Lynuxworks, which makes Linux software for embedded devices, has landed a deal with prominent chip designer ARM to bundle the two companies' products into a single embedded Linux development platform. The deal is a boost for Lynuxworks, which will gain visibility as a partner of one of the biggest names in embedded processors.
The platform, announced on Wednesday, is intended as a one-stop shop for developers looking to create embedded computing devices, such as set-top boxes, based on Linux. It includes Lynuxworks' BlueCat 4.0 Linux operating system software and VisualLynux Integrated Development Environment, together with ARM's Integrator Porting Platform hardware. This is based on the chip company's ARM920T core: it emulates the developers' planned system and lets them test software integration and functionality before the final hardware is available.
ARM's chip designs are dominant in the mobile phone industry and are widely used in other embedded platforms, including Pocket PC handheld computers from Microsoft and, beginning later this year, handhelds from Palm as well. ARM does not manufacture its own chips, but licenses its designs to chip makers like Intel.
Linux is gaining some steam in embedded devices, notably driving the Tivo digital video recorder and Sharp's Zaurus SL-5500 handheld. It competes against established, proprietary embedded operating systems, as well as newcomers like Microsoft's Embedded programme, which includes specialist versions of Windows CE and XP.