Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Linux To Gain Another Chip Family

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the assimilation-nation dept.

Linux Business 141

An anonymous reader submits "Freescale will unveil the first ColdFire processors ever to include a memory management unit (MMU), and therefore able to run full-scale Linux, this week at the Embedded Processor Forum in San Jose, Calif. The chips cost $17 - $25, and are used mostly in industrial control and factory automation. Simultaneously, Freescale tools subsidiary Metrowerks announced plans to offer Linux development tools for Coldfire chips, which previously had been restricted to running uClinux due to the lack of an MMU."

cancel ×

141 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

ya right (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179180)

Everyone conservative knows linux is just a jewish plot to ruin americas economy!

Shit, Piss, Fuck, Cunt, Cocksucker, Motherfucker, (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179539)

TITS!

http://www.erenkrantz.com/Humor/SevenDirtyWords. sh tml

"I love words. I thank you for hearing my words. I want to tell you something about words that I uh, I think is important. I love..as I say, they're my work, they're my play, they're my passion. Words are all we have really.

We have thoughts, but thoughts are fluid. You know, . And, then we assign a word to a thought, . And we're stuck with that word for that thought. So be careful with words. I like to think, yeah, the same words that hurt can heal. It's a matter of how you pick them.

There are some people that aren't into all the words. There are some people who would have you not use certain words. Yeah, there are 400,000 words in the English language, and there are seven of them that you can't say on television. What a ratio that is. 399,993 to seven. They must really be bad. They'd have to be outrageous, to be separated from a group that large. All of you over here, you seven. Bad words. That's what they told us they were, remember? 'That's a bad word.' 'Awwww.' There are no bad words. Bad thoughts. Bad Intentions.

And words, you know the seven don't you? Shit, Piss, Fuck, Cunt, Cocksucker, Motherfucker, and Tits, huh? Those are the heavy seven. Those are the ones that will infect your soul, curve your spine and keep the country from winning the war.

Shit, Piss, Fuck, Cunt, Cocksucker, Motherfucker, and Tits, wow. Tits doesn't even belong on the list, you know. It's such a friendly sounding word. It sounds like a nickname. 'Hey, Tits, come here. Tits, meet Toots, Toots, Tits, Tits, Toots.' It sounds like a snack doesn't it? Yes, I know, it is, right. But I don't mean the sexist snack, I mean, New Nabisco Tits. The new Cheese Tits, and Corn Tits and Pizza Tits, Sesame Tits Onion Tits, Tater Tits, Yeah. Betcha can't eat just one. That's true I usually switch off . But I mean that word does not belong on the list.

Actually, none of the words belong on the list, but you can understand why some of them are there. I am not completely insensitive to people's feelings. You know, I can dig why some of those words got on the list...like cocksucker and motherfucker. Those are...those are heavy-weight words. There's a lot going on there, man. Besides the literal translation and the emotional feeling. They're just busy words. There's a lot of syllables to contend with. And those K's. Those are aggressive sounds, they jump out at you. CocksuckerMotherfuckerCocksucker. It's like an assault, on you. So I can dig that.

And we mentioned shit earlier, of course. Two of the other 4-letter Anglo-Saxon words are Piss and Cunt, which go together of course. But forget about that. A little accidental humor there. Piss and Cunt. The reason Piss and Cunt are on the list is that a long time ago certain ladies said 'Those are the two I am not going to say. I don't mind Fuck and Shit, but P and C are out. P and C are out.' Which led to such stupid sentences as 'OK, you fuckers, I am going to tinkle now.'

And of course the word Fuck. The word Fuck, I don't really...well, this is some more accidental humor, but I don't really want to get into that now. Because I think it takes too long. But I do mean that. I mean, I think the word fuck is an important word. It's the beginning of life, and, yet it's a word we use to hurt one other, quite often. And uh, people much wiser than I have said, I'd rather have my son watch a film with two people making love than two people trying to kill one other. And I of course agree. I wish I know who said it first, and I agree with that. But I would like to take it a step further. I would like to substitute the word fuck, for the word kill in all those movie cliches we grew up with. 'Okay Sheriff, we're gonna fuck ya now. But we're gonna fuck ya slow.' So maybe next year I'll have a whole fuckin' rap on that word. I hope so.

Uh, there are two-way words, but those are the seven you can never say on television. Under any circumstances you just can not say them ever, ever ever, not even clinically. You can not weave them in the panel with Doc and Ed and Johnny, I mean it's just impossible, forget those seven, they're out.

