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I googled deeply but couldn't find any cpu constructor simulator. I'm specifically hoping to learn about the operation of the northbridge, but When I googled "bridge simulator" or "bridge (the construction game)" is the result.

I don't want to simulate existing architectures. İ need to create my own.

Question: Do you know any free project (ideally C++) with this flexibility:

  • Place ALUs, FPUs, etc arbitrarily
  • Make the instruction fetcher width 8 bytes
  • Allows operation with an arbitrary set of components (E.G, build a system that doesn't utilize L2/L3 cache)
  • Designate instruction pipeline length
  • Run the simulated hardware at various frequencies
  • Can simulate a GPU (or GPUs)

Is there a utility that would allow me to experiment with hardware design in a click-and-drag CAD manner? If there isn't, how complicated would it be to make such a simulator for 8-bit systems?

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    \$\begingroup\$ I answered a similar question a little while ago, have a read and see if it helps at all. \$\endgroup\$ – Oli Glaser Aug 17 '12 at 16:35
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    \$\begingroup\$ You want to learn an HDL (Hardware Description Language), like VHDL or Verilog. FPGA vendors have development tools for their products, often free up to a certain level, which includes simulation. Doing this in C++ is next to insane. \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh Aug 17 '12 at 16:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ Okay, looking to these sources and questions \$\endgroup\$ – huseyin tugrul buyukisik Aug 17 '12 at 16:37
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    \$\begingroup\$ "northbridge" is a component of a specific system architecture which would likely be irrelevant to a custom CPU. You will likely have more luck starting small with a simple, unoptimized design. First write something in C or your favorite language which simulates the instruction set and which you can later use as a verification check, then implement it in an HDL such as Verilog or VHDL. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Aug 17 '12 at 16:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ @tuğrul - "Trying to register verilog now". Don't tell us everything you do. This isn't twitter! \$\endgroup\$ – stevenvh Aug 17 '12 at 17:34
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Based on your question, I believe writing a simulator for 8-bit systems would be over your head.

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