Principles and Practices of Interconnection Networks - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780122007514, 9780080497808

Principles and Practices of Interconnection Networks

1st Edition

Authors: William Dally Brian Towles
Hardcover ISBN: 9780122007514
eBook ISBN: 9780080497808
Imprint: Morgan Kaufmann
Published Date: 18th December 2003
Page Count: 550
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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Introduction to Interconnection Networks 1.1 Three Questions About Interconnection Networks 1.2 Uses of Interconnection Networks 1.3 Network Basics 1.4 History 1.5 Organization of this Book

Chapter 2 A Simple Interconnection Network 2.1 Network Specifications and Constraints 2.2 Topology 2.3 Routing 2.4 Flow Control 2.5 Router Design 2.6 Performance Analysis 2.7 Exercises

Chapter 3 Topology Basics 3.1 Nomenclature 3.2 Traffic Patterns 3.3 Performance 3.4 Packaging Cost 3.5 Case Study: The SGI Origin 2000 3.6 Bibliographic Notes 3.7 Exercises

Chapter 4 Butterfly Networks 4.1 The Structure of Butterfly Networks 4.2 Isomorphic Butterflies 4.3 Performance and Packaging Cost 4.4 Path Diversity and Extra Stages 4.5 Case Study: The BBN Butterfly 4.6 Bibliographic Notes 4.7 Exercises

Chapter 5 Torus Networks 5.1 The Structure of Torus Networks 5.2 Performance 5.3 Building Mesh and Torus Networks 5.4 Express Cubes 5.5 Case Study: The MIT J-Machine 5.6 Bibliographic Notes 5.7 Exercises Chapter 6 Non-Blocking Networks 6.1 Non-Blocking vs. Non-Interfering Networks 6.2 Crossbar Networks 6.3 Clos Networks 6.4 Benes Networks 6.5 Sorting Networks 6.6 Case Study: The Velio VC2002 (Zeus) Grooming Switch 6.7 Bibliographic Notes 6.8 Exercises

Chapter 7 Slicing and Dicing 7.1 Concentrators and Distributors 7.2 Slicing and Dicing 7.3 Slicing Multistage Networks 7.4 Case Study: Bit Slicing in the Tiny Tera 7.5 Bibliographic Notes 7.6 Exercises

Chapter 8 Routing Basics 8.1 A Routing Example 8.2 Taxonomy of Routing Algorithms 8.3 The Routing Relation 8.4 Deterministic Routing 8.5 Case Study: Dimension-Order Routing in the Cray T3D 8.6 Bibliographic Notes 8.7 Exercises

Chapter 9 Oblivious Routing 9.1 Valiant's Randomized Routing Algorithm 9.2 Minimal Oblivious Routing 9.3 Load-Balanced Oblivious Routing 9.4 Analysis of Oblivious Routing 9.5 Case Study: Oblivious Routing in the Avici Terabit Switch Router(TSR) 9.6 Bibliographic Notes 9.7 Exercises

Chapter 10 Adaptive Routing 10.1 Adaptive Routing Basics 10.2 Minimal Adaptive Routing 10.3 Fully Adaptive Routing 10.4 Load-Balanced Adaptive Routing 10.5 Search-Based Routing 10.6 Case Study: Adaptive Routing in the Thinking Machines CM-5 10.7 Bibliographic Notes 10.8 Exercises

Chapter 11 Routing Mechanics 11.1 Table-Based Routing 11.2 Algorithmic Routing 11.3 Case Study: Oblivious Source Routing in the IBM Vulcan Network 11.4 Bibliographic Notes 11.5 Exercises

Chapter 12 Flow Control Basics 12.1 Resources and Allocation Units 12.2 Bufferless Flow Control 12.3 Circuit Switching 12.4 Bibliographic Notes 12.5 Exercises

Chapter 13 Buffered Flow Control 13.1 Packet-Buffer Flow Control 13.2 Flit-Buffer Flow Control 13.3 Buffer Management and Backpressure 13.4 Flit-Reservation Flow Control 13.5 Bibliographic Notes 13.6 Exercises

Chapter 14 Deadlock and Livelock 14.1 Deadlock 14.2 Deadlock Avoidance 14.3 Adaptive Routing 14.4 Deadlock Recovery 14.5 Livelock 14.6 Case Study: Deadlock Avoidance in the Cray T3E 14.7 Bibliographic Notes 14.8 Exercises

Chapter 15 Quality of Service 15.1 Service Classes and Service Contracts 15.2 Burstiness and Network Delays 15.3 Implementation of Guaranteed Services 15.4 Implementation of Best-Effort Services 15.5 Separation of Resources 15.6 Case Study: ATM Service Classes 15.7 Case Study: Virtual Networks in the Avici TSR 15.8 Bibliographic Notes 15.9 Exercises

Chapter 16 Router Architecture 16.1 Basic Router Architecture 16.2 Stalls 16.3 Closing the Loop with Credits 16.4 Reallocating a Channel 16.5 Speculation and Lookahead 16.6 Flit and Credit Encoding 16.7 Case Study: The Alpha 21364 Router 16.8 Bibliographic Notes 16.9 Exercises

Chapter 17 Router Datapath Components 17.1 Input Buffer Organization 17.2 Switches 17.3 Output Organization 17.4 Case Study: The Datapath of the IBM Colony Router 17.5 Bibliographic Notes 17.6 Exercises

