CMSC 411, Spring 2012

Computer Systems Architecture


Important announcements related to the course will be posted here. Please check this page daily.

  • May 17 - Final exam scores have been posted on the grades server. Project 3 scores and final grades should be ready by Fri or Sat.

  • May 10 - Please enter your course evaluation by Friday May 11 here. Thanks!

  • May 10 Quiz 4 & solutions posted online here. Scores have been posted to grades server.

  • May 7 Fixed some typos for practice problem 6 (question 1 description), and example quiz 4 (solution to part D).

  • May 1 Project 2 deadline extended to Thu, May 3rd. Submit server now accepting Project 3 cache study writeups, due Fri, May 11th. Quiz 4 scheduled for Tue, May 8th. Quiz will cover multiprocessor cache coherence. Scores & solutions for Midterm 2 posted online here.

  • Apr 19 Quiz 3 scores posted on grades server. Solutions posted online here.

  • Apr 16 Posted additional sample quizzes & tests for Quiz 3 and Midterm 2 online here. Several questions from past midterm 2 materials may be useful for preparing for quiz 3.

  • Apr 16 Project 1 scores posted on grades server.

  • Apr 12 Midterm 2 scheduled for Thu, Apr 26th. Midterm will cover virtual memory, branch prediction, and dynamic instruction execution. Practice problems and sample tests available online here.

  • Apr 12 Project 2 posted, due Tue May 1st. Submit server up and ready for submissions.

  • Apr 12 Quiz 3 scheduled for Thu, Apr 19th. Quiz will cover virtual memory & branch prediction. Practice problems and sample quizzes available online here.

  • Mar 27 Midterm 1 scores posted on grades server.

  • Mar 14 Project 1 posted, due Tue Apr 10th.

  • Mar 5 Midterm 1 scheduled for Thu, Mar 8th. Midterm will cover material in Quiz 1 & 2, plus cache organization. Practice problems and sample midterms available online here.

  • Feb 27 Quiz 2 scheduled for Tue, Feb 28th. Quiz will cover basic pipelining. Practice problems and sample quizzes available online here.

  • Feb 13 Quiz 1 scheduled for Tue, Feb 14th. Quiz will cover reliability, performance, and Amdahl's Law. Practice problems and sample quizzes available online here.

  • Jan 31 Welcome to 411! Please note the course textbook is recommended, not required.


Name Office E-mail Office Hours
Chau-Wen Tseng AVW 4135 Tue & Thu 3:15-4:15pm
Chenglin Chen TA office Tue 3:30-4:30pm


Course Description Introduction to computer architecture. Topics include microprocessors, pipelining, memory hierarchies, and parallelism.
Location CSIC 3120, Tue & Thu 12:30-1:45pm
J. Hennessy and D. Patterson, Computer Architecture: A Quantitative Approach (4th Edition), Morgan Kaufmann, 2007
Acknowledgements Slides courtesy of Alan Sussman, Pete Keleher, et al.