The recent trend towards system-level design gives rise to new challenges for reusing existing RTL intellectual properties (IPs) and their verification environment in TLM. While techniques and tools to abstract RTL IPs into TLM models have begun to appear, the problem of reusing, at TLM, a verification environment originally developed for an RTL IP is still under-explored, particularly when ABV is adopted. Some frameworks have been proposed to deal with ABV at TLM, but they assume a top-down design and verification flow, where assertions are defined ex-novo at TLM level. In contrast, the reuse of existing assertions in an RTL-to-TLM bottom-up design flow has not been analyzed yet, except by using transactors to create a mixed simulation between the TLM design and the RTL checkers corresponding to the assertions. However, the use of transactors may lead to longer verification time due to the need of developing and verifying the transactors themselves. Moreover, the simulation time is negatively affected by the presence of transactors, which slow down the simulation at the speed of the slowest parts (i.e., RTL checkers). This article proposes an alternative methodology that does not require transactors for reusing assertions, originally defined for a given RTL IP, in order to verify the corresponding TLM model. Experimental results have been conducted on benchmarks with different characteristics and complexity to show the applicability and the efficacy of the proposed methodology.

Reusing RTL assertion checkers for verification of SystemC TLM models

BOMBIERI, Nicola;FUMMI, Franco;GUARNIERI, Valerio;PRAVADELLI, Graziano;STEFANNI, Francesco;GHASEMPOURI, TARA;LORA, MICHELE;
2015

Abstract

The recent trend towards system-level design gives rise to new challenges for reusing existing RTL intellectual properties (IPs) and their verification environment in TLM. While techniques and tools to abstract RTL IPs into TLM models have begun to appear, the problem of reusing, at TLM, a verification environment originally developed for an RTL IP is still under-explored, particularly when ABV is adopted. Some frameworks have been proposed to deal with ABV at TLM, but they assume a top-down design and verification flow, where assertions are defined ex-novo at TLM level. In contrast, the reuse of existing assertions in an RTL-to-TLM bottom-up design flow has not been analyzed yet, except by using transactors to create a mixed simulation between the TLM design and the RTL checkers corresponding to the assertions. However, the use of transactors may lead to longer verification time due to the need of developing and verifying the transactors themselves. Moreover, the simulation time is negatively affected by the presence of transactors, which slow down the simulation at the speed of the slowest parts (i.e., RTL checkers). This article proposes an alternative methodology that does not require transactors for reusing assertions, originally defined for a given RTL IP, in order to verify the corresponding TLM model. Experimental results have been conducted on benchmarks with different characteristics and complexity to show the applicability and the efficacy of the proposed methodology.
ABV; Transaction-level Modeling; Verification
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11562/889983
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