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Siemens launches new enterprise class embedded Linux solution for embedded systems development

  • New enterprise-class binary Mentor Embedded Linux solution is a proven commercial distribution that reduces risk and accelerates productivity for medical, industrial, aerospace and defense applications
  • Portability across multiple processor architectures offers increased development flexibility
  • Fully-configurable solution for optimal functionality, performance, and productivity

With the growth of internet of things (IoT) and other smart devices, it is becoming increasingly complex and expensive for manufacturers to develop embedded distributions and applications for these devices based on the Linux® operating system. Siemens PLM Software today announced a new enterprise Mentor® Embedded Linux® (MEL) solution that provides electronics manufacturers secure, scalable and configurable distributions for industrial, medical, aerospace and defense applications. This new MEL technology is a configurable distribution that provides a robust operating system platform for embedded systems development and is a result of the continued integration of the recently acquired embedded systems design capabilities from Mentor Graphics. The solution is based on Debian, a broadly utilized, enterprise class, open source Linux operating system.

The new Siemens enterprise technology provides the stability, full features, and ease-of-use benefits of an enterprise solution, and the performance, customizability and footprint of an embedded operating system. An internal team of embedded Linux experts originally developed this robust solution for use on critical Siemens automation equipment. Now commercially available, embedded developers can utilize this proven solution and thereby mitigate the costs and risks of moving to Linux.

“As more engineering organizations recognize the value of open source solutions, next generation embedded systems are also redefining software development needs,” said Chris Rommel, executive vice president of VDC Research. “Although many developers have gained experience with enterprise Linux, those traditional solutions cannot meet the performance requirements of most embedded systems. The new Mentor Embedded Linux addresses this issue, providing an enterprise-class solution for those developers looking for a Linux development experience beyond that for the platforms based on Yocto commonly used in the embedded market.”

The large number of pre-built and fully-tested binary packages integrated in the Siemens enterprise MEL solution provide all of the general features and parameters in the software platform so a large number of users can install it and use it with ease. This can make standard implementation across organizations much easier and more efficient. The Siemens binary MEL solution also includes a stable kernel, a robust toolchain, both with broad community support. This community support, combined with the commercial support and development power of Siemens, allows for increased development productivity and agility.

“By combining the capabilities of an embedded Linux distribution with those from the Debian binary desktop Linux distribution, today’s developers – many of whom have honed their skills in the Linux desktop development – can easily extend those same skills into fully featured embedded systems,“ said Simon George, director of system software and SoC Solution Marketing, Xilinx. “We expect that Mentor’s binary Linux solution will simplify many tasks for those who are developing with advanced SoCs such as Xilinx Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC devices.“

Embedded developers can stay up to date with available security patches and product updates, enabling enterprise-class standardization and maintenance. The new Linux solution enables support for secure field updates, and application isolation. Customers can thereby realize the cost efficiencies related to remotely maintaining and updating their devices. This solution is also multicore-enabled to consolidate multiple heterogeneous runtime environments using today’s most advanced processor architectures, leveraging the Mentor® Embedded Multicore Framework. This helps enable embedded developers to quickly build systems that integrate the Siemens binary Linux, and the Nucleus® real-time operating system (RTOS) on complex system-on-chip (SoC) processors.

“Siemens is excited about the operating system that our Mentor colleagues have designed for us. It’s the first of its kind for the embedded market, providing the robustness and ease of use benefits of an enterprise operating system, with the footprint, security, real-time behavior, and development tools needed for embedded applications – a new compelling option for embedded developers,” says Steffen Peschmann, SIMATIC IPC Product Manager. “At Siemens, we are currently working on some new products made possible only with this unique operating system.  This flexible embedded operating system will open up completely new possibilities for us.”

The enterprise-class MEL is cloud-enabled, supporting industry-standard cloud and IoT technologies such as XMPP, MQTT, AMQP, CoAP, and RESTful API support. Development and analysis tools are included for configuration and optimization of the operating system (OS) so customers can analyze the state and operation of the embedded platform. The industry-proven Sourcery™ Analyzer technology can generate time-series data for OS/platform diagnostics and device profiling. In addition, Siemens’ embedded team of experts can provide support, training, and professional services, from basic support and updates/upgrades to critical security defects patches, platform extensions and customized training.

Product Details and Availability

The binary solution based on Debian supports multiple leading hardware architectures and will ship in Q2, and will be showcased at Embedded World 2019, February 25-28, 2019 in Nuremberg, Germany (Mentor booth, Hall 4, #4-643). A MEL version based on the Yocto®  Project is also available. For additional product information, visit the website:

https://www.mentor.com/embedded-software/linux/based-on-debian/

Siemens PLM Software, a business unit of the Siemens Digital Factory Division, is a leading global provider of software solutions to drive the digital transformation of industry, creating new opportunities for manufacturers to realize innovation. With headquarters in Plano, Texas, and over 140,000 customers worldwide, Siemens PLM Software works with companies of all sizes to transform the way ideas come to life, the way products are realized, and the way products and assets in operation are used and understood. For more information on Siemens PLM Software products and services, visit www.siemens.com/plm.

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