But, there are some two-way words. There are double-meaning words. Remember the ones your giggled at in sixth grade? 'And the cock crowed three times.''Hey, the cock the cock crowed three times. It's in the bible.' There are some Two-way words, like it's okay for Kirk Goudy(sp?) to say 'Roberto Clemente has two balls on him.' But he can't say, 'I think he hurt his balls on that play Tony, don't you? He's holding them. He must have hurt them by God.' And the other two-way word that goes with that one is prick. It's okay if it happens to your finger. Yes, you can prick your finger, but don't finger your prick. No, no."

GEORGE CARLIN

first one (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179186)

one first

New Amigas (4, Informative)

Amiga Lover (708890) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179189)

These chips, distantly related to the 68k motorolas, were once touted as a possible upgrade path for new Amigas in the mid 1990s. Hopefully with these new ones, the more modern AmigaOS4 can be ported to them, and continue the heritage. At the moment the only stock available is AmigaOne G3, G4 and mini-itx PPC boards, which are artificially inflated in price by the apple/ibm/motorola consortium.

Re:New Amigas (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179239)

> Hopefully with these new ones, the more modern AmigaOS4
> can be ported to them

You can't "port" something that hasn't been written yet!

6 years now and all promises :(

Re:New Amigas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179264)

which are artificially inflated in price by the apple/ibm/motorola consortium.

Surely you mean there wasn't the demand from people wanting to buy them for a dead platform, therefore no demand = higher price.

Re:New Amigas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179984)

therefore no demand = higher price

Wat skool u go 2? No 1 want 2 by, no ken ask menny $.

Re:New Amigas (1)

Blue Lang (13117) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179281)

which are artificially inflated in price

What? Niche products costing more? Yeah, that sounds pretty artificial.

Re:New Amigas (1)

Blue Lang (13117) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179315)

Freescale's ColdFire line comprises 8-, 16-, and 32-bit processors. Significantly, the MCF547x and MCF548x ColdFire chips announced today are the first in the ColdFire architecture to be based on Freescale's new V4e core, which includes an on-chip MMU. The new ColdFire processors are capable of delivering up to 410 MIPS (million instructions per second) at 266 MHz, according to Freescale.

haha. yes, please DO run your amigaOS @ 410MIPS.

Re:New Amigas (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179329)

AmigaOS 4 could run rings around any other OS even at 266MHz. Its core is still based in the idea of efficiency. Remember the days when a 25mhz machine was fast? Those days are still there. Now the OS that ran well on 25mhz can run at 266, or 500, or 1GHz, and enjoy the same multiples in speed.

XP on a 3.4GHz P4? Still a slug

Re:New Amigas (2, Funny)

Breakfast Cereal (27298) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179838)

SunOS 4.1.2 ran pretty well at 25 MHz. I remember the days when an 8 MHz machine was fast. You had to press this button marked TURBO, as if you're sitting there thinking, Gosh, this machine is just dog slow! What can I do to make it go faster? Wait, I know! I'll press the TURBO button!

I remember days from before those days, too. I remember many different days. But I don't remember the Amiga except for some stuff about video toaster special effects I saw at a science fiction convention one time. Where was I going with this? I don't know, but what the hell.

Re:New Amigas (1)

nova20 (524082) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180477)

Gosh, this machine is just dog slow! What can I do to make it go faster? Wait, I know! I'll press the TURBO button!

Though most of the time that would make the machine run *slower* because most people would enable turbo out of the box...

/nova20

PowerPC is as cheap as ColdFire (4, Insightful)

Wesley Felter (138342) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179379)

First, let's compare apples to apples. These new ColdFire processors run at 266 MHz and cost $20-27. The 266MHz PowerPC MPC5200 (also from Motorola) costs $27.

Even the desktop-class PPC 750s and 74xxs aren't expensive if you buy them in volume. The AmigaOne is expensive because it is a niche-of-a-niche product, not because Moto is ripping people off.

Atari Coldfire Project (1)

ceallaigh (584362) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179387)

There is actually an Atari Cold Fire Project based on these processors: http://acp.atari.org/

Re:New Amigas (2, Insightful)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179398)

Well how about open motherboard designs? Is anyone working on this sort of thing? I know about the Open Core projects, but it's be neat to make a little computer from scratch.

Re:New Amigas (1)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179602)

IBM seems well positioned to drive this. Well, maybe not at this time, but I'd like to see them involved in such an effort.

Re:New Amigas (1)

Publicus (415536) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180304)

You'll be able to get development kits for this platform that fit the mini-itx form factor.

One type kit [logicpd.com] .

disclaimer: I work for that company.

