Combining OSTree and SW Containers for reliable IoT Device updates

OSTree IoT devices

CNXSoft: This is a guest post by Drew Moseley, Technical Solutions Architect at Toradex, explaining how the company updates Linux IoT devices firmware with OSTree (aka libostree) open-source operating system build and deployment tool, as well as Docker software containers. Every day more and more connected devices are being brought to market and estimates for the total size of the Internet of Things (IoT) market are as high as $1.5 trillion by 2027. Gas pumps, medical devices, and point of sale systems are increasingly connected, making it virtually impossible to avoid interacting with these devices, even for complete Luddites. In the home, devices such as power meters, light switches, and security cameras are commonly internet-enabled allowing for smart home functionality. The level of complexity in the software for these devices increases with the functionality, and the number of devices with software defects in the field is growing. In many cases, these systems are designed, produced, and shipped without any consideration […]

ClusBerry-2M Industrial IoT controller takes two Raspberry Pi Compute Modules 4

ClusBerry-2M Industrial IoT controller

Earlier this year, Techbase introduced the ClusBerry 9500-CM4 cluster system for industrial IoT that can take up to eight Raspberry Pi Compute Modules 4 housed in a DIN rail enclosure. But for smaller projects and IoT prototyping, the company has now designed ClusBerry-2M, a smaller cluster device including two independent ModBerry I/O mainboards and two Compute Module 4’s that’s equivalent to two ModBerry 500-CM4, but with support for software cluster management tools such as Docker and K3s Lightweight Kubernetes. The company did not share the full ClusBerry-2M specifications, but we can derive most of the features from the photos, previous products features, and the announcement: SoM – 2x Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 with Broadcom BCM2711 quad-core Cortex-A72 processor @ 1.5 GHz, 1 to 8GB RAM, up to 32GB eMMC flash. Storage – 2x M.2 slots for NVMe SSDs Video Output – 2x HDMI 2.0 ports Connectivity 4x Gigabit Ethernet ports Optional Wi-Fi (IEEE 802.11 b/g/n/ac) & Bluetooth 5.0 module […]

Use Scheme functional programming language with LambdaChip Alonzo STM32 board

LambdaChip Alonzo STM32 Scheme functional programming

Most MCU-based embedded systems come with firmware programmed with assembler, C, and/or C++.  But as referenced in a paper published in 2000 entitled ” Point of view: Lisp as an alternative to Java“, functional programming languages like Lisp or Scheme may lead to shorter development times compared to C/C++ or Java. That’s with this idea in mind that LambdaChip was created. It is a lightweight, open-source virtual machine designed to run on embedded systems with limited resources, for instance, an 80MHz microcontroller with 50KB RAM, and programmable with Scheme multi-paradigm programming language, a dialect of Lisp widely used for functional programming research and teaching. The company behind the project, also called LambdaChip, has just created its own hardware with LambdaChip Alonzo, an STM32 Cortex-M4 development board with 512KB flash, 128KB RAM, and that also comes with Bluetooth LE connectivity. LambdaChip Alonzo board specifications: MCU – STMicro STM32F411CEU6 Arm Cortex-M4 MCU @ 100 MHz with 512KB flash, 128KB RAM; UFQFN48 package […]

Linux Powered Industrial IoT Gateway Offers WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.1, 4G LTE Connectivity

Linux Industrial IoT Gateway

Compulab IOT-GATE-IMX8 is a Debian Linux powered fanless Industrial IoT gateway powered by NXP i.MX 8M Mini processor and specially designed for industrial control and monitoring with optional support for WiFI 6 (802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.1, 4G LTE, and GNSS connectivity. The gateway is equipped with up to 4GB RAM and 128GB eMMC flash, takes variable DC input from 8V to 36V, and operates in a wide temperature range of -40C to 80°C with the company providing a 5-year warranty and 15-year availability. Compulab IOT-GATE-IMX8 specifications: SoC – NXP i.MX8M Mini quad-core Arm Cortex-A53 processor @ 1.8GHz with Arm Cortex-M4 real-time core, Vivante 3G and 2D GPU System Memory – 1GB – 4GB LPDDR4 Storage – 4GB – 64GB eMMC flash (soldered on-board), plus secondary storage with optional 16GB – 64GB eMMC flash module Networking & Wireless Connectivity Gigabit Ethernet port, RJ45 connector Fast Ethernet port, RJ45 connector Optional 802.11ax WiFi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1 BLE via Intel WiFi 6 AX200 […]

