Next-Sequential Prefetching Using a Branch History Table
Original Publication Date: 1987-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Feb-01
The present invention uses a Branch History Table (BHT) to perform Next Sequential Instruction (NSI) prefetching. The use of a BHT to perform NSI prefetching has several advantages over standard approaches to NSI prefetching. These advantages derive from the fact that it is the branches within the line that determine whether or not NSI is correct. A correct BHT can serve as a basis for this prediction, and the prediction is updateable as the branching activity within the line becomes manifest. It is also clear that lines of instructions are enterable at multiple points and the correctness of NSI can be sensitive to the entry point. A BHT activated NSI algorithm would clearly be entry-point sensitive, but the action of the BHT must not be interfered with to any major extent as NSI is added as part of the BHT activity.