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14.1. Multi-processing systems

We can distinguish between systems that contain:

  • A single processor containing a single core.

  • A multi-core processor, such as the Cortex-A53, with several cores capable of independent instruction execution, and can be externally viewed as a single unit or cluster, either by the system designer or by an operating system that can abstract the underlying resources from the application layer.

  • Multiple clusters (such as that shown in Figure 14.1), in which each cluster contains multiple cores.

The descriptions of multi-processing systems which follow define terms as they are used in this book. On other operating systems they may have different meanings.

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