ioapic(4) - NetBSD Manual Pages

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APIC(4)               NetBSD/x86 Kernel Interfaces Manual              APIC(4)

apic, ioapic, lapic -- Intel APIC Architecture
ioapic* at mainbus*
The apic subsystem provides basis for a system of advanced programmable interrupt controllers (APICs) originally designed by Intel but now widely used on all x86 systems. There are two elements in the architecture, the local APIC (LAPIC) and the I/O APIC. Historically these were connected by a dedicated 3-wire ``APIC bus'', but the system bus is used for communication today. The configuration is increasingly dependent on ACPI. Typically each CPU in the system contains one LAPIC that performs two primary functions: 1. It receives interrupts both from internal sources and from the external I/O APIC. The interrupt sources include I/O devices, the programmable APIC timer, performance monitoring counters, thermal sensor interrupts, and others. 2. In multiprocessor (MP) systems a LAPIC receives and sends interprocessor interrupts (IPIs) from and to other processors in the system. IPIs are used to provide software interrupts, interrupt forwarding, or preemptive scheduling. Against this, the architecture can be generally seen as an attempt to solve the interrupt routing efficiency issues in MP systems. There is typically one I/O APIC for each peripheral bus in the system. Each I/O APIC has a series of interrupt inputs to external interrupt sources. The architecture usually contains a redirection table which can be used to route the interrupts that an I/O APIC receives to one or more local APICs. When a LAPIC is able to accept an interrupt, it will signal the CPU. Without an I/O APIC, the local APICs are therefore mostly use- less; one of the primary functions of the architecture is no longer achievable, interrupts can not be distributed to different CPUs. The 8259 PIC has coexisted with the architecture since its introduction. It is still possible to disable the APIC system and revert back to a 8259-compatible PIC. But the widespread use of MP systems has made this mainly a fallback option.
acpi(4), mainbus(4), x86/ichlpcib(4) Intel Corporation, Intel 64 and IA-32 Architectures Software Developer's Manual, Volume 3A: System Programming Guide, Part 1,, Chapter 10, January, 2011. Intel Corporation, Intel 82093AA I/O Advanced Programmable Interrupt Controller (I/O APIC) Datasheet,, May, 1996. Intel Corporation, 8259A, Programmable Interrupt Controller,, December, 1988. John Baldwin, PCI Interrupts for x86 Machines under FreeBSD,, May 18-19, 2007, Proceedings of BSDCan 2007. Microsoft Corporation, PCI IRQ Routing on a Multiprocessor ACPI System,, December 4, 2001.
Authors of the NetBSD implementation of the Intel APIC Architecture include Andrew Doran, Bill Sommerfeld, Frank van der Linden, and Stefan Grefen, among others. The older 8259 PIC implementation is based on the work of William Jolitz. NetBSD 9.2 February 17, 2017 NetBSD 9.2
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