Congatec teams up with OSADL to optimise support for real-time Linux

Congatec and Open Source Automation Development Lab (OSADL) have linked up to optimise the board support for Real-Time Linux to showcase it in the OSADL test racks.

In a first step, OSADL qualified Congatec’s latest real-time Linux implementation that uses Linux kernel 4.9.47-rt37 on conga-TS170 server-on-modules equipped with the embedded server-class Intel Xeon processor (E3-1578L v5 @ 2.00 GHz).

The COM Express Type 6 module mounted on the evaluation carrier board conga-TEVAL performed well in the tests, says Congatec, impressing in particular through one of the best-in-class real-time capabilities.

The challenge when implementing hard real-time Linux behaviour lies in mastering all processing layers from BIOS to Linux kernel to user space, since the overall real-time capabilities are only as good as the weakest link in the chain.

In addition, modern processors such as Intel’s Skylake family offer a wide range of energy saving features that must be balanced to the requirements of real-time computing.

Executed in standardised racks, the OSADL quality assurance indicates that conga-TS170 server-on-modules are suitable for any real-time application. Target markets for these high-end modules for workstations and servers that also provide high-end graphics include high-speed test and measurement equipment, back-end systems in medical imaging, high-performance industrial workstations, as well vision-based inspection systems and situational awareness platforms.

“The congatec module with the Intel Xeon E3 processor of the Skylake generation passed all tests and showed excellent response times,” said Carsten Emde, general manager, OSADL. “Congatec and OSADL fit together very well; our customers and members come from virtually the same industries and therefore benefit equally from our services. One of these services is the OSADL QA farm, where embedded systems with very high test depths are tested for their real-time capability and other features that are important for industry,” he said.

Carsten Rebmann, director of research and development at Congatec, said: “Teaming up with OSADL is a great advantage for our customers and our own engineering team, as we all benefit from the joint forces for our real-time Linux developments. OSADL membership provides a vendor independent testimonial of our high-quality engineering and we receive great support with licensing questions as well. Joint engineering projects for new open source solutions also help us to concentrate on our own core competences – offering competitive advantages for our customers by simplifying the use of embedded computer technology.”

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