Define the instruction set. How does a CPU instruction cycle work?

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An instruction is a set of codes that the computer processor can understand. The code is usually in 1s and 0s, or machine language. It contains instructions or tasks that control the movement of bits and bytes within the processor.

Example of some instruction sets −

  • ADD − Add two numbers together.
  • JUMP − Jump to the designated RAM address.
  • LOAD − Load information from RAM to the CPU.

CPU Instruction Cycle:

The steps performed by the computer processor for each machine language instruction received. The machine cycle is a four-process cycle that includes reading and interpreting the machine language, executing the code, and then storing that code.

Four steps of the machine cycle:

  1. Fetch – Retrieve an instruction from memory.
  2. Decode – Translate the retrieved instruction into computer commands.
  3. Execute – Execute the computer commands.
  4. Store – Send and write the results back in memory.
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