Topics

UDRX Processor Board Was: 44 addresses / JNOS 56K / Gateway Security ?


"John D. Hays" <john@...>
 

Clarification on comments referenced by N8GNJ

NW Digital Radio is looking at alternative “off the shelf” computer boards. The Raspberry Pi 2 is a candidate, but we are still in the investigative stage -- no selection has been made. We have certain requirements for interfacing the radio to such a computer board.

We believe that using such an “off the shelf” board could expedite delivery of the UDRX-440 as the board that was designed a couple of years ago uses a less available SOC processor, which now has extended lead times.

We also believe this will allow the UDRX to evolve with newer processors as they become available, providing increased speed and functionality over time.

The software effort to move from one Debian based ARM processor to another is minimal as we largely use drivers already in the operating system and any additional drivers that we might develop will mostly be a recompile. All application software should also either run or simply require a new compile.


We also agree that hearty and widely used computer platforms will enhance the delivery of even more solutions based on the UDRX architecture.


myyahoo@...
 

I just attended the Embedded Linux 2015 conference, and there are a lot of choices (and a varying price range).

e.g., at $99 Intel had an Atom-based board with full-speed GigE, SATA, USB3, HDMI, and other interconnects. It was running at about 4 watts while doing HD video decoding.

I have a Raspberry PI 2, and while it has more processing power than the original (four, faster cores instead of one slower core), it is still constrained for I/O. If we don't need the I/O, the $35 price tag is very attractive.

I'm putting GNUradio onto it to see how well it does.

- Richard


"John D. Hays" <john@...>
 

Hi Richard,

To maintain the price point for the UDRX, we need something in the $50 and below range (including CPU, Memory, Network, and USB interfaces).

The interface to the radio requires a SPI bus, I2S bus, and various GPIO.

Our DSP code is fixed point, so highly efficient and doesn't strain a CPU.  However, having multiple cores, plenty of RAM, etc. is important for applications.

We have been watching various boards but a lot of otherwise good candidates are lacking one or more of the needed interfaces.

We have no video processing needs in the radio.

The Raspberry Pi processors put Ethernet on the USB bus but for normal operations should be sufficient, but it is one of the questions we have about the board.

Did you see any boards that match the listed items that we should look at?

On Fri, Mar 27, 2015 at 2:50 PM, myyahoo@... [UniversalDigitalRadio] <UniversalDigitalRadio@...> wrote:
 

I just attended the Embedded Linux 2015 conference, and there are a lot of choices (and a varying price range).

e.g., at $99 Intel had an Atom-based board with full-speed GigE, SATA, USB3, HDMI, and other interconnects. It was running at about 4 watts while doing HD video decoding.

I have a Raspberry PI 2, and while it has more processing power than the original (four, faster cores instead of one slower core), it is still constrained for I/O. If we don't need the I/O, the $35 price tag is very attractive.

I'm putting GNUradio onto it to see how well it does.

- Richard


--


John D. Hays
K7VE

PO Box 1223, Edmonds, WA 98020-1223 
  


Donald Jacob <wb5eku@...>
 

Have you looked at the Beagle bone Black?
Don WB5EKU

On Mar 27, 2015 3:03 PM, "'John D. Hays' john@... [UniversalDigitalRadio]" <UniversalDigitalRadio@...> wrote:
 

Hi Richard,

To maintain the price point for the UDRX, we need something in the $50 and below range (including CPU, Memory, Network, and USB interfaces).

The interface to the radio requires a SPI bus, I2S bus, and various GPIO.

Our DSP code is fixed point, so highly efficient and doesn't strain a CPU.  However, having multiple cores, plenty of RAM, etc. is important for applications.

We have been watching various boards but a lot of otherwise good candidates are lacking one or more of the needed interfaces.

We have no video processing needs in the radio.

The Raspberry Pi processors put Ethernet on the USB bus but for normal operations should be sufficient, but it is one of the questions we have about the board.

Did you see any boards that match the listed items that we should look at?

On Fri, Mar 27, 2015 at 2:50 PM, myyahoo@... [UniversalDigitalRadio] <UniversalDigitalRadio@...> wrote:
 

I just attended the Embedded Linux 2015 conference, and there are a lot of choices (and a varying price range).

e.g., at $99 Intel had an Atom-based board with full-speed GigE, SATA, USB3, HDMI, and other interconnects. It was running at about 4 watts while doing HD video decoding.

I have a Raspberry PI 2, and while it has more processing power than the original (four, faster cores instead of one slower core), it is still constrained for I/O. If we don't need the I/O, the $35 price tag is very attractive.

I'm putting GNUradio onto it to see how well it does.

- Richard


--


John D. Hays
K7VE

PO Box 1223, Edmonds, WA 98020-1223 
  


"John D. Hays" <john@...>
 

Yes -- it's in our list. It does have some mechanical issues, but is "in the mix" ....