Chapter 18 Arbitration 18.1 Arbitration Timing 18.2 Fairness 18.3 Fixed Priority Arbiter 18.4 Variable Priority Iterative Arbiters 18.5 Matrix Arbiter 18.6 Queuing Arbiter 18.7 Exercises

Chapter 19 Allocation 19.1 Representations 19.2 Exact Algorithms 19.3 Separable Allocators 19.4 Wavefront Allocator 19.5 Incremental vs. Batch Allocation 19.6 Multistage Allocation 19.7 Performance of Allocators 19.8 Case Study: The Tiny Tera Allocator 19.9 Bibliographic Notes 19.10 Exercises

Chapter 20 Network Interfaces 20.1 Processor-Network Interface 20.2 Shared-Memory Interface 20.3 Line-Fabric Interface 20.4 Case Study: The MIT M-Machine Network Interface 20.5 Bibliographic Notes 20.6 Exercises

Chapter 21 Error Control 411 21.1 Know Thy Enemy: Failure Modes and Fault Models 21.2 The Error Control Process: Detection, Containment, and Recovery 21.3 Link Level Error Control 21.4 Router Error Control 21.5 Network-Level Error Control 21.6 End-to-end Error Control 21.7 Bibliographic Notes 21.8 Exercises

Chapter 22 Buses 22.1 Bus Basics 22.2 Bus Arbitration 22.3 High Performance Bus Protocol 22.4 From Buses to Networks 22.5 Case Study: The PCI Bus 22.6 Bibliographic Notes 22.7 Exercises

Chapter 23 Performance Analysis 23.1 Measures of Interconnection Network Performance 23.2 Analysis 23.3 Validation 23.4 Case Study: Efficiency and Loss in the BBN Monarch Network 23.5 Bibliographic Notes 23.6 Exercises

Chapter 24 Simulation 24.1 Levels of Detail 24.2 Network Workloads 24.3 Simulation Measurements 24.4 Simulator Design 24.5 Bibliographic Notes 24.6 Exercises

Chapter 25 Simulation Examples 495 25.1 Routing 25.2 Flow Control Performance 25.3 Fault Tolerance

Appendix A Nomenclature Appendix B Glossary Appendix C Network Simulator


One of the greatest challenges faced by designers of digital systems is optimizing the communication and interconnection between system components. Interconnection networks offer an attractive and economical solution to this communication crisis and are fast becoming pervasive in digital systems. Current trends suggest that this communication bottleneck will be even more problematic when designing future generations of machines. Consequently, the anatomy of an interconnection network router and science of interconnection network design will only grow in importance in the coming years.

This book offers a detailed and comprehensive presentation of the basic principles of interconnection network design, clearly illustrating them with numerous examples, chapter exercises, and case studies. It incorporates hardware-level descriptions of concepts, allowing a designer to see all the steps of the process from abstract design to concrete implementation.

Key Features

  • Case studies throughout the book draw on extensive author experience in designing interconnection networks over a period of more than twenty years, providing real world examples of what works, and what doesn't.
  • Tightly couples concepts with implementation costs to facilitate a deeper understanding of the tradeoffs in the design of a practical network.
  • A set of examples and exercises in every chapter help the reader to fully understand all the implications of every design decision.


Practitioners, researchers and students in Computer Architecture and Digital System Design.


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Morgan Kaufmann
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Dally and Towles use their combined three decades of experience to create a book that elucidates the theory and practice of computer interconnection networks. On one hand, they derive fundamentals and enumerate design alternatives. On the other, they present numerous case studies and are not afraid to give their experienced opinions on current choices and future trends. This book is a "must buy" for those interested in or designing interconnection networks. -Mark Hill, University of Wisconsin, Madison The scholarship of this book is unparalleled in its area. This text is for interconnection networks what Hennessy and Patterson's text is for computer architecture---an authoritative, one-stop source that clearly and methodically explains the more significant concepts. Treatment of the material both in breadth and in depth is very well done...a must read and a slam dunk! -Timothy Mark Pinkston, University of Southern California This book will serve as excellent teaching material, an invaluable research reference, and a very handy supplement for system designers. In addition to documenting and clearly presenting the key research findings, the book's incisive practical treatment is unique. By presenting how actual design constraints impact each facet of interconnection network design, the book deftly ties theoretical findings of the past decades to real systems design. This perspective is critically needed in engineering education. -Li-Shiuan Peh, Princeton University This book will instantly become a canonical reference in the field of interconnection networks. Prof. Dally's pioneering research dramatically and permanently changed this field by introducing rigorous evaluation techniques and creative solutions to the challenge of high-performance computer system communication. This well-organized textbook will benefit both students and experienced practitioners. The presentation and exercises are a result of years of classroom experience in creating this material. All in all, this is a must-have source of information. -Craig Stunkel, IBM Principles and Practices of Interconnection Networks is a triple threat: comprehensive, well written and authoritative. The need for this book has grown with the increasing impact of interconnects on computer system performance and cost. It will be a great tool for students and teachers alike, and will clearly help practicing engineers build better networks. -Steve Scott, Cray Inc. The most comprehensive and coherent work on modern interconnection networks. As leaders in the field, Dally and Towles capitalize on their vast experience as researchers and engineers to present both the theory behind such networks and the practice of building them. This book is a necessity for anyone studying, analyzing, or designing interconnection networks. -Stephen W. Keckler, The University of Texas at Austin

About the Authors

William Dally Author

Affiliations and Expertise

Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA

Brian Towles Author

Affiliations and Expertise

Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA