CXL

Integrates MAC IP to a broad range of PHY and SerDes IP

Overview

Compute Express Link (CXL) is a high-speed interface designed to enhance communication between CPUs, GPUs, memory, and other hardware accelerators. It aims to address the growing demand for higher performance, lower latency, and more efficient data processing in modern computing environments, particularly in data centers and AI/ML applications.

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Features

  • High bandwidth and low latency
  • Memory Coherency
  • Multiple Protocols
  • Backward Compatibility
  • Flexible Topology

CXL Protocols

  • CXL.io: Provides a standard I/O interface compatible with PCIe, handling traditional I/O operations such as configuration, interrupts, and DMA.
  • CXL.cache: Enables low-latency, cache-coherent memory accesses between the host CPU and accelerators. Allows devices to directly cache host memory, improving performance by reducing the need to access system memory through the I/O subsystem.
  • CXL.memory: Facilitates direct access to a device’s memory by the host CPU and other devices, enabling sharing of memory resources and allowing more flexible and efficient use of memory across the system.

CXL Layers

  • Physical Layer: Uses the same physical and electrical interface as PCIe. Supports high data rates leveraging the advanced signalling techniques of PCIe.
  • Link Layer: Manages data integrity, error correction, and flow control to ensure reliable data transmission.
  • Protocol Layer: Handles traditional PCIe-based communication for configuration and I/O operations (CXL.io), manages cache coherence (CXL.cache), and memory access/sharing (CXL.memory).

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