Re:New Amigas (1)

mandolin (7248) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179508)

These chips, distantly related to the 68k motorolas

Can you elaborate. I thought ColdFire was basically a 68060 w/out an MMU. Does it have new instructions -- or strip out a few -- compared to 68k, (like the Power->PowerPC transition)? What else is different?

Re:New Amigas (1)

Detritus (11846) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179666)

If I remember correctly, they junked the binary compatibility with the 68K series of chips. This allowed them to redesign the binary level instruction formats and instruction decoder circuits. They kept compatibility at the assembly language level, just reassemble your 68K source code with a new ColdFire assembler.

Re:New Amigas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179835)

No, you remember wrong. The ColdFire instruction set is a *subset* of 68k. Mostly it's the rarely-used multi-word instructions that have complicated addressing modes that have been removed. This was an attempt to RISCify a CISCy instruction set.

You can sort-of run 68k binaries, by trapping on the instructions that are illegal in ColdFire and then emulating them. Motorola offers CF68KLIB for this purpose.

Re:New Amigas (4, Informative)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179537)

which are artificially inflated in price by the apple/ibm/motorola consortium.

It appears that way when in reality, that probably is an exercise in comparing bananas and oranges.

Development Evaluation / Reference Design boards are generally higher in price because of their volume, and the fact that they have different levels of support, often times, software, documents and engineering support is available to them for this type of product. Products intended for a slightly different market, the embedded market, are often slightly cheaper but don't always fit the "standard" form factors like ATX and ITX, but they weren't meant to be used as personal computers, so that point is moot, although it would probably help prices and cut development costs a lot.

The idea is that a prospective manufacturer would buy the Devel board to test the capabilities of the overall system. When they want volume, they take the reference design as a basis for their own fabrication and and make it in volume, but often for proprietary form factors to fit a very specific task.

One thing I noticed is that reference boards for Intel and AMD chips often cost a little more than those for RISC chips. If the ARM board costs $600, a similar embedded reference board for an x86 chip often costed $700 to $800. The difference here is that there are plenty of consumer boards available for x86 systems, but not RISC systems, so this is where the RISC boards look expensive.

Re:Screw Amigas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179754)

Revive the excellent Atari ST! Blew Amiga's away big time.

Re:Screw Amigas (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179855)

Are all the Tramails dead yet? No? Then it is not yet time.

You are deluded (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9180400)

There will be no "more modern" AmigaOS. Several months ago Amiga, Inc. sold off [amiga.com] its AmigaOS rights to its investor Itech, which in turn sold them to a newly created corporation called KMOS. KMOS does not stand for anything. Its only "product" is AmigaOS. It is incorporated in Delaware, which is a notorious tax and regulation shelter [216.239.41.104] .

Now, there are three things you could believe:
1. That Itech dumped the Amiga IP on a dummy corporation in order to protect its Amiga, Inc. investments from ongoing lawsuits [mindrelease.net] , similar to the Novell/Canopy shuffles [linuxinsider.com] . (most likely)
2. Alternatively, that KMOS CEO (and seemingly sole employee) Garry Hare is really serious about moving AmigaOS into the cellphone market [amigaworld.net] . (a little bit likely)
3. Or else, against all likelihood and the public statements of its CEO, that KMOS's primary goal is to get a new, working AmigaOS up and running.

If you believe the last one then I'd like to interest you in some Florida real estate that I'm selling through my own Delaware corporation. Face it, AmigaOS is finally dead this time. Move on to AROS or something, or just stop deluding yourself entirely and move to Mac or Linux or XP.

Why is this so important? (3, Informative)

raahul_da_man (469058) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179191)

I thought I knew which processors were important in the embedded world. What exactly is Coldfire, and why does it matter compare to ARM and Motorola's offerings?

I realise that Yet Another Embedded Processor that can run all of linux is a good thing. I just don't see why that is important, since the difference between embedded and desktop processors has been diminishing sharply.

ColdFire is 680x0 w/ recoded ISA (2, Informative)

r00t (33219) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179367)

Just as Power begat PowerPC and x86 begat x86-64,
so 680x0 begat ColdFire.

In this case, the instruction set was recoded
to save memory and reduce power consumption.
Given some 680x0 assembly code, you pretty much
have ColdFire assembly code. The mapping from
opcode to binary is different. Most likely there
are a few minor changes beyond that, but not much.

Huge Difference (4, Interesting)

bsd4me (759597) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179391)

There is a really big difference between embedded processors and mainstream CPUs.

The biggest is that power consumption is really important in the embedded world. Sometimes you can only get so much current to a board, or you can't run fans.

