem in multi-core platforms. In this paper, the authors present CoSMa, a novel technology offering high coverage functional post-silicon validation of cache coherence protocols in multi-core systems. It enables the detection and diagnosis of functional errors in the memory subsystem by recording at runtime a compact encoding of the operations occurring at each cache line and checking their correctness at regular intervals.