High-Level Synthesis (HLS) for FPGAs is attracting popularity and is increasingly used to handle complex systems with multiple integrated components. To increase performance and efficiency, HLS flows now adopt several advanced optimization techniques. Aggressive optimizations and system level integration can cause the introduction of bugs that are only observable on-chip. Debugging support for circuits generated with HLS is receiving a considerable attention. Among the data that can be collected on chip for debugging, one of the most important is the state of the Finite State Machines (FSM) controlling the components of the circuit. However, this usually requires a large amount of memory to trace the behavior during the execution. This work proposes an approach that takes advantage of the HLS information and of the structure of the FSM to compress control flow traces and to integrate optimized components for on-chip debugging. The generated checkers analyze the FSM execution on-fly, automatically notifying when a bug is detected, localizing it and providing data about its cause. The traces are compressed using a software profiling technique, called Efficient Path Profiling (EPP), adapted for the debugging of hardware accelerators generated with HLS. With this technique, the size of the memory used to store control flow traces can be reduced up to 2 orders of magnitude, compared to state-of-the-art.

Using Efficient Path Profiling to Optimize Memory Consumption of On-Chip Debugging for High-Level Synthesis

FEZZARDI, PIETRO;LATTUADA, MARCO;FERRANDI, FABRIZIO
2017

Abstract

High-Level Synthesis (HLS) for FPGAs is attracting popularity and is increasingly used to handle complex systems with multiple integrated components. To increase performance and efficiency, HLS flows now adopt several advanced optimization techniques. Aggressive optimizations and system level integration can cause the introduction of bugs that are only observable on-chip. Debugging support for circuits generated with HLS is receiving a considerable attention. Among the data that can be collected on chip for debugging, one of the most important is the state of the Finite State Machines (FSM) controlling the components of the circuit. However, this usually requires a large amount of memory to trace the behavior during the execution. This work proposes an approach that takes advantage of the HLS information and of the structure of the FSM to compress control flow traces and to integrate optimized components for on-chip debugging. The generated checkers analyze the FSM execution on-fly, automatically notifying when a bug is detected, localizing it and providing data about its cause. The traces are compressed using a software profiling technique, called Efficient Path Profiling (EPP), adapted for the debugging of hardware accelerators generated with HLS. With this technique, the size of the memory used to store control flow traces can be reduced up to 2 orders of magnitude, compared to state-of-the-art.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/1030731
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