Computer Science Department
School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University


Programmer Specified Pointer Independence

David Koes, Mihai Budiu, Girish Venkataramani, Seth Copen Goldstein

April 2003

Keywords: Compilers, pointer analysis, user annotations

Good alias analysis is essential in order to achieve high performance on modern processors, yet interproce-dural analysis does not scale well. We present a source code annotation, #pragma independent, which is a more flexible, intuitive and useful way for the programmer to provide pointer aliasing information than the current C99 restrict keyword. We describe a tool which highlights the most important and most likely correct locations at which a programmer can insert the pragmas. We show that such annotations can be used effectively in compilers to achieve speedups of up to 1.2x.

14 pages

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