Typically, embedded processors can run without support chips. Many have built in memory controllers and I/O.

Another thing is the MMU. A lot of embedded processors have MMUs (I think most of the PPC ones do), but OS support for them is a bit lacking (or it was until recently). But at times, the MMU can get in the way

IMHO, I would never run linux in an embedded product, other than simple internet appliances or where realtime isn't required. Commerical RTOSs like VxWorks [windriver.com] really are worth it for most embedded applications.

VxWorks is crummy (3, Informative)

r00t (33219) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179446)

Their shell is an abomination. Their filesystem
is plain old DOS FAT, optionally with an
incompatible long-filename feature. The "mount"
command (function? all the same...) is totally
defective, doing some kind of dumb text substitution
instead of real mount points. Memory support is
terribly limited -- is 32 MB enough for you?

For the cost of VxWorks, you can get a bit of
extra memory for running Linux. You'll also save
on development costs that way.

If you'd really prefer a tiny OS designed for
strict real-time from the start, use eCos.
It's free even.

Re:VxWorks is crummy (2, Interesting)

bsd4me (759597) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179585)

I have never needed a filesystem on an embedded product, and I don't think I have worked on a deployed system with more that 32 M. I think the biggest had 8M.

I would also be hesitant to deploy an RTOS without a proven track record and without good support. I have found kernel bugs before, and I have had to fly out tech support to help out with problems at customer sites. Most commercial vendors will also support old versions for a long time if needed.

Re:VxWorks is crummy (2, Insightful)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179671)

I would also be hesitant to deploy an RTOS without a proven track record and without good support. I have found kernel bugs before, and I have had to fly out tech support to help out with problems at customer sites. Most commercial vendors will also support old versions for a long time if needed.

Well, ignoring that your login tells it all, I find it funny that you would knock Linux for support. You know that Linux (and to a large degree all OSS including BSD) has won the major awards for support for about the last 5 years. The OSS world tends to offer the best all around support.

In addition, the Linux/OSS world gives you the source code, so that you can figure out what is wrong and even do patches yourself. I figure that if you are really doing embedded, then you certainly have a clue about the kernel and how it operates.

As to flying otu tech support, well, all major companies do that, for a fee. So do you. I am quite sure that your company makes a profit IN SPITE (or perhaps, because) of having to deal with uncaught bugs.

Re:VxWorks is crummy (1)

bsd4me (759597) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179990)

Well, ignoring that your login tells it all, I find it funny that you would knock Linux for support.

I am not knocking Linux or BSD support. I am just saying that I have had situations where support from commercial vendors is really worth it, especially when you need the same level of support for old versions where upgrading is not an option.

In addition, the Linux/OSS world gives you the source code...

Yes, the Linux and BSD kernel and userland source is available for free. That is a huge bonus. However, most RTOS vendors will make their code avaialble for a fee (last time I looked into this, it was pretty big, though.

Linux and BSD are both fantastic systems, but IMHO, I do not think they belong in mission critical realtime applications. There are some companies like LynuxWorks [lynuxworks.com] that support embedded Linux, but given the choice I would almost always choose LynxOS [lynuxworks.com] over Embedded Linux [lynuxworks.com] , but most of the embedded systems I have work on require hard-realtime and I tend to choose very conservatively on embedded projects.

big embedded systems (1)

r00t (33219) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179808)

Consider the disk array controllers EMC makes.
Last I heard, a year or two ago, they were
using about 32 GB of RAM.

Consider the airborne radar systems and cell
phone base station software-defined radio based
on Mercury Computer Systems hardware. It's common
to have dozens of gigabytes of memory, sometimes
even hundreds of gigabytes. Each node of the
multi-CPU system might have 2 gigabytes or so.
Linux is often used.

Consider the telephone switchs NexTel produces.
That's a few gigabytes, running Linux of course.

Re:big embedded systems (1)

bsd4me (759597) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180132)

I can't comment on the drive controllers, since I don't know much about that area, but I know some about the other two.

As for the radar and comm hardware, I suspect that these started out on workstation hardware, and Linux made the transition to actual hardware much easier. I used to do a ton of comm simulation work, and would have loved this luxary. This would be a good fit for Linux in the embedded world, but it wouldn't surprise me if a traditional RTOS was used for the control functions.

Regarding the switch software, do you know if Linux is used at all levels of the SS7 stack, or just on the processing at the higher levels?

