A system and method for managing a functional unit in a system using a data movement engine. An exemplary system may comprise a CPU coupled to a memory controller. The memory controller may include or couple to a data movement engine (DME). The memory controller may in turn couple to a system memory or other device which includes at least one functional unit. The DME may operate to transfer data to/from the system memory and/or the functional unit, as described herein. In one embodiment, the DME may also include multiple DME channels or multiple DME contexts. The DME may operate to direct the functional unit to perform operations on data in the system memory. For example, the DME may read source data from the system memory, the DME may then write the source data to the functional unit, the functional unit may operate on the data to produce modified data, the DME may then read the modified data from the functional unit, and the DME may then write the modified data to a destination in the system memory. Thus the DME may direct the functional unit to perform an operation on data in system memory using four data movement operations. The DME may also perform various other data movement operations in the computer system, e.g., data movement operations that are not involved with operation of the functional unit.

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