SAN JOSE, Calif.—The Multicore Association (MCA) launched a new working group to expand and set a standard for the Open Asymmetric Multi-Processing Framework. OpenAMP is a Linux software framework for systems using multiple operating systems and processors.
The framework helps application developers tap the parallelism in systems using multiple multicore processors of the same or different kinds. It works across versions of Linux, real-time operating systems and bare-metal software environments.
OpenAMP has support for shared memory protocol, inter-process communication, resource management and sharing, and remote process control. Versions of the open source code are already available, supported by a handful of companies.
Initial members of the working group are Express Logic, Mentor Graphics, Micrium, NXP, Renesas, Wind River and Xilinx. “While Xilinx has already implemented an initial version of OpenAMP for our Zynq products, we believe that this is just the tip of the iceberg in taking advantage of the potential capabilities of this framework,” said Tomas Evensen, CTO of embedded software at Xilinx, who will chair the group.
The group aims to support the MCA’s existing Multicore Communications API (MCAPI) on OpenAMP. “MCAPI can be a layer on top of OpenAMP enabling higher performance use cases and further capabilities such as zero copy,” said Sven Brehmer, MCA CTO and president of PolyCore Software, speaking in an MCA press statement. “OpenAMP provides a great complement to the MCA’s current specifications, helping to ensure platform coverage from low- to high-end embedded systems,” he added.
“The goal is to take what’s been done with OpenAMP, make it more expandable and standardize on it so people don’t fork it into new directions,” said Markus Levy, president of MCA. “Prior to OpenAMP, there was no easy, standard way for a master operating system to oversee discrete heterogeneous and/or AMP cores, so companies had to implement and maintain proprietary implementations,” he said.
The group is especially interested in attracting members who are vendors of SoCs and anyone with an operating system. Cost of membership is $2,500 per year.
OpenAMP is currently available under a BSD license. The MCA project hosts an email list for community discussions around roadmap issues. The group’s first developer meeting is scheduled for January 27.
— Rick Merritt, Silicon Valley Bureau Chief, EE Times