Presented by

  • Paul Mackerras

    Paul Mackerras

    Paul has been hacking on the Linux kernel since 1996, when he ported Linux to run on his Power Macintosh. He was the Linux kernel maintainer for the PowerPC architecture from 2001 to 2007, and has worked in IBM's Linux Technology Center since 2001. More recently he has been working on KVM for the IBM Power servers and on the Microwatt Power architecture soft-core.


Microwatt is a new open-source soft-core implementation of the Power ISA written in VHDL. It has been developed from scratch in the last six months by Anton Blanchard and others, initially to provide an example implementation to accompany the announcement by IBM last August that it was opening the Power ISA. This talk will examine the microarchitecture of the Microwatt core in some detail and discuss how implementation choices were affected by the specific details of the Power ISA.