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Abstract

Alin Jula, Lawrence Rauchwerger, "Defero - a Semantic Driven Memory Allocator," Technical Report, TR06-001, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Texas A&M University, Parasol Lab, Department of Computer Science, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-3112, Jan 2006.
Technical Report(abstract)

We propose a novel container-centric memory management and allocation scheme in which the container's semantics guide the allocation of its elements. At compile time, the container's semantics provide knowledge that is evaluated at run-time and then used for more efficient memory clustering. Our approach allows an application to use different allocation policies for different types of containers, or even different instantiations of the same type of container. We have integrated Defero, our memory allocator, with the C++ Standard Template Library (STL) containers, which allows us to automatically use Defero for applications that use STL containers and algorithms. Results from our prototype implementation of Defero have been very promising. We have used Defero in applications from molecular dynamics, network simulation, and numerical methods on arbitrary polygonal and polyhedral meshes. Experimental results show that Defero reduces overall execution time up to 32% for some applications. Stand-alone STL algorithms have shown a reduction in execution time of up to 20 times when using Defero allocated containers. These improvements can be mainly attributed to decreased TLB misses, by up to 91% in some applications.