Supported Architectures

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M5 is a flexible architecture simulator that supports a number of ISAs and operating systems for both full-system simulation (booting an entire operating system) and syscall emulation (running one or more applications by emulating syscalls). A complete list of supported combinations is listed below.

Syscall Emulation

Modifying M5 to support additional ISAs in syscall emulation mode is far easier than for full-system simulation. As such all new architectures to-date have used syscall emulation as a stepping stone to full-system simulation.

  • ALPHA -- Tru64, Linux
  • SPARC -- Linux, Solaris
  • MIPS -- Linux
  • ARM -- Linux
  • x86/64 -- Linux

Note: Newer versions of Solaris do not support static linking so Solaris syscall emulation isn't used. Implementation of a dynamic linker in M5 (or M5 executing is possible, but it hasn't been implemented.

Full-System Simulation

  • ALPHA -- Linux, FreeBSD
  • SPARC -- Solaris
  • MIPS -- In progress, support nearly complete
  • ARM -- In progress, actively being worked on
  • x86/64 -- In progress, actively being worked on


  1. ARM support requires code distributed by FSU University available here.