Translation Lookaside Buffers TLB

Besides general-purpose hardware caches, 80 x 86 processors include other caches called Translation Lookaside Buffers (TLB) to speed up linear address translation. When a linear address is used for the first time, the corresponding physical address is computed through slow accesses to the Page Tables in RAM. The physical address is then stored in a TLB entry so that further references to the same linear address can be quickly translated.

In a multiprocessor system, each CPU has its own TLB, called the local TLB of the CPU. Contrary to the L1 cache, the corresponding entries of the TLB need not be synchronized because processes running on the existing CPUs may associate the same linear address with different physical ones.

When the cr3 control register of a CPU is modified, the hardware automatically invalidates all entries of the local TLB.

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