Arcom and FSMLabs Add Real-Time Support to Linux Development Kit

7/29/2004 - Arcom has further enhanced the features of its Linux Development Kit for the VIPER PXA255 based single board computer by adding support for hard real-time Linux from FSMLabs. Arcom now includes an evaluation version of RTLinux®Pro, the industry leading hard real-time extension to Linux - straight out of the box. The RTLinuxPro building block is a validated, hard real-time, POSIX operating system that runs embedded Linux as an application platform. The RTCore real-time kernel at the heart of RTLinuxPro provides consistently low interrupt latency and scheduling jitter plus seamless access to Linux. The VIPER is an ultra-low power PC/104 form factor (3.6 x 3.8) embedded processor board based on the 400MHz Intel PXA255 XScale RISC processor (ARM v.5TE compliant).

Zwane Mwaikambo, FSMLabs engineer and Linux kernel developer, notes that "the VIPER is a great platform for hard real-time embedded applications - it's got full JTAG support, low jitter/low latency real-time operation and a lot of interconnect options, with Ethernet, USB, CompactFlash, audio and even optional TFT/STN flat panel support." The VIPER provides 5 serial ports, a 16 channel DMA controller, 8 digital inputs, 8 digital outputs, 64MB of onboard RAM and up to 32Mbytes of Flash. Combined with an extended operating temperature range of -40C to +85C, it makes for a dependable hard real-time application platform.

Under heavy load, RTLinuxPro achieves an impressive 45s worst case system response (delay from interrupt to completion of context switch), compared with 320s under the standard embedded Linux implementation. FSMLabs RTCore real-time operating system can use either Arcom's embedded Linux, or the embedded Linux supplied with FSMLabs standard XScale RTLinuxPro development kit. VIPER boards can be purchased from Arcom or through FSMLabs with RTLinuxPro pre-installed. Please contact FSMLabs ( for details of their custom integration service, development tools, product support and licensing.

This comprehensive Development Kit includes the 400MHz VIPER single board computer fitted with 64Mbytes DRAM, 32Mbytes of Flash and 256Kbytes SRAM, along with the VIPER ICE (Industrial Compact Enclosure), the VIPER-UPS (uninterruptible power supply), serial and Ethernet cable set, an optional Q-VGA color display and touchscreen as well as a Quickstart manual.

Linux is a trademark of Linus Torvald. Intel and XScale are trademarks or registered marks of Intel Corporation. ARM is a trademark of ARM Ltd. FSMLabs, RTLinuxPro and RTCore are trademarks of FSMLabs, Inc.

About Arcom (
Arcom, a Spectris company (LSE: SXS.L), is a leading supplier of embedded computer and communications technology to industry. Founded in 1982, Arcom has developed a broad range of standard embedded hardware and software solutions for control, data acquisition and data delivery systems. From its design centers in Kansas City (USA) and Cambridge (UK), Arcom is also able to offer Design Services to meet the needs of high volume OEM and specialized customer requirements.

About FSMLabs.(
FSMLabs, Inc. is a provider of hard real-time solutions designed for reliability and simplicity of operation. FSMLabs was founded in 1998 and is a privately held, revenue financed, core system software developer with headquarters in New Mexico and sales and engineering staff in Alaska, Florida, India, Russia, Seoul Korea, and Tokyo Japan.

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