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New commercial toolsuite targets real-time, SMP embedded Linux

Sep 22, 2005 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 9 views

A systems integrator specializing in real-time and mission-critical systems has entered the Linux development tools market. Concurrent is now shipping NightStar, a suite of development and debugging tools aimed at multi-processor, multi-threaded, real-time application and kernel development on Red Hat… Linux.

Concurrent claims that its NightStar tools have long been used by “some of the largest automotive, aerospace, and defense companies globally.” They have not previously been available separately from the company's RedHawk Linux offering, however.

NightStar LX toolsuite

In addition to supporting RedHawk, Concurrent's standalone NightStar LX toolsuite now supports generic Red Hat Linux, it says. Key features, according to the company, include:

RedHawk Linux

Concurrent's RedHawk Linux operating system is based on a standard Red Hat Linux distribution, with the addition of a Concurrent-enhanced 2.6-series symmetric multiprocessing (SMP) Linux kernel derived from sources. The RedHawk kernel supports “per CPU shielding,” among other real-time enhancements. CPU shielding allows a user-space application to essentially have its own processor, guaranteeing response times to external events of less than 30 microseconds, the company claims.

Although originally developed for use with the company's own iHawk multiprocessor systems, RedHawk has recently become available to OEMs as a standalone real-time Linux OS, according to director of real-time marketing Gary Beerman. Beerman said additional announcements relating to the availability of standalone RedHawk are expected in October.

COO Warren Neuburger said, “NightStar tools have demonstrated high value to software developers worldwide as an efficient tool set for applications development, particularly for those requiring multiprocessor or multithreaded performance.”

VDC's embedded software analyst, Stephen Balacco, said, “Today, Linux is the fastest growing segment in computer operating systems, growing more than 22 percent a year. In the embedded software market, Linux continues to gain momentum. Concurrent is entering a marketplace ripe for tool kits and continued growth.”

A number of market research surveys over the past three years have identified tools as an area of opportunity in the embedded Linux market. See the list of Related Stories below for more details.

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