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Linux tools vendor joins Moblin

Mar 3, 2009 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

MontaVista today announced it was supporting the Intel-sponsored Moblin open-source community, which develops the Linux-based Moblin stack for Intel-Atom-based embedded devices. The announcement appears to be tied to an upcoming release of MontaVista Linux for Intel Atom, which will be available in mid-March, according to the company.

MontaVista had few details on its support for the Moblin stack. The MontaVista for Moblin platform will address a “very broad range” of embedded applications including “multimedia entertainment devices, industrial devices with extended life-time and temperature requirements, and green consumer electronics,” says MontaVista. The only other clue MontaVista is offering for early action on its Moblin implementation is a statement from a game machine vendor, Videomail Japan, which is apparently using MontaVista with Moblin (see farther below).

MontaVista recently announced a “Montabello” mobile Internet device (MID) stack that is targeted initially at an ARM Cortex-A8 platform instead of at the x86-based Atom. An x86 port was said to be planned for later in the year.

Moblin on the move

Moblin is now being offered in an Alpha-stage V2 release for netbooks, due in Beta this Spring. A V2 for MIDs is due next year with the release of the “Moorestown” successor to the Atom processor. The existing V1 version of Moblin is targeted primarily at MIDs, but the focus appears to be moving toward netbooks and other platforms, including automotive infotainment.

Last April, when Intel unveiled the first Z5xx Atom processors, MontaVista announced the availability of an optimized MontaVista Linux release for the platform that boasted programmable power management for long battery life, 802.11n WiFi, Bluetooth, and fast boot for speedy device start-up. The mid March release is likely to add support for the Moblin stack, and perhaps Moblin V2 for Netbook support, as well. It is also likely to support newer versions of the Intel Atom processor that have appeared over the last year, including, possibly, the new “P” and “PT” Atom varieties that Intel announced yesterday. These larger-format Atom parts are designed for the automotive and transportation industries.

MontaVista rival Wind River was a fairly early Moblin supporter, announcing an automotive stack for Moblin last May, and then the following month announcing a MID Platform that leverages software and tools developed by the Intel-sponsored Moblin project. Its Wind River Platform for Automotive Infotainment is being used on an Intel Atom platform for a new automotive infotainment alliance among car manufacturers and suppliers called the Genivi Alliance.

Stated Jyoji Usami, President of Videomail Japan, Inc., “Intel's Atom architecture and MontaVista Linux based on Moblin is the best combination for our high-performance, multimedia gaming machine platform EX6. MontaVista's commercial quality and support combined with access to the Atom and Moblin ecosystem allow us to bring a highly differentiated gaming platform to market very quickly.”

Stated Joerg Bertholdt, VP of Marketing at MontaVista, “We are excited to be part of the Moblin community. It offers compatibility with existing and future x86 development environments and tools allowing reuse of existing, mature development infrastructure. By delivering MontaVista's embedded Linux commercialization based on Moblin, device manufacturers can bring commercial devices to market quickly and cost effectively.”


The Moblin-ready MontaVista Linux for Intel Atom distribution will be available in mid-March, says the company.

In other recent MontaVista news, the company today announced a new “Meld” online community for embedded Linux developers.

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