NVIDIA Introduces Jetson Xavier NX Developer Kit, and Cloud-Native Support

Jetson Xavier NX Developer Kit

NVIDIA Jetson Xavier NX SoM was launched last month for $459. But while some third-party carrier boards were also announced at the time, the company had yet to offer Jetson Xavier NX Developer Kit as they did for Jetson Nano. But as GTC 2020 conference is now taking place in the kitchen of Jensen Huang, NVIDIA CEO, the company had plenty to announce including Jetson Xavier NX Developer Kit as well as  “Cloud-Native” support for all Jetson boards and modules. NVIDIA Jetson Xavier NX Developer Kit Specifications: CPU – 6-core NVIDIA Carmel ARMv8.2 64-bit processor with 6 MB L2 + 4 MB L3 cache GPU – NVIDIA Volta architecture with 384 NVIDIA CUDA cores and 48 Tensor cores Accelerators 2x NVDLA Engines 7-Way VLIW Vision Processor Memory – 8 GB 128-bit LPDDR4x 51.2GB/s Storage – MicroSD slot, M.2 Key M socket for NVMe SSD Video Output – HDMI and DisplayPort Video Encode – 2x 4Kp30 | 6x 1080p 60 | […]

DEVICE.FARM Generates Raspbian/Armbian Docker Images for about 100 Arm Linux SBCs

Last year, I reviewed BalenaOS and BalenaCloud on Raspberry Pi CM3L based BalenaFin hardware. The solution generates OS images with docker support in order to easily manage and update a fleet of devices remotely over a web interface or client program. Balena.io supports over 60 boards either officially, or thanks to the work of the community, but Pavel Burgr is developing an alternative with DEVICE.FARM supporting close to 100 Arm SBC’s including Raspberry Pi boards, and most Armbian supported Arm SBC’s. DEVICE.FARM is still beta, but the MVP (Minimum Viable Product) version of the website provides: Customized images for supported boards (currently 94 boards) Preinstalled docker Secure remote access to the device’s docker end-point Secure remote access to the device’s services exposed by containers This is functional, but bugs are likely, and documentation still needs to be finalized. I don’t have a board with me, but I tried to generate an image for Orange Pi Zero SBC. Once you click […]

Some Interesting Talks from FOSDEM 2020 Schedule

FOSDEM 2020 Schedule

We wrote about IoT devroom call for proposals for FOSDEM 2020 a little while ago, and as the free open-source developer meetup is getting closer, FOSDEM 2020 organizers released the schedule. So I’ll look at some of the talks in the relevant devrooms such as the Internet of Things, hardware enablement, Embedded, Mobile and Automotive, as well as RISC-V and others to compose my own little virtual schedule for the 2-day event. Saturday, February 1 10:30 – 10:50 – How lowRISC made its Ibex RISC-V CPU core faster – Using open source tools to improve an open-source core – by Greg Chadwick Ibex implements RISC-V 32-bit I/E MC M-Mode, U-Mode, and PMP. It uses an in-order 2 stage pipe and is best suited for area and power-sensitive rather than high-performance applications. However, there is scope for meaningful performance gains without major impact to power or area. This talk describes work done at lowRISC to analyze and improve the performance of […]

Arm Techcon 2019 Schedule – Machine Learning, Security, Containers, and More

Arm Techcon 2019

Arm TechCon will take place on October 8-10, 2019 at San Jose Convention Center to showcase new solutions from Arm and third-parties, and the company has now published the agenda/schedule for the event. There are many sessions and even if you’re not going to happen it’s always useful to checkout what will be discussed to learn more about what’s going on currently and what will be the focus in the near future for Arm development. Several sessions normally occur at the same time, so as usual I’ll make my own virtual schedule with the ones I find most relevant. Tuesday, October 8  09:00 – 09:50 – Open Source ML is rapidly advancing. How can you benefit? by Markus Levy, Director of AI and Machine Learning Technologies, NXP Over the last two years and still continuing, machine learning applications have benefited tremendously from the growing number of open source frameworks, tools, and libraries to support edge inferencing. These include CMSIS-NN, ARM […]