Chip Multicore Processors (Lecture w/ Exercise)

LecturerAndreas Herkersdorf, Thomas Wild, Michael Vonbun, Philipp Wagner [ML]
Allocation to curriculumSee TUMonline
Offered inSommersemester 2017
Semester weekly hours3  
RegistrationSee “Course criteria & registration”
Scheduled datesSee TUMonline

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

During this course the students will learn the basics of problems and approaches of parallel execution with chip multicore processors.
The relevant problems will be conceptually discussed and state-of-the-art processor example will be presented. Students will learn how to classify processor architectures with respect to their characteristics.


The lecture starts with the motivation for chip multicore processors. Starting from the technological background, the potential and challenges of parallel execution are discussed and state-of-the-art processors will be presented to classify multicore processors. A central aspect of chip multicore processors is the memory hierarchy. With the introduction of caches the coherency problem arises. Solutions for this problem are discussed during the lecture. The implementation of synchronization, both from the hardware and the software view, are discussed subsequently. Non-blocking data structures and Transactional Memory are introduced as possible solutions to relax the synchronization problem. The on-chip interconnect, and especially Network-on-Chip (NoC) are discussed in detail as part of the lecture. Finally, programing models and implementation challenges are discussed.

Previous knowledge expected

Basic understanding of computer architectures. Ideally the kecture 'System-on-Chip Technologies'.

Teaching and learning method (delivery of skills)

The basic learning method is presentation during the lecture, supplemented with group discussions. During the tutorial examples will be discussed. For a better understanding students will read scientific publications as self studies. Case studies will be discussed to get a practical understanding of chip multicore processors.

Assessment (exam method and evaluation)

The exam type is adjusted to the different topics to be conveyed:
Acquired knowledge will be tested in a written exam of 75 minutes.
The final grade is made up of the following elements
- 100 % final exam


John L. Hennessy und David A. Patterson, Computer Architecture - A Quantitative Approach, Academic Press, 4. Edition
Maurice Herlihy und Nir Shavit, The Art of Multiprocessor Programming, Morgan Kaufmann, 1. Edition
David E. Culler, J. P. Singh und Anoop Gupta, Parallel Computer Architecture: A Hardware/Software Approach, Morgan Kaufmann, 1. Edition

Online information