OS, tools selection

OS, tools selection

Post by Alex Russel » Sun, 11 Aug 2002 15:55:48




> I could use some good advice.

> I am a newbie to SW development in the current PC environment, though
> I do have a strong background with assembler (and machine code) in
> embedded applications, as well as some experience with QuickBasic and
> (long ago) Fortran.  I have also taken courses in C, C++, and Java,
> though I don't have a lot of experience with them.

> I am about to dive into a semi-embedded project (it would be nice
> if the system were available as a general purpose PC, though that is
> not absolutely necessary) that is focused on a legacy *ISA* data
> acquisition card.

> The interface to the board is fairly straightforward, with a few
> mapped I/O ports and a single HW interrupt line.  The stickiest part
> is that about 1500 bytes must be transferred (to RAM from a fixed I/O
> address) at each interrupt (they're about 200 microseconds apart).

> The rest of the application consists of a user interface (with a dozen
> or so buttons, a few dialog boxes, etc.), a little file handling, and
> some event-response logic.

> I was planning to attack this with Visual C++ (which I already have)
> and run it on Win2K.  I recently learned that W2K won't let me access
> the hardware directly -- that I'll have to write a device driver.  I
> have downloaded the DDK, but I have the impression that I either have
> to spend a great deal of time learning how to write and debug a device
> driver or spend a lot ($4K?) to get "turnkey" driver generator.

> Since I have a good amount of learning to do anyway, it *could* make
> sense for me to change horses now -- before I get to the middle of
> the rapids.  Though I'm fairly happy with W2K (it is everything that
> Microsoft claimed Win 95 would be), I am not an ardent MS supporter
> (would that make me an MS jock strap?) and do not relish a future that
> involves an ever-increasing Microsoft Tax (conveniently deducted from
> your paycheck?).  I understand that the successor to Win XP won't even
> boot unless it recognizes the chip implanted in your brain...

> Does anyone have specific suggestions about an OS, development tools,
> and/or learning materials that would make this a not-too-unpleasant
> and not-too-expensive experience?

> Any alternative (to W2K) OS environment must run on fairly modern
> platforms (the latest mobos that have an ISA slot with the fastest
> compatible CPUs, a few hundred MB of RAM, a few hundred GB of HD
> capacity, etc.) and it must have plenty of drivers for modern
> conveniences like CD and DVD recorders and NICs.

> I would appreciate any help.

> Thanks,

> Kel


> is that about 1500 bytes must be transferred (to RAM from a fixed I/O
> address) at each interrupt (they're about 200 microseconds apart).

That seems like a lot for a port. Is this fixed in hardware? If it wa memory
mapped it would be a lot faster.

As for your OS. Have you looked at linux? Nice OS, and it has 2 complete
gui's available (KDE and gnome).

--
Alex Russell

 
 
 

OS, tools selection

Post by Peter Peterse » Sun, 11 Aug 2002 18:06:54


Hi Kel,

Quote:> Does anyone have specific suggestions about an OS, development tools,

Have a look at On Time RTOS-32 (http://www.on-time.com). It is a Win32 API
operating system, and you can use Visual Studio 6.0/.NET under Windows as a
development platform. Yet, your application will run under real-time
conditions on the target, and it allows full access to the hardware
(interrupts, I/O ports, physical memory, etc). Since it requires no CPL
transitions to access hardware resources, and its scheduler is faster than
desktop OSes such as Windows or Linux, it will give you the best chance of
meeting your fairly high real-time and throughput requirements.

http://www.on-time.com has a free test version you can download.

Peter