Running M5 in Full-System Mode

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THIS IS AN OBSOLETE PAGE. DO NOT EDIT. See Running gem5 for the most recent version of this documentation.

Quick Start

We'll assume that you've already built an ALPHA_FS version of the M5 simulator, and downloaded and installed the full-system binary and disk image files. Then you can just run the configuration file in the m5/configs/examples directory. For example:

% build/ALPHA_FS/m5.debug -d /tmp/output configs/example/
M5 Simulator System

Copyright (c) 2001-2006
The Regents of The University of Michigan
All Rights Reserved

M5 compiled Aug 16 2006 18:51:57
M5 started Wed Aug 16 21:53:38 2006
M5 executing on zeep
command line: ./build/ALPHA_FS/m5.debug configs/example/
      0: Real-time clock set to Sun Jan  1 00:00:00 2006
Listening for console connection on port 3456
0: system.remote_gdb.listener: listening for remote gdb #0 on port 7000
warn: Entering event queue @ 0.  Starting simulation...
<...simulation continues...>

Basic Operation

By default, the script boots Linux and starts a shell on the system console. To keep console traffic separate from simulator input and output, this simulated console is associated with a TCP port. To interact with the console, you must connect to the port using a program such as telnet, for example:

 % telnet localhost 3456

Telnet's echo behavior doesn't work well with m5, so if you are using the console regularly, you probably want to use M5term instead of telnet. By default m5 will try to use port 3456, as in the example above. However, if that port is already in use, it will increment the port number until it finds a free one. The actual port number used is printed in the m5 output.

In addition to loading a Linux kernel, M5 mounts one or more disk images for its filesystems. At least one disk image must be mounted as the root filesystem. Any application binaries that you want to run must be present on these disk images. To begin running benchmarks without requiring an interactive shell session, M5 can load .rcS files that replace the normal Linux boot scripts to directly execute from after booting the OS. These .rcS files can be used to configure ethernet interfaces, execute special m5 instructions, or begin executing a binary on the disk image. The pointers for the linux binary, disk images, and .rcS files are all set in the simulation script. (To see how these files work, see Simulation Scripts Explained.) Examples: Going into / of root filesystem and typing ls will show:

  benchmarks  etc     lib         mnt      sbin  usr
  bin         floppy  lost+found  modules  sys   var
  dev         home    man         proc     tmp   z

Snippet of an .rcS file:

echo -n "setting up network..."
/sbin/ifconfig eth0 txqueuelen 1000
/sbin/ifconfig lo
echo -n "running surge client..."
/bin/bash -c "cd /benchmarks/surge && ./Surge 2 100 1 5.
echo -n "halting machine"
m5 exit

Full System Benchmarks

We have several full-system benchmarks already up and running. The binaries are available in the disk images you can obtain/download from us, and the .rcS files are in the m5/configs/boot/ directory. To run any of them, you merely need to set the benchmark option to the name of the test you want to run. For example:

%./build/ALPHA_FS/m5.opt  configs/example/ -b NetperfMaerts 

To see a comprehensive list of all benchmarks available:

%./build/ALPHA_FS/m5.opt configs/examples/ -h 

Not every benchmark is commonly used though, and not all are guaranteed to be useful or in working condition. However, we do often run:

  • NetperfMaerts
  • NetperfStreamNT
  • SurgeSpecweb

These should run without a problem, since we have flushed out most bugs.

Currently under development:

  • NFS
  • iSCSI
  • video streaming