What to Keep in Mind when Choosing an RTOS for your Embedded System

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Information about What to Keep in Mind when Choosing an RTOS for your Embedded System
Technology

Published on February 6, 2014

Author: MapuSoft

Source: slideshare.net

Description

With Real Time Operating System (RTOS) being the fundamental aspect of most of the Embedded Systems, it is essential that developers keep in mind the performance, features, and price, etc., before selecting a real-time operating system (RTOS).

What to Keep in Mind when Choosing RTOS for your Embedded System With Real Time Operating System (RTOS) being the fundamental aspect of most of the Embedded Systems, it is essential that developers keep in mind the performance, features, and price, etc., before selecting a real-time operating system (RTOS). Types of RTOS There are two basic types of RTOS, hard and soft, where a hard system is required when you have a situation where a task not meeting a deadline would result in a failure, while with a soft system you have no guarantee that your deadline would be met, but there is some window of reliability. The response time is the measure of the hardness of an RTOS, and the lower the response time, the better (harder) the RTOS. Here are a few aspects to keep in mind when selecting an RTOS vendor: Determine if the RTOS can support dynamic objects at runtime, as this provides better flexibility in your code, if not, it may be necessary to create all of your system objects before runtime. There may be a need for more than one policy in your application. Verify if Pre-emptive, Round Robin, Cooperative, Time-Sliced and Multivariate Slicing, are supported by the RTOS. Learn about the services that are offered; the more API calls the better. It is also important to pay attention to any API calls that are needed for your particular application. Verify how the RTOS handles disruptions and whether macros/functions are supported. In most cases, if the macros are not supported, it may be necessary to write your own code, which would in turn extend development time. Find out if the RTOS supports multiple tasks waiting on a single event and/or a single task waiting on multiple events. Discover any constraints now to help determine if the RTOS event synchronization model will support your application. To avoid additional overhead associated with garbage cleanup and fragmentation, look for an RTOS that has the ability to create deterministic memory allocations.

Get to understand the alternatives provided by the RTOS to pass data between options. Preferably, the RTOS should support several options. Consider the cost aspects like Initial software license fees, Recurring license fees, Support Costs, Training Costs, Development labor costs (programmer, QA, manager, etc.) To help determine the development, labor costs, have a look at the RTOS documentation. Pay particular attention to sample code, tutorials and training options. Keep in mind that if your application must run on multiple operating systems, it may be necessary to consider the cost of porting the software. Another important aspect to keep in mind is, the worst case response time that your application can live with. As most embedded systems have fixed memory limitation, it is important to understand how much memory your embedded system allows, like the actual memory required by the RTOS itself and the actual memory required by your application. This can be ascertained by using an RTOS simulator, which provides an accurate estimate, which is particularly essential when dealing with a limited system. Partner with a service provider who is established in the embedded industry, to provide you with highly optimized solutions for each specific platform. Reputed service providers also offer assistance in areas like rtos porting, etc.

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