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Lecture_7 - ECE 445 Computer Organization The Frame Pointer...

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ECE 445 – Computer Organization The Frame Pointer and The Heap (Lecture #7)
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ECE 445 - Computer Organization 2 Some Basic Definitions Stack Pointer - A value denoting the most recently allocated address in a stack that shows where registers should be spilled or where old register values can be found. Frame Pointer - A value denoting the location of the saved registers and local variables for a given procedure. Procedure Frame (aka. Activation Record) - The segment of the stack containing a procedure's saved registers and local variables. Caller: A program or function that calls a procedure Callee: The procedure that is called
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ECE 445 - Computer Organization 3 Frame Pointer The frame pointer points to the highest address in the procedure frame (or activation record). The frame pointer remains fixed at this memory location for the duration of the procedure. - Whereas, the stack pointer moves each time an element is added to or removed from the stack. The frame pointer must be preserved across procedure calls. See MIPS Reference Card
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ECE 445 - Computer Organization 4 Stack Allocation and the Frame Pointer Local data – stack space allocated by the called procedure stack allocation when a procedure is called before procedure call after procedure call $fp points to the highest address of the procedure frame $sp points to the “top” of the stack
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ECE 445 - Computer Organization 5 Example: Main calls CalculateF
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