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Wasabi ports NetBSD to the SuperH 64-bit SH-5 processor

By Jeremy C. Reed

Wasabi Systems, a provider of embedded BSD products and services, today announced completion of a port of NetBSD to the 64-bit SH-5 processor from SuperH, Inc., on the Cayman Development System. In June, Wasabi Systems became a founding member of the SuperH Partner Program for providing services to SuperH Licensees.

NetBSD is the first commercially available operating system to run on the SH-5 platform.

"We're very impressed with the speed of Wasabi's porting efforts," said Jon Frosdick, Director of Software Engineering at SuperH, Inc.

Ideally suited for system-on-chip (SOC) designs and embedded applications, the SH-5 provides a feature-rich platform for designers developing set-top boxes, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), game consoles, networking and telephony applications, multimedia appliances and car infotainment systems.

"With its 64-bit SIMD architecture and SHmedia instruction set, the SH-5 is well-positioned to be a CPU of choice for next-generation multimedia devices," said Alistair Crooks, Wasabi's Director of Engineering.

NetBSD, the world's most portable operating system, is widely used in embedded devices, and can greatly reduce time to market for OEMs using the SH-5 in their appliances.

"NetBSD's scalability and rich Unix functionality make it an attractive choice for our mutual customers," said Frosdick.

NetBSD/evbsh5 is the first port of NetBSD to the SH-5 cpu architecture. It is in the NetBSD-current CVS repository. The code under sys/arch/sh5 is the cpu support and drivers for on-chip devices; and sys/arch/evbsh5 is where the board-specific code lives.

The port was designed from the start to be capable of being built for both 32- and 64-bit enviroments, said Steve Woodford, who did the porting work. "At this time, a 64-bit kernel/userland works every bit as well as the 32-bit code."

The Cayman Development System is the first piece of real SH-5 hardware and will be used by SuperH licensees to develop their eval boards, said David Damast of Wasabi Systems.

Cayman's PCIbus is fully supported and has been tested with a number of devices using NetBSD's generic, machine-independent drivers including audio, scsi, and ethernet cards, said Woodford.

The SH-5 is bi-endian, via a boot-time option. The Cayman eval board is little-endian by default, so that is the mode the kernel runs in, said Woodford.

For more information on the SH-5, see

Wasabi Systems joins Super-H Partner Program
NetBSD version 1.6 released
Daemon News: NetBSD Board of Directors elected


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September 16, 2013 11:24:29

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