IBM J. Res. Dev

Infrastructure requirements for a large-scale, multi-site VLSI development project

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This paper describes the design infrastructure and environment that were established to support the multi-site design of the IBM POWER4 microprocessor. The Common Tools Environment was created to provide a consistent means for accessing design tools and initiating operating system variables from multiple sites in a site-independent manner. The AIX® operating system and the Common Tools Environment masked local, site-specific details of the design environment, allowing site-specific design practices, shared storage, and information system policies to be transparently maintained. The design data-management system, the importance of highly reliable wide- and local-area networks, and the establishment of automated network monitoring are discussed.