Re: big embedded systems (1)

r00t (33219) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180390)

For the switch hardware, PowerPC Linux is used to emulate some proprietary hardware that is no longer manufactured. Within the emulator, there is another OS. I'm told you don't just rewrite this sort of software. I gather it's a pile of decades-old spaghetti-code in a screwball language, and it has to speak oddball protocols for Iran, etc.

I'm more familiar with the radar and software-defined radio and such. Mercury, CSPI, and Sky are producing this. They put 300 PowerPC processors in a 9U space, or 80 processors and lots of FPGAs in a 6U space. Sometimes VxWorks or MC/OS gets used, but often the choice is Linux. The US Navy in particular wants to use Linux for everything.

For the cellphone base station, you want to process the radio signal directly. You do an A-to-D for each antenna, grabbing the whole frequency band for all phones at once. (yow!) Then, totally in software, you pick this apart to get the signals. You do echo cancelation. You might do beam-forming. You demodulate the signals, feeding error correction info back into the front-end code. The end result is a set of nice clean digital data streams for the phone switch to process.

For radar, it's pretty much the same thing, except that the end result is cockpit video of the terrain or a set of targets.

Here's another example: video transcoding and lossless logo insertion. Suppose you have some PAL video (50 fields/second, 576x1024) and you want North American HDTV video (59.94 fields/second, 1920x1080). Good transcoding involves motion detection, so that you can properly re-create a soccer player running instead of having a blur or double-image problem. Oh, you'd like to do this live, with cool 3-D cuts for ad insertion. The ads are in some other video format, and the odd-even nature of the interlaced fields wouldn't line up even if the ads were in the same format.

more big embedded systems (1)

r00t (33219) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180442)

How about medical? Linux is used for various kinds of body scanners. Often, especially with the 3-D stuff, many gigabytes of memory are required. Examples:

helical-scan CAT (a 3-D X-ray)

ultrasound with live 3-D video

digital X-ray, again with live video

PET scan (radioactive sugar emits positrons)

virtual bowel exam, with the doctor having a game-like 3-D view of your butt -- except that he doesn't get a BFG9000 to hit the cancers (the data comes from one of the above of course, the digital X-ray I think)

VxWorks is worthless because it lacks one thing... (2, Informative)

smcdow (114828) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179896)

... Perl.

We looked at VxWorks for our first-ever embedded project. When we found out there was no Perl for VxWorks, nor any chance of ever, ever having Perl on VxWorks, we quickly abandonded VxWorks in favor of Linux.

We've have no problems whatsoever using Linux as an embedded OS. Plus, we get to write much of our code in Perl as well. This is as it should be.

Re:Huge Difference (2, Informative)

bhima (46039) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180427)

I have *never* found a project where VxWorks was worth the cost! In fact if you look they are loosing market share to Linux. Also the two most commonly used systems are either in-house home rolled things like I use or Linux. Of I'm not writing code for space missions, just medical devices.

Re:Why is this so important? (1)

zalas (682627) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179407)

I believe Coldfire IS one of Motorola's offerings. The digital cable equipment company I worked at was using those for a variety of applications.

Re:Why is this so important? (1)

pommiekiwifruit (570416) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179660)

I think ColdFire [motorola.com] compares quite well with some of Motorola's offerings.

Also I think that the PowerPC compares quite well with some chips from IBM, the Athlon compares well to certain chips from AMD, and the micro-n-SP is equivalent in power to several chips from SunPlus. :-)

Linux? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179195)

I think you mean NetBSD [netbsd.org] .

Metrowerks (2, Informative)

lakeland (218447) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179213)

Freescale tools subsidiary Metrowerks


Huh? Metrowerks produces apple development tools, and they dabble in linux/embedded development tools. I'm pretty sure that Metrowerks is not a freescale subsidary. See for example this [metrowerks.com] PR.

Re:Metrowerks (2, Informative)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179252)


Founded in 1985, Metrowerks is today an independently operating subsidiary of Freescale Semiconductor. Metrowerks corporate headquarters are in Austin, Texas; Metrowerks Europe is headquartered in Munich; Metrowerks Asia is headquartered in Singapore; and Metrowerks Japan is headquartered in Tokyo.


In turn, freescale is a subsidiary of motorola. Source (27 April 2004)

Re:Metrowerks (1)

Roland Piquepaille (780675) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179436)

In turn, freescale is a subsidiary of motorola. Source (27 April 2004) Freescale is the new name of Motorola SPS, hence the reason Freescale itself is a subsidiary of Motorola.

Re:Metrowerks (2, Interesting)

Megane (129182) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179464)

In turn, freescale is a subsidiary of motorola.

Yeah, it was weird going down Parmer Road last week and noticing the Circle-M wasn't there any more. It took me a moment before I realized what those "Freescale" signs meant.

