CS 203 Advanced Computer Architecture - Winter 2016

  • iEval is now open. Please remember to evaluate me by Friday, March 11. =)
  • Project 4 has been assigned and is due Thursday, March 17.
  • Project 3 has been assigned and is due Thursday, February 25.
  • Project 2 has been assigned and is due Thursday, February 4.
  • Project 1 has been assigned and is due Thursday, January 21.
  • Course location has changed to MSE 011 beginning January 12.
  • A qualifying quiz covering topics from CS161 will be given on Thursday, January 7. An old CS161 course webpage with slides can be found at http://www.cs.ucr.edu/~bhuyan/cs161
  • Assignment 0 has been assigned and will be due Tuesday, January 12.
  • Welcome to CS 203!

Class webpage and communication

The class webpage is located at http://danielwong.org/classes/cs203-w16.

Information, resources, and announcements related to the class will be posted to the webpage.

In addition, we will be using ilearn for assignments, and piazza for discussions and help.

Course Description

This graduate level course cover topics in microarchitecture such as pipelining, branch prediction, instruction-level parallelism, dynamic scheduling, speculation, memory hierarchies, and parallel architectures. This course will be project-based. Projects are designed to allow students to gain computer architecture design skills, and to reinforce topics covered from lectures.

Prerequisite: CS 161


  • (Required) Computer Architecture: A Quantitative Approach, 5th Edition By Hennessy and Patterson
  • (Optional, another great reference book) Parallel Computer Organization and Design By Dubois, Annavaram, and Stenstrom

Grade Breakdown

  • Project 1,2,3: 10% each
  • Project 4: 20%
  • Exam 1: 25%
  • Exam 2: 20%
  • Class Participation: 5%

Project Policies

  • You have 3 slip days that you can use on any one project or combination of projects (except the final project). If you exceed your slip days, there will be a 15% penalty per late day (counting weekends). For group assignments, 1 slip day will be assessed to each group member.
  • No extensions for projects will be given (see slip days). Even if you're one minute late, it will be considered late.
  • All projects will be due at the beginning of class on the due date.
  • All projects should be uploaded to iLearn.


  • You are responsible for all materials covered in lectures.
  • Although assignments are assigned, it will not be graded. The objective is to practice problem solving and design in computer architecture to prepare you for the exams.
  • Cheating in assignments, quizzes, projects, and exams are absolutely prohibited. The minimum penalty for a violation of the regulations will be a zero for the assignment; the maximum penalty will be failure in the course.
  • Examinations must be taken in class on the day they are given. There will be no exceptions.

Academic Integrity

Here at UCR we are committed to upholding and promoting the values of the Tartan Soul: Integrity, Accountability, Excellence, and Respect. As a student in this class, it is your responsibility to act in accordance with these values by completing all assignments in the manner described, and by informing the instructor of suspected acts of academic misconduct by your peers. By doing so, you will not only affirm your own integrity, but also the integrity of the intellectual work of this University, and the degree which it represents. Should you choose to commit academic misconduct in this class, you will be held accountable according to the policies set forth by the University, and will incur appropriate consequences both in this class and from Student Conduct and Academic Integrity Programs. For more information regarding University policy and its enforcement, please visit: conduct.ucr.edu.


You are expected to attend all lectures. While the slides contain all the information you need to know, some of the contents don't make sense unless you attend lecture. =)

The following schedule is tentative and is subject to change.

Date Topic Assignments Slides Readings
Jan 5, T Introduction / Perf, Trends Assignment 0 0-introduction.pptx
Chapter 1
Jan 7, Th Qualifying Quiz / Simulators Quiz Solution 2-simulators.pptx
Jan 12, T Reliability, ISA Project 1
Project 1 Solution
Chapter 1
Appendix A
Jan 14, Th Pipeline 4-pipelining.pptx Appendix C
Jan 19, T Pipeline cont. 5-pipelining.pptx
Jan 21, Th ILP - Static Sample Test 1 Solution
Sample Test 2 Solution
Sample Test 3 Solution
6-ilp-static.pptx Chapter 3
Jan 26, T ILP - Branch Prediction Project 2 7-branchprediction.pptx Appendix C
Chapter 3
Jan 28, Th ILP - Dynamic 8-ilp-dynamic.pptx
Chapter 3
Feb 2, T ILP - Speculative 9-ilp-speculative.pptx
Chapter 3
Feb 4, Th Exam Review
Feb 9, T Exam 1 Exam 1 Solution
Feb 11, Th Memory 10-memory.pptx Chapter 2
Feb 16, T Cache Project 3 11-cache.pptx Appendix B
Chapter 2
Feb 18, Th VM 12-vm.pptx Chapter 2
Feb 23, T Multi-threading / TLP Project 4 13-tlp.pptx Chapter 3
Feb 25, Th Vector/GPU 14-vector-gpgpu.pptx Chapter 4
Mar 1, T Warehouse Scale Computing Cache Problems
VM Problems
More Problems
15-datacenters.pptx Chapter 6
Mar 3, Th Research Topics 16-research.pptx
Mar 8, T Review
Mar 10, Th Exam 2