BEng Computer Systems Engineering / Course details
Year of entry: 2021
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Course unit details:
|Unit level||Level 2|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 2|
|Offered by||Department of Computer Science|
|Available as a free choice unit?||Yes|
The basic architecture of computer systems has been covered in first year course units which detailed both the instruction set architecture and the micro-architecture (hardware structure) of simple processors. Although these principles underlie the vast majority of modern computers, there is a wide range of both hardware and software techniques which are employed to increase the performance, reliability and flexibility of systems.
|Unit title||Unit code||Requirement type||Description|
|Fundamentals of Computer Architecture||COMP15111||Pre-Requisite||Compulsory|
The aims of this course are to introduce the most important system architecture approaches. To give a wider understanding of how real systems operate and, from that understanding, the ability to optimise their use.
describe the techniques which are employed in modern computing systems to increase performance, reliability and flexibility.
compare the strengths and weaknesses of different system architectures.
explain how and predict to which extent such techniques impact the performance, reliability and flexibility of computing systems.
identify suitable system architectures for a given set of system requirements.
The motivation behind advanced architectural techniques.
The need to overcome latency. Caching as a principle, examples of caching in practice. Processor cache structure and operation.
Principles of pipelining. Implementation of a processor pipeline and its properties. Pipelining requirements and limitations. Additional support for pipelining.
Basic multi-threading principles. Processor support for multi-threading. Simultaneous multi-threading.
Motivation for multi-core. Possible multi-core structures. Cache coherence.
File System Support
Implementation of file systems. RAID
Motivation for Virtual Machines. Language Virtual Machines. System Virtual Machines. Virtual Machine implementation. Binary Translation
|Practical skills assessment||20%|
COMP25212 reading list can be found on the Department of Computer Science website for current students.
|Scheduled activity hours|
|Assessment written exam||2|
|Practical classes & workshops||12|
|Independent study hours|
|Oliver Rhodes||Unit coordinator|
Course unit materials
Links to course unit teaching materials can be found on the School of Computer Science website for current students.