By Alpha Architecture Committee, Richard T. Witek
This can be the authoritative reference on electronic apparatus Corporation's new 64-bit RISC Alpha structure. Written through the designers of the inner electronic requisites, this ebook comprises entire descriptions of the typical structure required for all implementations and the interfaces required to aid the OSF/1 and OpenVMS working systems.
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Extra info for Alpha Architecture Reference Manual
T h e floating-point register to be used is specified by t h e F a , Fb, a n d Fc fields all pointing to t h e s a m e floating-point register. If t h e F a , F b , a n d Fc fields do not all 3-12 Common Architecture (I) point to t h e s a m e floating-point register, t h e n it is U N P R E D I C T A B L E which register is used. 5 PALcode Instruction Format T h e Privileged Architecture L i b r a r y (PALcode) format is used to specify extended processor functions. It h a s t h e format shown in F i g u r e 3 - 6 .
To allow i m p l e m e n t a t i o n s to achieve h i g h performance, t h e Alpha architecture includes explicit h i n t s b a s e d on a branch-prediction model: 1. For m a n y i m p l e m e n t a t i o n s of computed b r a n c h e s (JSR/RET/JMP), t h e r e is a s u b s t a n t i a l performance gain in forming a good guess of t h e expected t a r g e t Icache a d d r e s s before register Rb is accessed. 2. F o r m a n y i m p l e m e n t a t i o n s , t h e first-level (or only) I-cache is no bigger t h a n a page (8 KB to 64 KB).
T h e P C relative calculation u s i n g t h e s e bits c a n be exactly t h e PC-relative calculation u s e d in unconditional b r a n c h e s . T h e low 16 bits a r e enough to specify a n I-cache block w i t h i n t h e largest possible Alpha page a n d hence a r e expected to be enough for branch-prediction logic to s t a r t a n early I-cache access for t h e most likely t a r g e t . For all b r a n c h e s , h i n t or opcode bits a r e u s e d to distinguish simple b r a n c h e s , s u b r o u t i n e calls, s u b r o u t i n e r e t u r n s , a n d coroutine links.