On Fri, Mar 27, 2015 at 3:19 PM, Donald Jacob wb5eku@... [UniversalDigitalRadio] <UniversalDigitalRadio@...> wrote:
 

Have you looked at the Beagle bone Black?
Don WB5EKU

John D. Hays
K7VE

PO Box 1223, Edmonds, WA 98020-1223 
  


myyahoo@...
 

Hi, John:

I can't say that I saw the perfect combination of tech and price, but I'll look through the stuff that I brought home and see if any of the options come close...

- Richard


dsp_stap@...
 

---In UniversalDigitalRadio@..., <john@...> wrote :
> NW Digital Radio is looking at alternative
> “off the shelf” computer boards. The Raspberry
> Pi 2 is a candidate, but we are still in the
> investigative stage -- no selection has been
> made.

Choose wisely.  The life of your project depends upon it.  There are thousands who will not go near it if it is not truly free (as in speech).  We value liberty.

Without outside free software development, your project goes nowhere.

I'm willing to pay for freedom.  I will not pay one cent for bondage.

73,
Ken N8KH



"Timothy J. Salo" <salo@...>
 

Choose wisely. The life of your project depends upon it. There are
thousands who will not go near it if it is not truly free (as in
speech). We value liberty.
Ideologue alert.

"The life of your project depends upon it."

So much drama.

"Thousands"???

-tjs


"Timothy J. Salo" <salo@...>
 

I suspect that UDR faces pretty much the same challenges in selecting a
processor solution as any other project. First there are the more
fundamental considerations, such as whether a potential solution
meets the needs of the project (e.g., peripheral support, memory,
processor power, software availability, etc. etc.).

Beyond that, there are more prosaic considerations, such as:

o For how long is a processor board expected to be available? I
suspect that the UDR will be available for longer than most
inexpensive processor boards. As a result, the UDR team will
probably need to manage this, perhaps by integrating new processor
boards as availability changes, or by purchasing an inventory of
processor boards. More expensive processor boards may be backed
with a promise that they will be available for at least a certain
period of time or that replacement boards will be drop-in
replacements. Less-expensive boards usually don't come with any
of these sorts of promises.

o I don't know what the UDR specs are, but it may be hard to find
an inexpensive processor board that is designed to operate in harsher
conditions, such as over a wider-than-typical temperature range.

Considerations such as these two may drive an vendor towards building
its own processor board. Of course this merely sifts the problem to
the long-term availability of certain chips, rather than the long-term
availability of certain boards. And, it imposes a cost.

What I would really like to see is a processor board and software
distribution built by and for radio amateurs. Hopefully, this board
could be leveraged across multiple amateur radio projects. This board
ought to be designed to be available for a number of years, and future
boards ought to be drop-in replacements for previous boards (as
processors and memory chips advance). This amateur radio board is
likely to be different than other solutions in that it ought to support
industrial temperature ranges (so people can run the board outside), it
ought to support a bunch of interfaces useful to radio amateurs, and it
doesn't need much display power. I would also like to see a variant of
this board that could be used in satellites and balloons.

It would also be really nice to see a Linux distribution that is
tailored for this board. Among other things, this distribution
ought to support really, really unattended remote operation (think
satellites, where systems may have a dead-man timer and may boot
alternative images, so that you never, ever lose control of the
satellite because of a bad software image).

Of course, I recognize that the impediments to an amateur radio
processor board and software distribution are substantial.

For the record, when I envision an amateur radio processor board,
no, I don't think a PIC will be adequate...

-tjs


Robert Copelan <rcopelan@...>
 

Hmmm... Ken,  Have you homebrewed all of your radios using non-encumbered components?   Do you have a vehicle that has no proprietary components or software?  Do you have a smart phone that is totally open source with no closed source apps?  Are all of the appliances in your kitchen able to be copied without patent issues?    If the answer to any of those questions is yes then we all would like to know what you use so that we can support open source in those areas.     The PI is about as open as I've seen for processor boards in ANY price range.

The life of the project depends on a working processor board that keeps the costs in line and is in line with the goals of the project.   Yes, those who don't like the RPi may use that as a reason not to buy the product but  there will be many more that have no issue and will be happy to see the product being delivered.  
With all due respect,
Robert
WB4DHC
 

On Sat, Mar 28, 2015 at 2:36 AM, dsp_stap@... [UniversalDigitalRadio] <UniversalDigitalRadio@...> wrote:
 

---In UniversalDigitalRadio@..., wrote :

> NW Digital Radio is looking at alternative
> “off the shelf” computer boards. The Raspberry
> Pi 2 is a candidate, but we are still in the
> investigative stage -- no selection has been
> made.

Choose wisely.  The life of your project depends upon it.  There are thousands who will not go near it if it is not truly free (as in speech).  We value liberty.

Without outside free software development, your project goes nowhere.

I'm willing to pay for freedom.  I will not pay one cent for bondage.

73,
Ken N8KH