Dynamic Power Management for Embedded Systems

The IBM Low-Power Computing Research Center, IBM Linux® Technology Center and MontaVistaTM Software are currently developing a general and flexible dynamic power management architecture for embedded systems. The proposal covered in this paper is primarily concerned with the power management implications of dynamic scaling. Several research and production implementations of processor voltage and frequency scaling exist; however, our proposal augments the capabilities of these systems in several important ways. Dynamic power management is still a very active area of research, and research efforts have typically been targeted to investigate a particular strategy or optimization. Production implementations dictate a more or less fixed power management policy. This proposal attempts to standardize a dynamic power management and policy framework that will support different power management strategies, either under control of operating system components or user-level policy managers. The flexible framework proposed here will help enable the excellent research being done in this area to find its way into a wider range of commercial products.

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