Re:Metrowerks (1)

d4rkmoon (749223) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180193)

Actually, Freescale isn't a subsidiary. Motorola SPS is being spun off as a separate company (thus they're filing SEC filings for an IPO). They're only being held as a subsidiary for the time being while papers are being filed. And since when was Metrowerks a subsidiary of Freescale? Founded in 1985 in Montreal, Canada, Metrowerks moved its corporate headquarters to Austin, Texas ten years later. Other Metrowerks offices are located in Silicon Valley, Europe, India and Tokyo. Metrowerks became an independently operating subsidiary of Motorola in September of 1999. (http://www.metrowerks.com/MW/About/default.htm)

Re:Metrowerks (4, Informative)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179271)

Huh? Metrowerks produces apple development tools, and they dabble in linux/embedded development tools. I'm pretty sure that Metrowerks is not a freescale subsidary. See for example this PR.

1 - Metrowerks is a Freescale "early tester", i.e. they get Freescale stuff first

2 - Metrowerks acquired Lineo [lineo.com] and their Embedix Linux offering a while ago, and offer it as one of their core products. Therefore, they more than "dabble" in Linux.

Re:Metrowerks (1)

d4rkmoon (749223) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180229)

Metrowerks also wrote many many development tools for linux/embedded. Take for example: Embedded linux for Motorola phones? Also, the development kit for PS2 and many gaming consoles. They've been around ever since I can remember for great development tools (remember Codewarrior?)

And the only reason they get Freescale things first is because they're all Motorolan to some degree.

Re:Metrowerks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179420)

Well Motorola thinks that it owns Freescale, and Freescale owns Metrowerks. Just google "motorola freescale metrowerks" and hit "I'm Feeling Lucky".

reference [motorola.com]

"Freescale's scalable PowerPC SoC platforms are supported by its Metrowerks subsidiary"; "Freescale Semiconductor, Inc [...] a subsidiary of Motorola, Inc [...]"

And for another opinion: reference [linuxdevices.com]

"Metrowerks is a wholly owned subsidiary of Freescale, which, in turn, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Motorola"

motorola (4, Informative)

Coneasfast (690509) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179222)

freescale is a subsidiary of motorola, here is homepage for coldfire [motorola.com] .

Obligatory Clemens quote: (0, Offtopic)

Fecal Troll Matter (445929) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179295)

When you ascend the hill of prosperity may you not meet a friend.

But..... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179228)

Can it run Linux????

Wait a minute.....

Great, I can use them (3, Interesting)

Orion Blastar (457579) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179233)

I want to build a low cost Computer Automated Dispatch system with just the basics for low income firehouses, police stations, and hospitals. This chip might just fit the bill. I was going to go with Transmeta or a low end X86 processor.

Re:Great, I can use them (5, Insightful)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179287)

Mission critical systems and first generation chips are not a good match.

Re:Great, I can use them (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9180779)

Considering that the first 68k processors were developed in the 1970's and that the Coldfire variant is over ten years old, I don't think it's entirely accurate to call this a "first-generation" chip...

Re:Great, I can use them (1)

irokitt (663593) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179463)

Cool idea. I, on the other hand, am entertaining grandiose dreams of alarm clocks, coffee makers, stereos, and microwave ovens. The limits are endless. Yes, it CAN run Linux ;)

Re:Great, I can use them (1)

bhima (46039) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180825)

I think you will find low end X86 to work quite well.

Unfortunatly I still find the tranmetta offerings a bit to pricey (but then again I don't have real issues with battery life with my projects!)

Nice... (1)

AlgUSF (238240) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179244)

I wonder when MSFT Embedded Visual C++ will support this?

Wow (-1)

MrRuslan (767128) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179248)

Imagine a be....A fluying penguine with one of these...yea thats right...

Yes! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179250)

Another Slashdot article not posted by Roll-and Pukepaille!

This isn't a great as it seems (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179253)

This new chip promises a lot of things, but a quick Google search [google.com] turns up a lot of issues. This hasn't been tested fully enough to say it's secure or better. Hell, we're not even sure if it could promise any sort of a speed boost at all. It's not really a good idea to just go with something like this.

Re:This isn't a great as it seems (1, Interesting)

Three Headed Man (765841) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179372)

He's right. I'm a developer, and there's nothing that we can say that this chip really offers. As it is, I'm going to wait some time before working with it. It's not uncommon to discover flaws and exploits in a chip architecture in the first few months after it's released. It holds promise, but I'm going to wait and stick with something else for the time being.

