A Survey on Cache Management Mechanisms for Real-Time Embedded Systems
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Multicore processors are being extensively used by real-time systems, mainly because of their demand for increased computing power. However, multicore processors have shared resources that affect the predictability of real-time systems, which is the key to correctly estimate the worst-case execution time of tasks. One of the main factors for unpredictability in a multicore processor is the cache memory hierarchy. Recently, many research works have proposed different techniques to deal with caches in multicore processors in the context of real-time systems. Nevertheless, a review and categorization of these techniques is still an open topic and would be very useful for the real-time community. In this article, we present a survey of cache management techniques for real-time embedded systems, from the first studies of the field in 1990 up to the latest research published in 2014. We categorize the main research works and provide a detailed comparison in terms of similarities and differences. We also identify key challenges and discuss future research directions.