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FRECOR Data storage in free core following user memory
Written by Ernie Petrides, Wesleyan University, January, 1979
FRECOR is a software package designed to handle the storage of
blocks of data in a dynamically allocated memory structure. The four
free-core operations are implemented as MACRO subroutines using the
standard PUSHJ/POPJ calling procedure. A block of contiguous memory
locations is put in safe keeping while the main program only needs to
save the storage address returned by the free-core subroutine. If no
longer needed, the entry may then be deleted and its space will be re-
claimed on future stores. Low segment storage as well as high segment
storage may be utilized, and the appropriate "first free" job data is
updated with dynamic core allocation independent of monitor buffering
or other core usages within the user's program.
Using the free-core routines
To use FRECOR, the user must "EXTERN" the required entry points
and execute the standard PUSHJ P,FC$XXX subroutine call where the stack
pointer P is accumulator 17 and XXX is the three-letter abbreviation of
the free-core routine. Arguments must be passed in accumulator 16 and
the user's stack should provide a usable depth of at least 12 levels.
It is illegal to store data from the user's accumulators.
The free-core routines never give skip returns and never type
error messages. If an error condition is detected, the address of the
ASCIZ error message is returned in the right half of AC 16 and a -1 is
returned in the left half. Programs should check for errors with a
"JUMPL 16,ERROR" instruction following the free-core subroutine call.
If sharable storage is desired, high segment free-core must be
used. If this is the case, the user must first un-write-protect the
high segment and then store data with the "SHR" routine. It should be
noted that some type of interlock must be employed to prevent a job from
modifying free-core while another is already in the process of doing so.
This responsibility is left up to the user's program.
Here is a list of the free-core routines with the specification
of the arguments passed in AC 16 followed by a brief description of the
functions of each routine. The return arguments are such provided there
has been no error condition (see error handling, above).
ROUTINE SENT RETURNED
SAV data length,,data address data length,,storage adr
SHR data length,,data address data length,,storage adr
DEL (ignored),,storage address 0,,size of deleted space
ZER do high core,,do low core deletions in high,,in low
SAV -- Save; puts the requested number of words starting at the specified
address into low segment free-core storage, expanding the low seg-
ment if necessary; possible errors: CEF,ISA,ZLD.
SHR -- Share; puts the requested number of words starting at the specified
address into high segment free-core storage, expanding the high seg-
ment if necessary; possible errors: CEF,ISA,ZLD.
DEL -- Delete; removes the specified entry from free-core storage and marks
the deleted space for reuse; possible errors: IDA.
ZER -- Zero; If the right half of AC 16 is non-zero, low segment free-core
is completely deleted contracting core down to the highest address
not used by free-core; the same is done for the high segment if the
left of AC 16 is non-zero; possible errors: DFZ.
These are the possible error message texts (no CRLF):
? FCRCEF Core expansion failure in free-core routines
? FCRISA Illegal to store from accumulator in free-core routines
? FCRZLD Attempt to store zero length data in free-core routines
? FCRIDA Illegal delete address in free-core routines
? FCRDFZ Internal delete failure on "zero" in free-core routines
Internal implementation of the free-core structure
An independent free-core structure is used for each of the low
and high segments. The choice of structures is made according to the
subroutine entry for stores and according to the storage address for
deletes (compared to .JBHGH). A free-core structure is essentially a
linked list where each node is a block of memory. The first word of
the block contains the length of the entry in the left half and the
address of the next node of the list in the right half. The rest of
the block comprises the actual data entry.
The free-core package reserves two memory locations, one for
each segment, which provide the initial node addresses of each free-core
structure. A value of zero indicates that the structure is not yet set
up. The names of these two locations are provided as global symbols in
case some kind of midstream "RESET" is necessary (which would require a
clear of the appropriate free-core pointer). The low segment free-core
pointer is "LFCP" and the high segment one is "HFCP", but the modifica-
tion of these pointers is not recommended.
Allocation of memory is completely dynamic, and deleted entry
space is reused if possible. On a delete operation, the data entry is
completely zeroed, and the entry length is negated. Next, a check is
made for backward concatenation so that contiguous deletions form one
combined entry (thereby gaining an extra data word and decreasing scan
overhead). The same check is then done for forward concatenation. The
size of the reclaimable entry space (after possible concatenation) is
what is returned in AC 16. If an entry whose size is less than that of
the deleted space is then inserted, a division is made and a new node is
created after the reused one with the negative number of remaining words
(possibly zero) entered as its data length.
On a zero operation, the specified free-core structure(s) is/are
deleted by repeatedly scanning the list (calling the delete routine and
restarting the scan if an undeleted entry is found) until all entries are
gone (and all possible concatenations have been made). Then a check is
made to see if the segment can be contracted. If the terminal free-core
entry is the last thing in core, it is entirely removed from the structure
and the "first free" is updated accordingly. If this new configuration
will fit in less core, a "CORE" UUO is executed to reduce the memory
requirement (errors in this case are ignored).
All of the user's accumulators (except for the argument passer)
are always preserved by each free-core subroutine.
End of FRECOR.DOC