Associated complexity of wide application

In the early days of embedded Linux development (circa Y2K), a significant part of the embedded computer was to port the open source code to run on the hardware platform being targeted. Unless engineers were running code on an Intel x86 board, it was not a trivial effort to develop the embedded computer and cross-compile the open source middleware to run on the hardware. In the years since, an increasing number of hardware companies have discovered that providing free Linux BSPs is necessary to ensuring the wide adoption of their hardware into embedded applications. Whereas in the early days it might have taken weeks or months to get to a Linux shell prompt over a console port, these days it should only take a few hours.

refer to: http://embedded-computing.com/articles/the-not-code-quality/

Remote tele-health advancements

This is just one example of why telehealth strategies are poised solutions to revolutionize medicine. Telehealth not only provides quick access to specialists, but can also remotely monitor patients and reduce clinical expenses. Many of the systems needed to realize these benefits will operate on the edge, and require technology with the portability and price point of commercial mobile platforms, as well as the flexibility to perform multiple functions securely and in real time. All of this must be provided in a package that can meet the rigors of certification and scale over long lifecycle deployments.

The ability to transition between x86 and ARM processors is critical for low-volume medical applications because a single carrier board solutions – often the most costly component of a COM architecture – can suit the needs of both graphics-intensive systems and platforms that require more mobility and lower power. In addition to reducing Time-To-Market (TTM), this decreases Bill Of Materials (BOM) costs and eases Board Support Package (BSP) implementation, says Christoph Budelmann, General Manager, Budelmann Elektronik GmbH in Münster, Germany (www.budelmann-elektronik.com).

refer to: http://smallformfactors.com/articles/qseven-coms-healthcare-mobile/

Embedded computers are just alright

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

“Back in the 2005 timeframe, Northrop Grumman had hundreds of data centers and consolidated them down to five data centers in 2011,” says Joe Cloyd, Director of Technology, Defense Cyber Security and Enterprise Services at Northrop Grumman (www.northropgrumman.com). “In our next round of Embedded Computer consolidation we will go down to three enterprise data centers. The DoD will eventually do this as well, consolidating each respective network, and far down the road of embedded computer a totally segregated approach to having multiple networks with duplication.”

 

refer to : http://mil-embedded.com/articles/cloud-security-the-dod/

 

Brand New Rackmount 1U Networking Appliance System with 3rd generation Intel Core i processor

 

ANR-IB751N1/A/B networking appliances.

 

 

ANR-IB75N1/A/B is a rackmount platform (440x372x44mm) which can be installed in the 19” rack. It can carry a 3rd generation Intel Core i i3, i5, i7, or Pentium processors to deliver higher efficiency, increased processing throughput, and improved performance on applications. ANR-IB75N1/A/B also comes equipped with a maximum 16GB DDR3 memory and optional 2 or 4 x SFP and 8 x LAN ports. System Integrators can select different configurations for their network appliances. It offers the best P/P ratio in applications like the UTM, IDS/IPS, VPN, Firewall, Anti-Virus, Anti-Spam, RSA gateway, QoS, streaming.

ANR-IB75N1/A/B uses 80 Plus PSU which reduces energy consumption and helps protect the environment. The software and hardware configurable LAN bypass feature also prevents communication breaks due to power loss or system hang-ups. In addition to Intel long life support chipsets, ANR-IB75N1/A/B is designed with a long-term support of 5 years.

 

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

 

 

Key features:

1. Support 3rd generation Intel Core i LGA1155 i3/i5/i7/Pentium cores processor

2. Intel B75 Chipset

3. DDRIII DIMM x 2, up to 16GB memory.

4. Intel 82576EB x 2 Fiber ports

5. Intel 82574L 10/100/1000Mbps x 8 ports

6. Two pairs LAN ports support bypass feature (LAN 1/2 + LAN 3/4)

7. LAN bypass can be controlled by BIOS and Jumper

8. CF socket, 2.5” HDD x 2, SATA III x 1, SATA II X1

9. Console, VGA (pinhead), USB 3.0 x 2 (2 x external)

10. Support boot from LAN, console redirection

11. Equipped with 80 Plus Bronze PSU to decrease CO2 dissipation and protect our environment

12. LCM module to provide user-friendly interface

13. Standard 1U rackmount size

 

 

Product information:

http://www.acrosser.com/Products/Networking-Appliance/Rackmount/ANR-IB75N1/A/B/Networking-Appliance-ANR-IB75N1/A/B.html

 

 

Ordering information:

1.ANR-IB75N1: 1U Networking Rackmount Platform with PCH B75, 8 x RJ45 GbE LAN (2 pair bypass)

 

2.ANR-IB75N1A: 1U Networking Rackmount Platform with PCH B75, 8 x RJ45 GbE LAN (2 pair bypass), and 2 x Fiber ports

 

3.ANR-IB75N1B: 1U Networking Rackmount Platform with PCH B75, 8 x RJ45 GbE LAN (2 pair bypass), and 4 x Fiber ports

Contact:

http://www.acrosser.com/inquiry.html

Can your gaming platform last long?

