One-second boot

Santa Clara, California-based MontaVista Software has developed a version of the embedded Linux operating system running on a Freescale processor that can bring an application to life in just one second.


For industrial automation and other similar applications, fast boot-and-response time is critical to successful operation. Applications must be fully operational at power-on and cannot be delayed due to the volatile nature of the platform and environment.


Variables such as power fluctuation, network failure, device availability, and memory management must be responded to with no loss of performance and functionality. These same demanding requirements are found not just in industrial automation applications, but automotive, aerospace and military applications as well.


Jim Ready, chief technical officer at MontaVista Software, said: ‘It’s always been thought that embedded Linux could never perform at this level of speed and efficiency. We’re proud to be the first embedded Linux vendor to achieve and demonstrate this demanding level of performance.’


The application was built on MontaVista Professional Edition Linux and Freescale Semiconductor MPC5121e hardware. The application requirements demanded visual feedback of critical real-time data in one second or less from cold power-on.


The performance was achieved through a combination of careful tuning of the entire software stack and a highly optimised kernel.