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MicroTCA systems come with SUSE Linux

Sep 12, 2007 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 8 views

[Updated Sep. 26] — Embedded systems vendor GE Fanuc has announced a pair of MicroTCA servers that come pre-installed with SUSE Linux. The MP-2000 is a 2U rack-mounted model with 13 slots, while the MP-3000 is an 8U chassis with 15 slots.

GE Fanuc, the embedded systems division of General Electric, claims to have a “market-leading commitment” to MicroTCA. It says its two new MicroTCA servers come with a pre-validated SUSE Linux OS and “field-proven” IPMI (intelligent platform management interface) code, to ensure readiness for customer development efforts in telecom, military, and commercial markets.

MicroTCA is a smaller, lower-cost version of AdvancedTCA. Both are PICMG (PCI Industrial Computer Manufacturer's Group) specs aimed at boosting business efficiencies for telecom equipment manufacturers (TEMs), by letting them use off-the-shelf hardware and software — based on embedded PC architectures — to build interoperable devices.

MicroTCA's smaller size and lower cost are aimed at enabling its use not only in central office equipment, but also in cell towers and field offices. Thus, MicroTCA is expected to drive adoption of standards-based, modular systems in the telecom industry, according to an ABI Research study. ABI expects about a quarter of all UMTS (universal mobile telecom system) shipments to be based on AdvancedTCA and MicroTCA by 2010.

MP-2000 and MP-3000

Touted features of the MP-2000 and MP-3000 include:

  • Pre-configured with a power module (PM) that provides power conversion, management, and distribution
  • Dual cooling units (CUs)
  • MicroTCA carrier hub (MCH) with PCI Express fabric module
  • MicroTCA Carrier Management Controller (MCMC) provides low-level hardware management interface that controls the AdvancedMCs, PM, and CUs
  • Front-panel connector for direct serial console access to a command-line interface

Both MicroTCA systems support GE Fanuc's “Telum” family of AMC modules. The MP-2000 has four free AMC slots, while the MP-3000 offers seven; each slot on both systems supports full-size or compact AMCs. Both the MCH and PM support hot insertion and extraction of AMCs, the company said.

Supported Telum AMCs include:

  • Intel-based processor modules
  • Dual-port SATA storage modules
  • Multi-port Gigabit Ethernet I/O interface
  • VGA graphics modules

Additionally, customer-specific configurations, backplane routing, and chassis form-factors are available on request, the company said.

Rubin Dhillon, global director of communications products, stated, “MicroTCA is a strategic platform for us. These two platforms demonstrate our belief that MicroTCA is here now and ready to deliver substantial benefits.”

Pricing and availability details were not disclosed.

In other news, ATCA originator Intel earlier this week announced it would sell off its ATCA business to long-time partner Radisys.

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