CARAT: A case for virtual memory through compiler- and runtime-based address translation

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Virtual memory is a critical abstraction in modern computer systems. Its common model, paging, is currently seeing considerable innovation, yet its implementations continue to be co-designs between power-hungry/latency-adding hardware (e.g., TLBs, pagewalk caches, pagewalkers, etc) and software (the OS kernel). We make a case for a new model for virtual memory, compiler- and runtime-based address translation (CARAT), which instead is a co-design between the compiler and the OS kernel. CARAT can operate without any hardware support, although it could also be retrofitted into a traditional paging model, and could leverage simpler hardware support. CARAT uses compile-time transformations and optimizations combined with tightly-coupled runtime/kernel interaction to generate programs that run efficiently in a physical address space, but nonetheless allow the kernel to maintain protection and dynamically manage physical memory similar to what is possible using traditional virtual memory. We argue for the feasibility of CARAT through an empirical study of application characteristics and kernel behavior, as well as through the design, implementation, and performance evaluation of a CARAT prototype. Because our prototype works at the IR level (in particular, via LLVM bitcode), it can be applied to most C and C++ programs with minimal or no restrictions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPLDI 2020 - Proceedings of the 41st ACM SIGPLAN Conference on Programming Language Design and Implementation
EditorsAlastair F. Donaldson, Emina Torlak
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Pages329-345
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9781450376136
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 11 2020
Event41st ACM SIGPLAN Conference on Programming Language Design and Implementation, PLDI 2020 - London, United Kingdom
Duration: Jun 15 2020Jun 20 2020

Publication series

NameProceedings of the ACM SIGPLAN Conference on Programming Language Design and Implementation (PLDI)

Conference

Conference41st ACM SIGPLAN Conference on Programming Language Design and Implementation, PLDI 2020
CountryUnited Kingdom
CityLondon
Period6/15/206/20/20

Keywords

  • Memory management
  • Virtual memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software

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