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9th RTL Workshop: Exploiting the hard realtime features of PROFINET by a real-time capable Linux

Nov 20, 2000 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive

A PROFINET system built out of ERTEC Switch ASICs allows to keep the nodes of a network synchronized with an accuracy below 1sec. While still allowing regular IP communication, it also guarantees the timely arrival of cyclic messages below that mark. These features are particularly required for the motion control part of automation systems.

The talk starts with browsing through the essentials of PROFINET and the ERTEC ASIC which provide the real time capabilities. When connecting such an Ethernet controller as the ERTEC to a host processor, the hardware interfaces also have a significant impact on the real time behavior. These issues are discussed. Then all the measures for providing the best possible real time response for a Linux user level program are presented. This includes the basic features of the chosen two-kernel approach as well as the functional enhancements necessary for meeting the specific requirements of drive control applications. Finally, the achieved performance data are presented.

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