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Dev board targets low-power secure networking devices

May 26, 2004 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 4 views

AMD is shipping a development board for the Alchemy Au1550 network security processor. The DBAu1550 board targets developers of low-powered network access devices with integrated security, such as gateways, network attached storage (NAS) units, wireless access points, and voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) devices.

(Click for larger view of DBAu1550 development board)

The Au1550 chip

The Au1550 processor is the newest in AMD's Alchemy embedded processor line. The MIPS-based system-on-chip (SoC) draws only half a watt, and features configurable security features licensed as intellectual property from SafeNet. AMD says that SafeNet's CGX Mobile Library enables processor customers to design security solutions with multiple price-performance options, using the same software application-programming interface (API).

Advanced security features in the Au1550 include implementations of “the entire VPN packet protocol” in hardware, support for both IPsec and SSL VPNs, the capability of sustaining “unlimited VPN tunnels sumultaneously,” and a True Random Number Generator (RNG). Low power requirements enable the processor to support battery and Power Over Ethernet (PoE) applications.

The DBAu1550 development board

The DBAu1550 development board brings processor, memory, and peripherals together on a single board, along with debugging assist features and software. AMD lists the following features for the board:

  • Memory devices
    • 192MB of 200MHz DDR-400
    • 128MB MirrorBit technology Flash memory (Am29LV256)
      • 64MB Boot Flash memory
      • 64MB Parameter Flash memory
  • Expansion
    • Two hot-swappable PCMCIA slots
    • Static memory interface connector
    • IDE ATA/133 connector
    • Two 3.3V/PCI connectors
  • Debug assist features
    • YAMON monitor/debugger
    • EJTAG connection to Au1550 processor
    • Test points for key signals
    • LEDs for easy notification of system activity
    • Bank of 7-segment LEDs for software status
    • User-settable switches
  • On-board peripherals
    • Two AMD 10/100 Ethernet PHYs (Am79C874VC)
    • USB host port with On-The-Go
    • USB device port
    • AC'97 audio CODEC stereo
    • Two serial ports
    • SMBUS
      • Temperature and Voltage Monitor
      • Serial EEPROM
    • SPI BUS
      • Spansion SPI Flash memory
      • Temperature Sensor
    • PCI-ATA/133 controller
    • I2S Audio CODEC
  • Software included
    • YAMON monitor/debugger in Flash memory
      • Assembly/disassembly
      • Memory modify/display
      • Register modify/display
      • S-record, download via serial and Ethernet
    • Quick Start
    • Peripheral initialization routines
    • Diagnostics
    • Example code
    • Development tools
    • Microsoft Windows CE .NET, VxWorks, embedded Linux demonstration images
    • SafeNet CGX Mobile Cryptographic Library
  • System documentation
    • User's guide
    • Hardware datasheets
    • Complete set of hardware design files, including schematics, layout, and BOM

“Using the DBAu1550 kit, developers have a feature rich board for the development of integrated networking and security functionality on high-performance, low-power secure hardware,” said AMD Marketing Director Erik Salo.

Pricing and Availability

The DBAu1550 development board kit is available now for $1,995 from AMD and its distributors.

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