Ariane by zarubaf

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Ariane is a 6-stage, single issue, in-order CPU which implements the 64-bit RISC-V instruction set. It fully implements I, M and C extensions as specified in Volume I: User-Level ISA V 2.1 as well as the draft privilege extension 1.10. It implements three privilege levels M, S, U to fully support a Unix-like operating system.

It has configurable size, separate TLBs, a hardware PTW and branch-prediction (branch target buffer and branch history table). The primary design goal was on reducing critical path length.

Getting Started

Go and get the RISC-V tools.

Checkout the repository and initialize all submodules

git clone
git submodule update --init --recursive

The Verilator testbench relies on our forked version of riscv-fesvr which can be found here. Follow the README there and make sure that your compiler and linker is aware of the library (e.g.: add it to your path if it is in a non-default directory).

Build the Verilator model of Ariane by using the Makefile:

make verilate

This will create a C++ model of the core including a SystemVerilog wrapper and link it against a C++ testbench (in the tb subfolder). The binary can be found in the obj_dir and accepts a RISC-V ELF binary as an argument, e.g.:

obj_dir/Variane_wrapped -p rv64um-v-divuw

The Verilator testbench makes use of the riscv-fesvr. That means that bare riscv-tests can be run on the simulator.

Due to the way the C++ testbench is constructed we need a slightly altered version of the riscv-fesvr which can be found here.

Planned Improvements

While developing Ariane it has become evident that, in order to support Linux, the atomic extension is going to be mandatory. While the core is currently booting Linux by emulating Atomics in BBL (in a single core environment this is trivially met by disabling interrupts) this is not the behavior which is intended. For that reason we are going to fully support all atomic extensions in the very near future.

Furthermore, we have major IPC improvements planned. Specifically this will resolve about the way branches and jumps are currently handled in the core.

Going Beyond

The core has been developed with a full licensed version of QuestaSim. If you happen to have this simulator available yourself here is how you could run the core with it:

Start the simulation using Modelsim:

make build
make sim

To specify the test to run use (e.g.: you want to run rv64ui-p-sraw inside the riscv-tests isa folder:

make sim riscv-test=rv64ui-p-sraw

If you call simc instead of sim it will run without the GUI.

Or start any of the unit tests by:

make alu

Randomized Constrained Testing with Torture

Ariane's core testbench is fully compatible with the randomized constrained testing framework called Torture. To start testing Ariane all you need is to step into the riscv-torture/ folder and issue:

make rgentest

Which will produce a single randomized program, runs it on Spike (see Getting Started) and on the RTL simulator (QuestaSim) by calling ariane-run-torture.

Torture's overnight tests work the same way, just call

make rnight

C (a.k.a. Verilator) tests are currently not supported.


Check out the contribution guide


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