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Linux Authors: Liz McMillan, Carmen Gonzalez, Ian Khan, Brad Thies, Pat Romanski

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Mentor Graphics Announces Embedded Linux Platform Support for Freescale

Delivers a unified workflow for Freescale customers

Mentor Graphics Corporation on Tuesday announced its support for Freescale Semiconductor’s Advanced Multi-Processing (AMP) Series of QorIQ multicore processors by providing its comprehensive Mentor Embedded Linux platform, open source tools and services, to deliver a unified workflow for Freescale customers. The QorIQ AMP Series provides 28-nanometer process technology, an efficient 64-bit core and highly advanced acceleration engines for optimal performance and power efficiency in processing for networking, industrial and aerospace/military markets.

Freescale customers who are developing Linux-based applications using the AMP Series processors are expected to realize productivity and device performance gains when using the Mentor Embedded Linux platform. Freescale and Mentor Graphics have developed a unified workflow methodology for embedded Linux-based development, enabling customers to create innovative, customized applications with greater productivity and reduced risk.

This fully integrated, vendor-independent solution helps project teams move from prototyping on reference hardware to custom-designed hardware running on commercial Linux and advanced development tools, in a seamless methodology. Coupled with a Freescale reference board, the Mentor Embedded Linux platform provides a smooth transition to help Freescale customers develop customized applications with more reliability, while accelerating design development time.

“Mentor Graphics is the established preferred Freescale partner who has provided embedded Linux solutions to our mutual customers, to ease the challenges of open source development,” said Brett Butler, vice president and general manager of Freescale’s Networking Processor Division. “The Mentor Embedded Linux platform for our next-generation AMP Series of QorIQ processors will streamline the development of embedded multicore applications with greater efficiency and reliability, leading to the opportunity for highly innovative and compelling end products.”

The AMP Series includes 28nm geometries and a new, multi-threaded 64-bit Power Architecture® e6500 core with AltiVec® technology, providing high-bandwidth data processing and algorithmic-intensive computation for high-performance. Additional features in the AMP Series include enhanced acceleration and co-processing technologies and advanced power management features, such as variable-mode power. The first announced product in the AMP series is the QorIQ AMP T4240 device which integrates hardware accelerators with 12 dual-threaded cores for high-end data plane applications. Availability of AMP series products is planned for Q1 2012.

“Mentor’s collaboration with Freescale for embedded Linux development has created a unified engineering methodology that helps our mutual customers develop better technologies with greater productivity and confidence,” stated Glenn Perry, general manager of Mentor Graphics Embedded Software Division. “Freescale’s next-generation AMP Series of QorIQ processors, combined with Mentor Embedded software and tools for Linux development, will advance the development of innovative, high-performance, power-efficient multicore products.”

A key highlight of the Mentor/Freescale alliance is the continuity of workflow offered to the prospective embedded Linux developer. In the past, silicon evaluation was typically performed using the semiconductor-supplied Linux distribution, often without commercial tools or support. As momentum built in a project's lifecycle, developers commonly transitioned to commercial Linux support, often at the cost of time and optimizations with the shift to new and perhaps less familiar tools and build methodologies. By sharing a common build methodology and core optimizations, Freescale and Mentor address this challenge with the Mentor Embedded Linux platform. The platform provides a common build methodology and allows the development team to move to a supported, full-featured commercial distribution with minimal impact to the overall project.

Support and maintenance are crucial to customers, so the Mentor Embedded Linux product includes comprehensive and unlimited support for development tools and core open source technologies. This includes access to the latest, stable and compatible open source technology, with updates on new cores, component versions, and defect resolutions twice per year. Mentor professional services are provided to help Freescale customers address unique product platform needs beyond standard support questions and reference configuration.

The Mentor Graphics Embedded Software Division comprises the Mentor Embedded family of products and services, including embedded software intellectual property (IP), tools, and professional consultant services to help embedded developers and silicon partners optimize their products for design and cost efficiency. The Mentor Embedded team continues to lead the industry with involvement in the open source community and in innovations such as Android beyond mobile handsets, 2D and 3D UI development, open source tools, and multi-OS on multicore architectures. More information on Mentor Embedded products and services can be found at www.mentor.com/embedded.

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