Notes: Computer Architecture

Notes were taken while enrolled in CMPE 202 with Prof. Jose Renau. Some notes are from TAing CMPE 110 with Prof. Jishen Zhao. Please let me know if you see any errors!

Notes were taken using Notability on an iPad.


thumbnail performance notes


Speedup, CPI, IPC.

Instruction Set Architecture

computer architecture isa thumbnail



Branch Prediction

branch prediction


Pattern History Table, prediction accuracy, global history register, and hybrid predictors.


Modern Out of Order Processors

modern out of order processors


Read order buffer (ROB), renaming tables (renRAT, retRAT), physical vs. logical registers, exception handling, free list.

Memory Hierarchy



Locality, caches: direct mapped / set associative, performance, hits / misses, optimization techniques.




GPU, thread, process, performance, memory coherence, MSI / MOSI / MOESI state diagrams, coherence messages, snoopy bus, directories, load link, memory consistency vs coherence, transactional memory.