Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 4th Mar 2013 20:32 UTC, submitted by Anonymous
Linux In a recent EE Times 2013 Embedded Market study, Android was the OS of choice for future embedded projects among 16 percent of the survey's participants, second only to 'in-house/custom' (at 28 percent). But if a spectrum of disparate approaches can be lumped together as a single option, why not aggregate the various shades of Linux to see how they compare? "Parsing the EE Times data this way makes it abundantly clear that Linux truly dominates the embedded market."
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Naturally
by ricegf on Tue 5th Mar 2013 12:06 UTC
ricegf
Member since:
2007-04-25

What's not to love? The source code is freely available and highly adaptable, mature extensions supporting (for example) hard real-time and strong security are readily available, and numerous companies offer an impressive range of training and support services.

As long as you don't need to distribute proprietary kernel-level changes and don't have some strong attachment to another product ("We've used VxWorks for 25 years..."), it's the obvious choice.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Naturally
by Alfman on Tue 5th Mar 2013 13:00 in reply to "Naturally"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

ricegf,

I agree, having linux source code makes it an obvious choice over most other commercial operating systems for embedded systems. It's widespread prevalence is a clear indication of that.

It would be nice to see BSD's (and others) in the embedded market though, they don't even make this list. I guess market forces aren't very favorable to them. Linux gets more attention because it's on top, and it's on top because it gets more attention. Such is the nature of the market forces behind the power law.


"As long as you don't need to distribute proprietary kernel-level changes and don't have some strong attachment to another product"

...Or pull an nvidia and distribute the proprietary parts as binary modules. There's quite the debate whether this is even allowed by the GPL2, but as I recall Linux himself thought it should be ok. Even if he's wrong, there isn't likely to be any action against proprietary Linux modules while he's the public figurehead for Linux.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Naturally
by ricegf on Tue 5th Mar 2013 16:56 in reply to "RE: Naturally"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

BSDs have great security, but do they handle hard reat-time ("the right answer a nanosecond past deadline is the wrong answer")? Honest question, I've never actually looked as our support companies all do Linux, proprietary, or both.

If you've used a hard-RT BSD, how well did it work for you?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Naturally
by TemporalBeing on Tue 5th Mar 2013 19:35 in reply to "RE: Naturally"
TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

ricegf,

I agree, having linux source code makes it an obvious choice over most other commercial operating systems for embedded systems. It's widespread prevalence is a clear indication of that.

It would be nice to see BSD's (and others) in the embedded market though, they don't even make this list. I guess market forces aren't very favorable to them. Linux gets more attention because it's on top, and it's on top because it gets more attention. Such is the nature of the market forces behind the power law.


BSD does have a relevant part of the market - in iOS. The problem is there is not much cooperation between companies in the embedded space when using BSD, so it doesn't get better outside of dedicated products like iOS where significant resources are put behind it by a single player.

Conversely, there's a number of real-time projects that are merely maintaining branches of the official Linux Kernel, and providing fixes back to the mainline kernel so it becomes easier to setup real-time systems using Linux.

So Linux is not in that position due to market forces - it had to overcome substantial market forces to get to that position. Rather it is in that position because it really is among the best in numerous views.

"As long as you don't need to distribute proprietary kernel-level changes and don't have some strong attachment to another product"

...Or pull an nvidia and distribute the proprietary parts as binary modules. There's quite the debate whether this is even allowed by the GPL2, but as I recall Linux himself thought it should be ok. Even if he's wrong, there isn't likely to be any action against proprietary Linux modules while he's the public figurehead for Linux.


Yes, Linus Torvalds has officially endorsed what nVidia and others do. So that won't likely change anytime soon, and without him against it (or whomever eventually replaces him) it'll be hard to prosecute anyone doing that. His position is for pragmatic reasons - he'd rather encourage the use of Linux that way, then keep it out of the market.

So again, it helps everyone since you can more easily pull those binary modules in from others in an approved manner instead of necessarily having to write your own, or port them over.

Reply Parent Score: 2