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance
Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

The first mezzanine standard to go through the VITA/ANSI process was the IndustryPack. Developed by gaming platform Computers, it was chosen by the Motorola Computer Group as the expansion mezzanine for its MVME162 SBC. The move to make IndustryPacks a standard was joined by Acromag and the VITA 4 IP Module effort was launched. Since then, no fewer than eight mezzanine standards have gone through the VITA/ANSI process to become accredited gaming platform.

Gaming platform are an important design element to many board form factors. They grew out of a necessity to gain more board real estate or to incorporate modular flexibility to the original form factor. In the early days, few, if any, standards for mezzanines existed. However, over time, standards emerged to make it easier to incorporate mezzanines into designs

refer to: http://vita-technologies.com/articles/stacked-standardizing-mezzanine-modules/

Migrating legacy applications to multicore: Not as scary as it sounds

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

Multicore processors bring significant performance and power usage benefits to embedded systems, but they also add the complexity of multiprocessing to the legacy migration workload. Nonetheless, development teams can successfully manage their transition to multicore by following some straightforward techniques.

Port to a portable standard

Often, migrating to multicore involves more than moving to a new processor. In many cases, developers must first port the legacy code to a new programming language, compiler, or OS. Using an open standard such as POSIX is highly recommended, in light of its support of many general-purpose and real-time operating systems. Doing so will help ensure that large portions of the application, including its interface with the OS, are portable. Just as important, the POSIX standard has a proven history in multiprocessing systems, and a multicore processor is simply a multiprocessing System-on-Chip (SoC).

Divide and conquer

The OSs that support Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP) are the best option for homogenous multicore processors. SMP leaves the complex details of allocating CPU resources to the OS, rather than to the application. From the application’s point of view, the interface to the OS remains the same, regardless of the number of cores, from 1 to N. Consequently, the application can scale easily as more cores are added.

A multicore system running in SMP mode provides true parallelism, but some legacy applications were never designed for parallel execution. Often, large portions of the code do not use threads, which would allow different parts of the application to run in parallel or use threads only to isolate blocking system calls such as file or network I/O.

Another typical pitfall occurs when code uses a priority scheme to control access to shared memory. For instance, in a uniprocessor embedded system, the softwaredeveloper can often assume that a high-priority thread and a low-priority thread will not access the memory simultaneously, since the high-priority thread will always preempt the low-priority thread. Thus, many programs fail to use a mutual exclusion lock (mutex) to properly synchronize access to the memory. In an SMP multicore system, however, both of these threads can run in parallel and, as a result, access memory simultaneously with unpredictable results. Other insidious problems might exist due to synchronization errors that work perfectly on a single processor system but surface only in multiprocessorexecution.

To solve such problems, developers can divide and conquer: isolate the problem code on a single core of the multicore chip until the code can be fixed. To do this, developers can use Bound Multiprocessing (BMP), an extension to SMP that allows selected processes to run on only a specified core or CPU. In effect, BMP provides a single-core, nonparallel execution environment for legacy code while allowing other code to leverage the full parallelism of SMP. The development team can subsequently remove the CPU binding once they have modified the legacy code to behave properly in its new parallel environment.

Leverage the tools

Development teams must also use the right tools. In particular, they need visualization tools that help them pinpoint areas where code is misbehaving in a parallel environment. Mostly, this effort involves the detection and correction of the synchronization bugs mentioned earlier.

Once an application is operating properly, it may still fail to take advantage of all of the multicore chip’s CPU capacity. Visualization tools can help here, too, by allowing developers to reduce contention for shared resources (hot spots), eliminate excessive thread migration or communication between cores, and find opportunities for parallelizing code. As the number of cores increases in multicore platforms, visualization tools will be the key to successfully leveraging the performance benefits that multicore offers.

To provide such analysis, multicore visualization tools must reach beyond the scope of conventional debug tools. They must, for example, track threads as they migrate from one core to another and diagnose messages flowing between cores. They must also offer flexible control over which events are recorded and when, so that developers can focus on areas of concern.

Making the transition

“Multicore” does not need to be a bad word nor add another roadblock to legacy migration. Adopting portable programming standards such as POSIX, using OSs designed for multicore platforms, isolating legacy code to run on a single core, and using visualization tools all make the transition less daunting.

 

 

refer:

http://mil-embedded.com/articles/migrating-applications-multicore-not-scary-it-sounds/

Simplifying the development of M2M devices

With advances in wireless technologies, defining a strategy for building wireless M2M-enabled devices is not the dauntingly complex task it was once thought to be. Instead of devoting precious R&D resources to the integration of fragmented, ad hoc technologies, today’s developers can take advantage of increasingly sophisticated Embedded Application Frameworks (Linux, Android, and others), some of which are highly optimized for M2M application development.

