Generating Efficient Simulators from a Specification Language

Larsson, Fredrik (1997) Generating Efficient Simulators from a Specification Language. [SICS Report]



A simulator is a powerful tool for hardware as well as software development. However, implementing an efficient simulator by hand is a very labour intensive and error-prone task. This paper describes a tool for automatic generation of efficient instruction set architecture (ISA) simulators. A specification file describing the ISA is used as input to the tool. Besides a simulator, the tool also generates an assembler and a disassembler for the architecture. We present a method where statistics is used to identify frequently used instructions. Special versions of these instructions are then created by the tool in order to speed up the simulator. With this technique we have generated a SPARC V8 simulator which is more efficient than our hand-coded and hand-optimized one.

Item Type:SICS Report
Uncontrolled Keywords:Instruction Set Simulator, Interpreter, Specification Language, Instruction
ID Code:2234
Deposited By:Vicki Carleson
Deposited On:28 Jul 2009
Last Modified:18 Nov 2009 16:02

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