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Author alexandre.vassalotti
Recipients alexandre.vassalotti, blaisorblade, christian.heimes, lemburg, pitrou, rhettinger, skip.montanaro
Date 2009-01-03.00:45:25
SpamBayes Score 4.68522e-11
Marked as misclassified No
Message-id <>
The patch make a huge difference on 64-bit Linux. I get a 20% speed-up
and the lowest run time so far. That is quite impressive!

At first glance, it seems the extra registers of the x86-64 architecture
permit GCC to avoid spilling registers onto the stack (see assembly just
below). However, I don't know why the speed up due to the patch is much
more significant on x86-64 than on x86.

This is the x86 assembly generated by GCC 4.3 (annotated and
slightly edited for readability):

    movl    -440(%ebp), %eax  # tmp = next_instr
    movl    $145, %esi        # opcode = LIST_APPEND
    movl    8(%ebp), %ecx     # f
    subl    -408(%ebp), %eax  # tmp -= first_instr
    movl    %eax, 60(%ecx)    # f->f_lasti = tmp
    movl    -440(%ebp), %ebx  # next_instr
    movzbl  (%ebx), %eax      # tmp = *next_instr
    addl    $1, %ebx          # next_instr++
    movl    %ebx, -440(%ebp)  # next_instr
    movl    opcode_targets(,%eax,4), %eax  # tmp = opcode_targets[tmp]
    jmp     *%eax             # goto *tmp

And this is the x86-64 assembly generated also by GCC 4.3:

    movl    %r15d, %eax      # tmp = next_instr
    subl    76(%rsp), %eax   # tmp -= first_instr
    movl    $145, %ebp       # opcode = LIST_APPEND
    movl    %eax, 120(%r14)  # f->f_lasti = tmp
    movzbl  (%r15), %eax     # tmp = *next_instr
    addq    $1, %r15         # next_instr++
    movq    opcode_targets(,%rax,8), %rax  # tmp = opcode_targets[tmp]
    jmp     *%rax            # goto *tmp

The above assemblies are equivalent to the following C code:

    opcode = LIST_APPEND;
    f->f_lasti = ((int)(next_instr - first_instr));
    goto *opcode_targets[*next_instr++];

On the register-starved x86 architecture, the assembly has 4 stack load
and 1 store operations. While on the x86-64 architecture, most variables
are kept in registers thus it only uses 1 stack store operation. And
from what I saw from the assemblies, the extra registers with the
traditional switch dispatch aren't much used, especially with the opcode
prediction macros which avoid manipulations of f->f_lasti.

That said, I am glad to hear the patch makes Python on PowerPC faster,
because this supports the hypothesis that extra registers are better
used with indirect threading (PowerPC has 32 general-purpose registers).
Date User Action Args
2009-01-03 00:45:29alexandre.vassalottisetrecipients: + alexandre.vassalotti, lemburg, skip.montanaro, rhettinger, pitrou, christian.heimes, blaisorblade
2009-01-03 00:45:29alexandre.vassalottisetmessageid: <>
2009-01-03 00:45:28alexandre.vassalottilinkissue4753 messages
2009-01-03 00:45:27alexandre.vassalotticreate