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Genesi's Open Server Workstation and "MyPowerPC"

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Apr 252006

Genesi has revealed more details on the 970MP system they’re developing, the Open Server Workstation (OSW). They claim the motherboard will be 8 layers, hold two 970MPs (four cores), will have 3D graphics support, and they’re targeting US$1500 for a complete system. Genesi also expects to “generate decent unit sales for this item during 2006”. That sounds like “will ship in 2006”, with enough wiggle room so that they just have to sell some (pre-orders?).

Genesi has also announced MyPowerPC, which seems to be a Gentoo build farm that only builds for Genesi systems.

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Freescale Roadtrip

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Apr 242006

Freescale is going on a roadtrip to show off its shiny new mini-ITX 8349E reference platform, part of its “PowerQUICC Pro II” brand. The seminars will be free to embedded developers, and will run in 15 cities across the US.

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Freescale mini-ITX Reference Board

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Apr 202006

Freescale recently introduced a mini-ITX reference board for the 8349E processor. The board is intended to be for network-attached storage (NAS) and media server applications, and comes with lots of USB ports, serial, SATA, and PCI expansion slots. The SDK, also used for Buffalo’s PowerPC-based TeraStation, was developed by Mediabolic. Freescale claims that the reference board and schematics are available now, though they aren’t listed on freescale.com.

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PowerPC Optimizations for GNU C Library

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Apr 172006

IBM developer Steve Munroe has started a project to implement processor-specific optimizations for the GNU C Library (glibc). From his announcement: “The implementation in glibc mainline leaves a lot of performance on the table because that source must be safe and reasonable to run on any processor for that architecture.” He currently has optimizations for memcpy, memcmp, and memset on POWER4 and POWER5, with impressive results. Check it out and contribute code for your favorite PowerPC!

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Profiling on the POWER5

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Apr 162006

IBM developerWorks has a new article up describing the complexity of profiling on the POWER5 processor. “At any clock cycle, you have to handle a typical situation of five instructions/group, 20 groups past dispatch, 32 outstanding loads, 16 outstanding misses, two independent threads, and the decoupled nest/core.” The author discusses oprofile on Linux, curiously providing a ksh script to run it… but then all is made clear as they spend most of the article discussing AIX tools.

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KuroBox Resuscitated?

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Apr 092006

After over a year of neglect by Buffalo Technology, the KuroBox (and Buffalo’s Revolution brand) is under new management, and his name is John Causey. The KuroBox, an embedded system running Linux on the PowerPC 8241, is now available for US$109, and the KuroBox HG for US$179. Not only that, there is an interesting bounty posted: port U-boot to the Kuro and win a 1TB TeraStation Pro. Hackers with JTAG, have at it…

Update: the Kuro Standard has just been discontinued, and the Kuro HG is now US$149.

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Power.org-related News

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Apr 072006

Power.org made a variety of announcements today, including:
Mercury Computer Systems announced a 1U dual-Cell server.
IBM announced there will be dual-core 970MP processors that run at 25 watts, and the CPC945 northbridge at 12 watts.
AMCC, which bought IBM’s 400-series embedded PowerPC line several years ago, has finally joined Power.org.

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Sun Java Standard Edition for PowerPC

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Apr 072006

This week at the Embedded Systems Conference, Sun released a “fully supported custom port” of Java Standard Edition (J2SE) 1.4.2 for PowerPC Linux. OK, actually it’s an evaluation version, and it’s only for embedded systems. It’s unclear how the embedded Standard Edition differs from the standard Standard Edition available for other architectures, but the “embedded Standard Edition” is apparently not the same as Mobile Edition (J2ME). (If you figure it out, please email the webmaster).

Update: LinuxDevices has figured it out. Among other things, J2ME is licensed only as source code, and lags J2SE in releases.

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Terra Soft Releases Y-Bio 1.1

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Apr 072006

Terra Soft Solutions, makers of Yellow Dog Linux, have just released version 1.1 of their Y-Bio distribution. Y-Bio 1.1 is integrated with Penguin Computing’s “Scyld ClusterWare™ HPC – Life Sciences Suite”, and has added some additional gene sequence analysis tools since 1.0. Y-Bio continues to install onto x86-based Fedora, Red Hat, and SUSE Linux distributions.

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AMCC Announces 405EZ

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Apr 022006

OK, this one is going to take a little suspension of disbelief, but the press release, which strangely is available only as a PDF, is dated 3 April…

AMCC has announced a new chip in the 405 series, the 405EZ. It will run from 100 to 400 MHz, has a fancy new timer peripherial which your editor doesn’t grok (apparently for real-time stuff), and is expected to be available for samples in 4Q 2006.

As if the chip name weren’t enough, the PDF-only press release was put out by a company named “PR on Demand“, located at prondemand.com. We couldn’t even make this stuff up.

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