SimBricks enables us to measure full system performance numbers like end-to-end application throughput and latency for custom hardware designs such as offloading computations from the CPU through full system simulation. However, energy consumption is often an equally important metric. For example, we might be interested in the amount of energy we save compared to running our workload in software only. Additionally, when designing this hardware, we want to make well-informed decisions for tuning design parameters that trade off speed or computational capabilities and energy consumption. Therefore, we need to be able to evaluate the design early in the process. Considering that energy consumption is spread across all the system’s components and also changes dynamically based on the workload, we use SimBricks for full-system simulation running real applications and the actual workloads. We take a modular approach by estimating the energy consumption individually for the different components and afterwards summing them up into complete-system numbers. Luckily, there already exists work for estimating energy consumption for many of the component simulators which we can make use of.


AC/DSim: Full System Energy Estimation with Modular Simulation

Jonas Kaufmann
In ACM Student Research Competition @ SOSP 2023, 2023.
Third Place in Graduate Category