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See MIPS Run, 2nd Edition by Dominic Sweetman

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Chapter 4 How Caches Work on MIPS Processors

A MIPS CPU without a cache isn’t really a RISC. Perhaps that’s not fair; for special purposes you might be able to build a MIPS CPU with a small, tightly coupled memory that can be accessed in a fixed number of pipeline stages (preferably one). But MIPS CPUs have always had cache hardware built tightly into the pipeline.

This chapter will describe the way MIPS caches work and what the software has to do to make caches useful and reliable. From reset, almost everything about the cache state is undefined, so bootstrap software must be careful to initialize the caches correctly before relying on them. You might also benefit from some hints and tips for use when sizing the caches (it would be bad software ...

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