Linux World Paper: Low Cost Embedded Network Appliances
The embedded market includes all intelligent electronic appliances that use a microcontroller or microprocessor. There are already ten times more embedded appliances than desktop personal computers in use today, and this number is projected to grow substantially. According to IDC, the global market for information appliances will grow at a 76% compound annual growth rate from 1998-2002. Moreton Bay's chief software person, Greg Ungerer is presenting a technical paper at the LinuxWorld Expo in San Jose, Calif., on Aug. 11, 1999. In the paper, "Building Low Cost Embedded Network Appliances With Linux," Ungerer presents Linux as the new standard for embedding in internet appliances and internet devices.
Ungerer cited three reasons why Linux will dominate this embedded market.
"To securely communicate over the internet, embedded appliances must be able to protect their privacy. They have to manage protocols for authentication, encryption and validation. The result is that we're seeing much more powerful microprocessors and much more sophisticated operating systems being embedded. Linux is robust. It is rich in features. Yet it is quite clean and agile, and it's ideal for this embedded environment," he said.
"A second force that favors Linux is the fact that embedded appliances are of necessity very cost sensitive. And Linux is of course free."
The third reason to embed Linux, Mr. Ungerer explained, is that the bulk of the cost of developing an embedded appliance solution often lies in the software development.
Mr. Ungerer's paper will take the conference attendees through the details of a specific embedded design project that has been underway at Moreton Bay. As a result of using a standard Linux operating system in this embedded project, the development time was shortened and the result is a quality Internet VPN router product that will be released to market in September.
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