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Linux-friendly microkernel embraces PowerPC 440

Mar 29, 2007 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

German embedded Linux specialist Sysgo reports that its POSIX PSE51 compliant real-time microkernel now supports AMCC's PowerPC 440-series processors, which target networking, storage, and pervasive computing devices. The PikeOS microkernel's 440-series support means that Sysgo's paravirtualized, real-time-enabled “industrial Linux” distribution now supports AMCC's entire 400-series PowerPC… processor line, the company said.

PikeOS is a “partition microkernel” that can run various operating systems and runtime environments within secure partitions. Supported environments include Linux, POSIX, ARINC 653, Java, VxWorks, and Ada.

PikeOS also meets the POSIX PSE51 profile for single-process, multi-threaded RTOSes, and thus can run high-throughput real-time applications, such as protocol stacks, in isolation from other system components, according to Sysgo.

Together, these capabilities enable PikeOS to support “a combination of legacy software and new software, all running on one CPU,” Sysgo said. Inter-partition communication is possible, but partitions can not corrupt one another, according to the company.

Sysgo shipped PikeOS about two years ago, followed last October by the release of an integrated ELinOS Real-time distribution that combined PikeOS with Linux. The company last year said it expected to grow 50 percent, thanks to PikeOS.

AMCC purchased its PowerPC 400-series processors from IBM in April of 2004. Its 440-series processors include:

  • 440SPe — for RAID and SAN controllers
  • 440GX — for networking and storage devices
  • 440GR — for storage and networking control
  • 440EPx — for networking and pervasive computing applications
  • 440EP — for imaging and industrial applications

Charlie Ashton, AMCC's director of software, stated, “With its virtualization technology and high level of security, PikeOS offers the user a powerful, modern and more versatile operating system paradigm for real-time applications.”


PikeOS and ELinos Real-time appear to be available now for AMCC's 440-series processors. Pricing was not disclosed.

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