The competency of superscalar CPUs attains more dominance with the usage of simultaneous multithreading or the SMT technique. With this method, the modern processor resources can be exploited to the fullest level by the multiple independent threads. To do so these multiple threads utilizes the same clock cycle to carry out different instructions by using the execution unit that the first thread spared.
The add-ons needed to achieve this are the ability to fetch instructions from multiple threads in a cycle and a larger register file to hold data from multiple threads, where the basic processor unit remains the same. The numbers of multiple threads are usually limited to 2,4, or 8 depending on the chip complexity
Simultaneous multithreading, often abbreviated as SMT, is a technique for improving the overall efficiency of superscalar CPUs. SMT permits multiple independent threads of execution to better utilize the resources provided by modern processor architectures. Simultaneous multithreading allows multiple threads to execute different instructions in the same clock cycle, using the execution units that the first thread left spare. This is done without great changes to the basic processor architecture: the main additions needed are the ability to fetch instructions from multiple threads in a cycle, and a larger register file to hold data from multiple threads. The number of concurrent threads can be decided by the chip designers, but practical restrictions on chip complexity usually limit the number to 2, 4 or sometimes 8 concurrent threads.
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