Re:This isn't a great as it seems (1)

mabhatter654 (561290) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180347)

The news is that it's a common chip that now has the Memory management onboard! It's an tried and true architecture, but now it will be easier for "hobbiests" to use linux because you can use the built in memory functions in the kernel...rather than having to adapt every single program to manage it's own memory...

It's now able to "qualify" for something like the Gumstix project [for intel Xscale]...a quick and dirty hobby board that's easy to port common stuff [telnet, serial I/O, and run some programs] to and use in some kind of hobby project. Not that it couldn't before, but now it can use off-the-shelf programs simply recompiled rather than hacked up to cover for missing hardware functions that we mere mortals can't do easily!!!

Re:This isn't a great as it seems (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179442)

Don't click that link. If you check your status bar, it's "http://www.google.com/url?sa=D&q=http://www.peopl esprimary.com/?n=Sarojin", which redirects to http://www.peoplesprimary.com/?n=Sarojin, not a Google search. The page is nasty

Re:This isn't a great as it seems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179484)

Sorry about that, I didn't check the link. -THM

Had to be said... (2, Funny)

c0dedude (587568) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179255)

Yeah but do they run... oh... wait... nevermind.

Re:Had to be said... (1)

pla (258480) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180503)

Yeah but do they run... oh... wait... nevermind.

You forgot "Just imagine a Beowulf cluster of these"... ;-)

(Actually, for the price/performance ratio, I'd rather have a cluster of Athlon XP 2600's. But that would require thinking outside-the-joke).

on chip stuff (4, Funny)

baryon351 (626717) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179256)

Other key features of the new MCF547x and MCF548x ColdFire processors include on-chip FPU and eMAC

Dammit apple, I just bought a brand new eMac only months ago, and now they're putting them on-chip for under $30!

Re:on chip stuff (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179516)

you read wrong, that should be emacs

Re:on chip stuff (2, Funny)

MikeXpop (614167) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179606)

Man did you get ripped off. The other day I downloaded emacs for FREE!

ColdFire is *already* supported in Linux (5, Informative)

gergoid (19247) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179258)

I added support for ColdFire processors to Linux years ago. This won't be new. It was added to Linus kernels in the 2.5 series, and is fully supported in the 2.6 kernels for all the older ColdFire parts (5206, 5249, 5272, 5282, 5307, 5407). Ofcourse the older parts did not have an MMU.

Look under the arch/m68knommu branch for all the architecture support...

Re:ColdFire is *already* supported in Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179302)

Look under the arch/m68knommu branch for all the architecture support...

That was put there for 68ks such as the 68EC060 which had no MMU, not coldfire

Coldfire is another chip entirely.

Re:ColdFire is *already* supported in Linux (4, Informative)

gergoid (19247) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179399)

Wrong. The ColdFire's run the same ISA as the m68k family. They are just a reimplemtation of the their ISA. Go look at the code under arch/m68knommu in the 2.6 linux source. You will find my name next to all the ColdFire bits.

ColdFire is 680x0, nearly (4, Interesting)

r00t (33219) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179400)

ColdFire was created like this:

1. start with 680x0
2. rip out the bloat (MMU, fancy FPU, etc.)
3. redo the opcode-to-binary mapping

Often you can use 680x0 assembly code on
a ColdFire chip, though you'll need to run
it through a ColdFire assembler. You can't
just grab a binary.

Re:ColdFire is *already* supported in Linux (4, Funny)

pyrrhonist (701154) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179495)

That was put there for 68ks such as the 68EC060 which had no MMU, not coldfire

Yeah! Way to serve the guy who wrote the support for the earlier ColdFire chips! Greg was obviously talking out his ass and doesn't know anything about the code he wrote. IT'S ON!

/*

* crt0_ram.S -- startup code for MCF5206 ColdFire Arnewsh board.
*
* (C) Copyright 1999-2002, Greg Ungerer (gerg@snapgear.com).
*

Re:ColdFire is *already* supported in Linux (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179554)

Tue enough, but I thought the "nommu" part meant that it was effectively running uCLinux and not the full Linux?

fiRst post?! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179259)

in a head spiining Ballots. You could channel, you might 7oo much formality To place a paper learn what mistakes You can. When the

Yay! (1, Interesting)

ejaw5 (570071) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179273)

Finally! A day will come where I can get a processor with MM and NX bit on a mobile motherboard featuring MXM interface.

Re:Yay! (2, Funny)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179466)

"Finally! A day will come where I can get a processor with MM and NX bit on a mobile motherboard featuring MXM interface. "

Rats, my universal translator is broken.

