Open Virtual Platform (OVP) Initiative for Multi-Core Software Development Celebrates One Year Anniversary

OVP Movement Gaining Momentum with Widespread Industry Support: Hundreds of Users, Thousands of Downloads, 16 New Processor Models, and Linux Support

THAME, United Kingdom, June 22, 2009-- The Open Virtual Platform (OVP) initiative (www.OVPworld.org), founded by Imperas with the help of 18 companies and individuals from the embedded systems user community, processor intellectual property developers, electronic design automation, service providers and academia, has celebrated its one year anniversary. OVP technology provides solutions to the problems embedded software developers incur when modeling the multi-core system on chip (MPSoC) that hosts their software. Imperas reported that more than 1,200 individuals have registered on the OVP website (www.ovpworld.org) with more than 8,000 downloads of models and tools.

As demand for Multi-Core platforms and MPSoCs increases the need for a suitable, cost effective virtualized software development environment has become critical. “We recognized the weaknesses inherent in the current development environments for software running on multi-core parallel platforms and MPSoCs and the success and support of the OVP initiative has been phenomenal ,” stated Simon Davidmann, president and CEO, Imperas and founding director of the OVP initiative. “We launched OVP a year ago to provide that infrastructure – free open source models and infrastructure focused on multi-core and speed – for simulating the platforms used for embedded software development. Our open virtual platforms provide a vehicle for embedded software developers, deliver complete transparency and control over the software being developed. Simulation technology is the key.”

Imperas reports that the success of OVP is prompting processor vendors, OS providers and embedded systems companies and others to increase adoption of simulation technology and virtual platforms as key components in their development environments. Nine companies and institutions have already added their support to the original founding companies bringing the OVP membership to 27 companies. These include: Cadence, CriticalBlue, Denali, EVE, Forte, MIPS, SpringSoft, Tensilica, Doulos, PosedgeSoftware, VinChip.

“The ease with which users can utilize OVP to build a virtual platform, then integrate OVPsim with Cadence’s Incisive Software eXtensions product, enables much more rigorous and robust verification of hardware/software interactions.” Said Ran Avinun, Group Marketing Director at Cadence. Avinun continued “System and software developers can now take the same industry leading verification technology and methodology being used on the design of their SoC for verification of the virtual platform before sharing it with application developers, or of the complete application software system.”

“Developing software for complex SoCs demands the use of extremely fast virtual platforms and the success of open virtual platforms is addressing these unique requirements,” commented Davidmann. “The availability of fast, vendor certified processor models and the growing library of open source components and platforms demonstrates that the embedded system community recognizes that OVP can help make software developers more productive, ensure higher quality software and dramatically reduce development costs for MPSoCs.”

Chezi Ganesan, President & CEO of VinChip Systems, Inc., said: "VinChip, an established developer of hardware IP cores, believes that there is significant opportunity in developing models at a higher level of abstraction. Open Virtual Platforms enables IP providers like VinChip to add more value to our product line."

Year One Milestones:
The primary OVP objective is to enable the industry to build a suitable and effective multi-core virtual platform software development infrastructure. Year one OVP Milestones include:
• the development of 16 processor models
• the addition of a native interface to the SystemC/Transaction Level Modeling (TLM)-2.0 interface
• the availability of platforms that boot operating systems, including multi-core SMP Linux running faster than real time,
• the verification of processor models by 2 major vendors including the MIPS32 4K, 24K and 34K families being MIPS-Verified™ by MIPS Technologies and the ARC® 605 being verified by ARC International.
• research projects utilizing OVP by the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi and the University of Southampton
• the donation of open source peripheral and behavioral models to the OVP community, available for free download from the website
• the integration of other tools to the Open Virtual Platforms simulator (OVPsim) for enhanced software functional and performance verification, including Cadence’s Incisive Software eXtensions (ISX)
In related news, the success of OVPsim on Windows and requests from the OVP user base for Linux hosted machines has led to its release for non-commercial usage.

Open Virtual Platforms
OVP includes the OVPsim simulator, libraries of models and APIs for developing new models. OVPsim executes platforms, including multicore platforms, at hundreds of millions of instructions per second, providing the speed that software developers require for simulation of embedded systems. Model libraries include everything from individual processor and component models to more complex platforms, such as MIPS Malta development board for running Linux. APIs enable the community to develop models of processors, behavioral components and peripherals, and to connect these together into virtual platforms that run the final target system software binaries unchanged.

About the OVP Initiative (www.OVPworld.org)
The OVP initiative was founded with a donation by Imperas of approximately $4 million of simulation infrastructure. The goal of organization is to help the industry to build an effective multi-core development infrastructure through the use and adoption of open virtual platform technology. The website (www.OVPworld.org) serves as a portal for OVP members covering details about the technology, providing a discussion forum for the community, and links to download each component. The technology has the support of electronic design automation (EDA) companies, end users and silicon intellectual property (IP) providers.

About Imperas (www.imperas.com)
Imperas provides methodologies, technologies and products to enable the efficient and effective verification of software functionality and software performance for embedded systems. Its products enable software functional verification, performance profiling, and various analytical tools for embedded software operating on multiprocessor MP SoCs. With an engineering base in the United Kingdom, Imperas distributes its products to customers worldwide. For more information, visit www.imperas.com.
Detailed quotations regarding OVP from all 27 companies are available from:  here.

Imperas acknowledge trademarks or registered trademarks of other organizations for their respective products and services.

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