A vision paper for Hyperion: CPU-free DPU is now available

Following up from our 2-page write-up that we discussed previously at Post-Moore Architectures (SPMA’22) in March’22, now the a more detailed write up on the vision is available at http://arxiv.org/abs/2205.08882 . This is still very much work in progress with my collaborators Marco Spaziani Brunella and Marco Bonola, but with a growing number of students as well.

Title: Hyperion: A Case for Unified, Self-Hosting, Zero-CPU Data-Processing Units (DPUs)

Authors: Marco Spaziani Brunella (University of Rome Tor Vergata, Axbryd), Marco Bonola (CNIT/Axbryd), Animesh Trivedi (VU, Amsterdam)

Abstract: Since the inception of computing, we have been reliant on CPU-powered architectures. However, today this reliance is challenged by manufacturing limitations (CMOS scaling), performance expectations (stalled clocks, Turing tax), and security concerns (microarchitectural attacks). To re-imagine our computing architecture, in this work we take a more radical but pragmatic approach and propose to eliminate the CPU with its design baggage, and integrate three primary pillars of computing, i.e., networking, storage, and computing, into a single, self-hosting, unified CPU-free Data Processing Unit (DPU) called Hyperion. In this paper, we present the case for Hyperion, its design choices, initial work-in-progress details, and seek feedback from the systems community.



This work is generously supported by the NWO grant number OCENW.XS3.030, Project Zero: Imagining a Brave CPU-free World!, and the Xilinx University Donation Program.

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