Heh (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179323)

Yes, but does it play Ogg Vorbis?

cool (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179334)

cool. no wait, it snot

FYI Freescale is the old Motorola SPS group (4, Interesting)

cacheMan (150533) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179335)

This isn't some fly-by-night chip maker.

Re:FYI Freescale is the old Motorola SPS group (0, Flamebait)

Roland Piquepaille (780675) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179403)

Thanks Mr. Obvious

Re:FYI Freescale is the old Motorola SPS group (0)

cacheMan (150533) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179520)

You are welcome, Mr. Jacka$$.

Re:FYI Freescale is the old Motorola SPS group (1)

bn557 (183935) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180287)

Dude, it's Mr. Piquepaille. Don't you even TRY to read the parent poster's name?

P

Wow (1, Funny)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179340)

Cold fusion processors... Is it real or is...oh, nevermind...

Let's get this over with... (-1, Redundant)

3) profit!!! (773340) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179452)

Just imagine a beowulf cluster of these things!

Another chip *family*? No. (4, Interesting)

DdJ (10790) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179547)

Another chip family? No, unless you think Intel XScale and TI OMAP are in different chip families. The ColdFire chips are just another example of the m68k family, like the DragonBall chips are.

cheapest embedded linux board? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179549)

What's the cheapest embedded linux board (inluding cost of flash ram .. oh yeah must have ethernet)?

Anyone have ideas?

I am checking on google .. seems like the minimum amount to spend would be over 200.

Roadside bomb with Sarin explodes in Iraq (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179571)

Where the WMDs are [myway.com] .

But Iraq didn't have WMDs!

Re:Roadside bomb with Sarin explodes in Iraq (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179702)

And I suspect that we will have a sarin attack here in the USA in about the sept/oct. time frame. Of couse, they will never find out who did it, but it will be blamed on Al Qaeda. It will follow the same pattern as the anthrax.

That is it will be obvious to those in the know, that the "attack" required several people working together. But later, one person will be accused of having done it get attention.

This underscores the need for software freedom. (3, Insightful)

jbn-o (555068) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179607)

Innovation like this underscores the need for relying on free software [gnu.org] (or, put differently, the problem with relying or recommending non-free software). It's an easy trap to get into when you use an i386 GNU/Linux distribution (as most GNU/Linux users do, I suspect) because there are so many opportunities to get hardware that only fully work with non-free software (like nVidia video cards that require non-free kernel driver software to operate fully). When you become dependent on non-free software you lose portability which prevents easily moving to interesting hardware like this one. Non-free video and audio codecs are similar; if you base your work on some Microsoft library for decoding audio or video you won't easily be able to read those files on a non-i386 platform.

Software proprietors won't supply the wide range of support the free software community does. Software proprietors won't give you the power to provide your own support or buy it from programmers and sysadmins in the free marketplace.

Re:This underscores the need for software freedom. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9179776)

Stallman, is that you?

uClinux (1)

gagy (675425) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179795)

mmmm.. that kind of sounds like an STD of some kind. A mix of crabs and clymedia. Can't wait to catch that one.

hello (-1, Offtopic)

mattyrobinson69 (751521) | more than 10 years ago | (#9179829)

a quote i heard from a Metrowerks employee:

"I like monkeys"

ok, it wasn't a Metrowerks employee, but i like monkeys.

uClinux (1)

Tesla Tank (755530) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180005)

Anyone else find uClinux to be a funny word?

Linux supports Cold Fire.. (2, Funny)

FuzzyBad-Mofo (184327) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180130)

Rush fans everywhere rejoice!

Coldfire is a popular controller (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9180169)

Motorola has sold a lot of coldfire controllers. They usually offer a dozen or so independently addressable relays, rs232, firewire, usb1.0/2.0 support, sensor and tie points (and usually a gob of other stuff) all stuck onto a small 10.16x12.7cm (4x5 inch) printed circuit board. Great boards for feedback/monitoring/control/SCADA. They usually are fairly cheap too.

Damn (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9180668)

That $30 chip is almost twice as fast as my combination (web/ftp/print/useless crap)server. If it has above 32M of memory, it has more RAM also.

I've got to admit that the thing is finally going to die at some point.

What's so "u" about uCLinux? (3, Interesting)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 10 years ago | (#9180789)

uCLinux is a port of Linux to CPUs without an MMU. Without an MMU, the chips don't support the convincingly simulated parallelism of fork(), rather just the nominally similar (blocking) vfork(). What other compromises must an application concede when running under uCLinux, rather than a "full" Linux kernel?
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>