Chapter 9. INTERRUPTS

The fetch-execute cycle is a program-driven model of computation. But computers are not totally program driven. To some extent they are hardware driven. CPUs are equipped with input signal pins which allow the fetch-execute cycle to be interrupted. The original purpose of these pins was to increase processor efficiency by reducing the amount of time spent in communication with I/O devices.

In chapter 8 we saw how a device to increase memory efficiency was adopted as a device for controlling memory access. Interrupts have undergone a similar transition. This chapter begins by describing how interrupts economize on processor time. Then, starting with section 9.6, we will see how interrupts are used to control processor access. ...

Get Linux Assembly Language Programming now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.