Error detection via online checking of cache coherence with token coherence signatures
To provide high dependability in a multithreaded system despite hardware faults, the system must detect and correct errors in its shared memory system. Recent research has explored dynamic checking of cache coherence as a comprehensive approach to memory system error detection. However, existing coherence checkers are costly to implement, incur high interconnection network traffic overhead, and do not scale well. In this paper, we describe the Token Coherence Signature Checker (TCSC), which provides comprehensive, low-cost, scalable coherence checking by maintaining signatures that represent recent histories of coherence events at all nodes (cache and memory controllers). Periodically, these signatures are sent to a verifier to determine if an error occurred. TCSC has a small constant hardware cost per node, independent of cache and memory size and the number of nodes. TCSCs interconnect bandwidth overhead has a constant upper bound and never exceeds 7% in our experiments. TCSC has negligible impact on system performance. © 2007 IEEE.
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