MIPS Pipeline Execution

Explore pipeline execution in MIPS (Microprocessor without Interlocked Pipelined Stages)

180 Participants 30 Minutes Beginner

In this lab, we will explore the fundamentals of a MIPS pipeline, a crucial concept in computer architecture and processor design. Understanding the MIPS pipeline is essential for computer science and electrical engineering students and anyone interested in how modern processors execute instructions efficiently.




What is Pipelining?:

Pipelining is a CPU architecture design that allows for the concurrent execution of multiple instructions. It breaks down the instruction execution process into stages, with each stage processing a different aspect of the instruction.


How Pipelining Works

In our program, we have multiple instructions in a sequence.

  1. Pipelining allows these instructions to be processed concurrently in different stages.
  2. Each stage completes its task and passes the instruction to the next stage, allowing multiple instructions to move through the pipeline simultaneously.


Introduction to MIPS Pipeline

The MIPS (Microprocessor without Interlocked Pipeline Stages) pipeline is a Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC) architecture. It breaks down the execution of instructions into multiple stages, allowing multiple instructions to be in different stages simultaneously. This enhances the overall performance of the CPU by reducing the time it takes to execute instructions.


Stages of the MIPS Pipeline

The MIPS pipeline typically consists of five stages:

Instruction Fetch (IF): Fetches the instruction from memory.

Instruction Decode (ID): Decodes the instruction and reads register values.

Execution (EX): Performs arithmetic and logic operations.

Memory Access (MEM): Reads or writes data to memory.

Write-back (WB): Writes results back to registers.

Each stage is responsible for a specific task in instruction execution.


MIPS Pipeline Hazards

Pipeline hazards are situations where the pipeline cannot proceed as planned due to various reasons. The three main types of hazards are:

1. Structural Hazards: Conflicts in resource access, such as when two instructions require the same resource simultaneously.

2. Data Hazards: Dependencies on previous instructions, causing delays.


Advantages of Pipelining:

1. Pipelining allows for better resource utilization and improved performance.

2. Multiple instructions can be in different stages of execution simultaneously, reducing idle time.



Understanding the MIPS pipeline is fundamental for anyone interested in computer architecture and processor design. The pipeline concept plays a vital role in modern processor efficiency, and knowledge of its stages, hazards, and mitigation techniques is essential for optimising processor performance.

MIPS Pipeline Execution


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