Intel Architecture Optimization Manual
In general, developing fast applications for Intel Architecture (IA) processors is not difficult. An understanding of the architecture and good development practices make the difference between a fast application and one that runs significantly slower than its full potential. Of course, applications developed for the 8086/8088, 80286, Intel386™ (DX or SX), and Intel486™ processors will execute on the Pentium®, Pentium Pro and Pentium II processors without any modification or recompilation. However, the following code optimization techniques and architectural information will help you tune your application to its greatest potential.
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The Pentium processor has two parallel integer pipelines as shown in Figure 2-1. The main pipe (U) has five stages: prefetch (PF), Decode stage 1(D1), Decode stage 2 (D2), Execute (E), and Writeback (WB). The secondary pipe (V) is similar to the main one but has some limitations on the instructions it can execute. The limitations will be described in more detail in later sections.
The Pentium processor can issue up to two instructions every cycle. During execution, the next two instructions are checked and, if possible, they are issued such that the first one executes in the U-pipe, and the second in the V-pipe. If it is not possible to issue two instructions, then the next instruction is issued to the U-pipe and no instruction is issued to the V-pipe.
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Intel Architecture Optimization ManualExtending the World’s Most Popular Processor ArchitectureIntel Architecture Software Developers Manual