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance
Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

Machine-to-Machine (M2M) communication, or the ability to connect and manage remote devices over the air, offers enormous potential. With the ability to centrally control remote industrial equipment, trackvehicle fleets, manage electric vehicle charging stations, expand the capabilities of consumer devices, and much more, M2M has profound implications for virtually every industry.

Given the novelty of M2M technology, however, developing connected devices has traditionally been an expensive and time-consuming process, largely due to the fact that system designers had to build the entire M2M architecture from scratch. Today, designers have a powerful new option in their M2M toolkit: Embedded Application Frameworks (EAFs). By deploying connected services on mature, prepackaged Real-Time Operating Systems (RTOSs) and libraries embedded directly into the communications module, M2M designers can substantially reduce the time and costs involved in developing new M2M hardware and focus their efforts on creating innovative connected applications.

 

refer:

http://embedded-computing.com/articles/embedded-frameworks-simplifying-development-m2m-devices/#utm_source=Cloud%2Bmenu&utm_medium=text%2Blink&utm_campaign=articles

Automotive industry: Innovation driven by electronics

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance
Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

High-end electronics provide drivers and passengers with in-car navigation and entertainment and information delivered over a wireless network. In fact, many car buyers today care more about the infotainment technologies embedded in the dashboard than what’s under the hood. This phenomenon is requiring additional storage space for rich multimedia data and advanced software and applications and is driving an explosive growth of both volatile and nonvolatile memories. Embedded multimedia cards are helping meet this demand in today’s memory-hungry automotives.

The automotive market is moderately but steadily growing. Global car sales rose 6 percent year-on-year in the first half of 2012, despite the ongoing headwinds associated with the sovereign debt problems in Western Europe and some moderation in the pace of global economic activity. Global sales of passenger  and light commercial vehicles are expected to grow from 78 million units in 2011 to more than 100 million units in 2018. In a recent study, Gartner confirmed that electronics are playing a major role in the advancement of automotive technology. Electronic content in cars has been steadily increasing since the first digital engine control modules were introduced in the ’80s.

Today, microelectronics enable advanced safety features, new information and entertainment services, and greater energy efficiency. The electric/electronic share of value added to a state-of-the-art  is already at 40 percent for traditional, internal combustion engine cars and jumps as high as 75 percent for electric or hybrid electric vehicles. This trend will accelerate as advances in semiconductor technology continue to drive down the cost of various electronic modules and subsystems.

 

Refer:

http://embedded-computing.com/articles/automotive-industry-innovation-driven-electronics/

Modular standards for smart, connected devices

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance
Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

The competitive market for smart, connected devices is heating up, which requires OEMs to stay focused on differentiating their products and getting to market quickly. ARM-based building blocks are enabling OEMs to reallocate the resources needed to find, install, program, and troubleshoot drivers or debug hardware and concentrate instead on their core competencies. With prevalidated platforms that are fully configured and tested to deliver the required interoperability, compatibility, and functionality, OEMs can focus on application development and reuse existing application-specific software on a flexible hardware framework.

It is a dynamic time in the embedded market, as processors and software advancements are breaking down the barriers that once limited the implementation of various computing platforms. In conjunction with these advancements, embedded computing board and module suppliers are continually enhancing their platform portfolios to take advantage of the performance, interface, functionality, and power improvements available with next-generation processor architectures.

Refer:

http://embedded-computing.com/articles/modular-scalability-smart-connected-devices/#at_pco=cfd-1.0

The Intel 3rd generation mobile processors supported by the AMB-QM77T1

Industrial computer, Panel PC, networking appliance

The AMB-QM77T1 is the newest Mini-ITX industrial mainboard from acrosser Technology that supports both of the 3rd and 2nd generation Intel Core i7/i5/i3 mobile processor by Intel QM77 chipset and FCPGA 988 socket.

The Intel 3rd generation mobile processors supported by the AMB-QM77T1 features an integrated GPU, which is capable of supporting such graphical libraries as DirectX11, OpenGL4.0 and OpenCL1.1.

AMB-QM77T1 is the perfect solution to deliver high computing power for a wide range of applications such as medical, industrial automation, kiosk, digital signage, and ATM machines.

 

 

 The key features of the AMB-QM77T1 include:
‧  Intel QM77 chipset
‧  FCPGA socket supports 3rd Generation Intel® Core(TM) i7/i5/i3 processors and Celeron
‧  2* DDR3-1600/1333/1066 SO-DIMM up to 16GB
‧  Supports VGA/DVI-D/HDMI/LVDS displays
‧  Support 3 independent display
‧  Dual Intel PCI-E Gigabit LAN
‧  8* USB 2.0, 4* USB 3.0, 3* COM, 3* SATA II, 2* SATA III
‧  1* PCI-E x16, 1* Mini PCI-E, 1* CFast socket
‧  iAMT 8.0, TPM 1.2, Watchdog timer, Digital I/O Support VGA and DVI output