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Computer System Architecture [Paperback]

M. Morris Mano
2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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Computer System Architecture (3rd Edition) Computer System Architecture (3rd Edition) 2.9 out of 5 stars (28)
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Book Description

April 1983 0131666371 978-0131666375 2nd

Dealing with computer architecture as well as computer organization and design, this fully updated book provides the basic knowledge necessary to understand the hardware operation of digital computers. Written to aid electrical engineers, computer engineers, and computer scientists, the volume includes: KEY FEATURES: the computer architecture, organization, and design associated with computer hardware • the various digital components used in the organization and design of digital computers • detailed steps that a designer must go through in order to design an elementary basic computer • the organization and architecture of the central processing unit • the organization and architecture of input-output and memory • the concept of multiprocessing • two new chapters on pipeline and vector processing • two sections devoted completely to the reduced instruction set computer (RISC) • and sample worked-out problems to clarify topics.

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Focused primarily on hardware design and organization -- and the impact of software on the architecture -- this volume first covers the basic organization, design, and programming of a simple digital computer, then explores the separate functional units in detail. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

Focused primarily on hardware design and organization — and the impact of software on the architecture — this volume first covers the basic organization, design, and programming of a simple digital computer, then explores the separate functional units in detail.


  • develops an elementary computer to demonstrate by example the organization and design of digital computers.
  • uses a simple register transfer language to specify various computer operations.
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice-Hall; 2nd edition (April 1983)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0131666371
  • ISBN-13: 978-0131666375
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.9 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,020,877 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
I refer to the latest edition of this text by Mano and Kime. I tried to teach Comp. Architecture to a senior level BS class (in CS) from this book. The problem is that this book attempts to do too much and it wanders all over the subject area, leaving the students lost since they just cannot grasp the "big picture". This book gets progressively worse with every new edition! I had to extensively edit the contents to prepare lecture notes which could be comprehended. Halfway through the semester, when I came to the part on "microprogrammed control", I gave up and switched to Tanenbaum (Structured Comp Organization) instead. I would appreciate it if anyone could tell me about a better book on this subject. All the ones that I have looked at seem to be terrible in one way or another.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice and Simpe Introductory Book June 16, 2004
By Bernd
I have three of M. Mano's books and this one is the one I've liked the most. I found the author's exposition of the material good on average. I'm using this book for self-study. The book provides a nice overview of computer architecture by focusing on the basic concepts in manner that is not dependent on a particular real-life architecture.
I must say however that I gotten up to chapter 11 and have become totally unmotivated to finish the book (only two chapters left). I've gone through most of the interesting problems of each chapter but have no clue to the 'correctness' of some of them since the book doesn't come with solutions.
One thing that I really dislike about a book is the lack of an errata sheet. All of Mano's books I own lack an errata sheet. I've noticed some errors in the book although nothing major.
Recommendation: As far as I know there are no really good books in the area of computer architecture. If you're looking for a simple introductory book on computer architecture, I would recommend this book. Avoid this book if you're looking for a more technical treatment on the subject.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Would give it 2 1/2 stars if I could October 5, 2007
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book isn't really all that bad, the problem is that it can be confusing to some readers. Instead of giving a list of problems, I am going to go into some detail about one specific thing wrong with the book, which could be a BIG problem for some readers. It is this:

It seems like once or twice every couple paragraphs, Mano will give a one-sentence explanation or description of something; and then a sentence or two later in the same paragraph, he will attempt to make the same point again but by rewording and rearranging the original sentence. I found this so incredibly distracting that I could not finish the book. I think Mano is doing this, i.e. repeating himself, to embed a concept into the student's mind. Not a bad idea, but it is poorly implemented by Mano...

what was so distracting about this, is that even if the reader feels he understands the concept the first time it is presented, when he then reads the reworded version, the tendency is to say "hey, wait a minute, is this the same thing he said before, or do the two statements conflict? or is it new information? Or did I not understand the first time??" So then I, at least, would go back and reread the first statement, then again compare it to the second, until I was able to answer these questions for myself. So it really slowed down my reading. I don't know, maybe it's just the way I read.

I should mention that I was mainly trying to learn from the book by self-study, i.e. no professor, although I did take a microprocessors course about 15 years ago.

Well, I guess I was verbose :-> but I wanted to inform so that anyone who thinks that they also will be distracted by this, buy a different book (like Rafiquzzaman)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nothign Exceptional, but not bad either September 18, 2000
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is not very hard to follow if you dive down into it. Everything presented is presented in an easy to understand, clear way. The exercises and hypothetical computer architecture gets a little annoying, why learn a language that doesn't exist when there are hundreds out there that could actually be used for something other than a course in hardware?
The problems are several. First of all, the author leaves many many avenues of obvious questions unexplored. This is a nice introduction to hardware, but it really doesn't get into much detail on some of the more complex areas such as ALU design. In keeping with his "skimming the surface" paradigm, the exercises at the end of the chapter are trivial to say the least. They will not challenge you if you were even remotely attentive while reading.
The book isn't the worst out there, but I'm sure there are better.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book to learn about the innards of a CPU October 11, 2003
By A Customer
It's hard for me to believe this book didn't get good reviews. It's an awesome book that succintly details the design of a CPU. The author uses a hands on approach by showing you how to design a simple CPU from scratch. Even though simple, this CPU has a useable set of instructions (including IO ones), interrupts, and a memory subsytem. RTL is used to convey what is done at each instruction cyle, which is great. For me, this is the first time
I see a practical application of RTL. The book could have been more interesting if it provides an implementation in VHDL, or Verilog, but i guess that's left as an excercise for the reader.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Very frustrating...
Like almost all other reviewers of this book I must say this is an awful book to learn from. If you are taking a class from a teacher who is teaching from this book that will tell... Read more
Published 7 months ago by wunjo
4.0 out of 5 stars Good
The condition of the book was really good and support from supplier was also admirable. We can rely on the supplier of this book. This trading and purchase was easy and beneficial.
Published 8 months ago by Kristina
1.0 out of 5 stars The book is the problem
Explains everything in a convoluted way. You'll learn very little from this book. While doing a problem in class, my professor told me outright that the book WOULD NOT HELP. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Spike Man
1.0 out of 5 stars Confusing
He gives poor explanation (if any is given) for the graphical examples. The textual description of a process- whether it is a flowchart or arithmetic example- does not usually... Read more
Published 15 months ago by homeworkMike
5.0 out of 5 stars Just what I needed
The book comes at a good deal, better than buying it at the school bookstore. It does the job that it is intended to, and gets you through the course you are taking.
Published on October 13, 2010 by Brown Dragon
3.0 out of 5 stars content ok, binding horrible
I'm currently using this book in a class on computer organization that basically goes through the whole book. Read more
Published on August 5, 2010 by Shang-Lin
3.0 out of 5 stars Misleading description of the book status
The book was described as brand new. However, I received an email after the book was shipped apologizing for some highlights within the book pages. Read more
Published on April 15, 2010 by Hisham Haddara
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Amazon Customer Service
This review concerns's customer service, not specifically this book. I rated it 3-stars only because that's the current average. Read more
Published on January 12, 2010 by Joe Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good for an introductory course
I had this text for a course more than a decade ago. I found everything very easy to understand and still refer to the book when I want to know something about computer... Read more
Published on August 4, 2007 by mlc178
2.0 out of 5 stars Horrible book or just hard material?
I don't know, but this book was not very useful to me.
Published on December 26, 2006 by LE
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