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Computers as Components, 3rd Edition by Marilyn Wolf

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8.3 Categories of Multiprocessors

Multiprocessors in general-purpose computing have a long and rich history. Embedded multiprocessors have been widely deployed for several decades. The range of embedded multiprocessor implementations is also impressively broad—multiprocessing has been used for relatively low-performance systems and to achieve very high levels of real-time performance at very low energy levels.

Shared memory vs. message passing

There are two major types of multiprocessor architectures as illustrated in Figure 8.3:

Shared memory systems have a pool of processors (P1, P2, etc.) that can read and write a collection of memories (M1, M2, etc.).

Message passing systems have a pool of processors that can send messages to each ...

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