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Virtutech Defines Full Systems Virtualized Development With Simics 4.2
Virtutech®, Inc., the leader in virtualized systems development (VSD), today announced Simics® 4.2, the only simulation platform powerful and flexible enough to support full system simulation at the OEM product level. Simics 4.2 includes an upgraded Simics Accelerator 2.0™ for improved scalability, an Eclipse user interface and an API to Simics, modeling connectivity with TLM 2.0 and IP-XACT, Hybrid Simulation and new support for Enea’s real-time operating system Enea OSETM.

“Virtutech is a recognized expert in virtualizing electronics systems and its extensive experience with high performance computing, electronic systems developers, networking equipment vendors and semiconductor manufacturers makes the company an ideal partner,” said Marcus Hjortsberg, vice president RTOS Products at Enea. “The combination of our Enea OSE real-time operating system and Virtutech Simics will provide a faster, interoperable, more scalable solution for OEMs, which will allow them to dramatically streamline their testing and increase product production cycles.”

Virtutech Simics 4.2 provides one of the most advanced and expansive libraries of components for virtual systems development platforms on the market. Building on the product’s early success, Simics offers a flexible, expansive full-system simulator that reaches beyond the boundaries of testing and debugging to a broad community of users. This will enable electronics systems development organizations to more efficiently manage their entire product development lifecycle, not only isolated components, resulting in significant savings across the total cost of ownership (TCO) and accelerating the delivery of higher quality software and systems.

“Electronic systems developers can leverage virtualization broadly to optimize increasingly complex electronic systems designs, meet ever-shorter development cycles, deliver services and achieve benefits across the organization,” said Kaveh Massoudian, chief technology officer at Power.org. “However, for companies to fully utilize the powerful capabilities and advantages from full-system simulation there must be a fundamental new approach to software development that can only be accommodated by the establishment of a comprehensive set of standards, solutions and scalability. Power.org is leading this standardization effort and applauds its members like Virtutech, who continue to provide the essential outside-the-box thinking for the greater benefit of all customers and ecosystem partners.”

Virtutech Simics 4.2 offers the following value added enhancements to provide customers with expanded platform support, an unmatched level of efficiency, further scalability, virtual platform interoperability and design flow throughout the product lifecycle:

  • Total Scalability: Simics 4.2 includes the enhanced Simics Accelerator™ 2.0, which utilizes any multicore hosts available in the network to developers to accelerate simulation of large target systems through parallelization techniques. Supporting distributed multithreading simulation along networked computers, Simics Accelerator 4.2 distributes the simulation session over an extended network of host servers, where each host machine can be equipped with several central processing units (CPU) or cores. The Simics Accelerator enables system engineers to optimize simulation performance by dynamically balancing simulation workload across a given number of host cores within each machine and to take full advantage of a powerful distributed multicore host environment to speed and scale up a simulation.
  • Interoperability with OSCI models: A new feature of Simics 4.2 is the SystemC Bridge. This enables existing TLM 2.0 coded in SystemC models to be included as part of a Simics simulation. As a result, a Simics virtual platform could potentially mix native Simics DML models, C models, Python models as well as SystemC/C++ device models. Through the SystemC Bridge, developers can rapidly build complete virtual platforms by taking advantage of Virtutech’s extensive library of fast functional models and combine them with third-party models.
  • Interoperability with hardware artifacts: Simics 4.2 supports the IP-XACT from The SPIRIT Consortium™ versions 1.2 and 1.4. One of the key features of Simics 4.2 is the expansive model availability with the added convenience of re-using artifacts. Using the import – export capability provided by Simics Model Builder, hardware architects can now connect to DML through the IP-XACT standard from the SPIRIT Consortium and generate an IP-XACT register description from a Simics DML template file. This DML code provides the means to extract and produce an IP-XACT file with register descriptions.
  • Design Flow: Simics 4.2 offers an Eclipse user interface and API to Simics, which expand the Virtutech partnership ecosystem and take simulation to a new level by delivering a more open, standards-based VSD platform. The Eclipse plug-in provides powerful viewers of the simulated target, registers and memory. Via the plug-in, register names, banks and values as well as memory content and mappings can easily be inspected. The licensed API also can be used to integrate Simics with Eclipse-based customer toolsets; both large enterprise OEM companies as well as manufacturers of IDE tools can use it to tie virtualized development into their workflow.

“Traditionally, electronics virtualization players have focused on EDA and ESL. This only enables a narrow focus with a limited number of use cases,” said Michel Genard, vice president of marketing for Virtutech. “With Simics 4.2, Virtutech continues to expand the capabilities of its virtualization platform in order to bring the benefits of virtualization and fast simulation to an ever larger community. Simics enables customers to transform their product life cycle (PLC) by providing a full system view of the electronic system they are developing. Time and time again our customers are reporting that VSD enables them to gain productivity and quality from development to sales enablement far beyond their initial use cases.”

Simics 4.2 also opens up the Simics Hybrid Simulation capability, originally announced in June 2008 for the Freescale QorIQ™ P4080 microprocessor. Simics Hybrid Simulation enables device and processor models with different detail levels to be mixed in a single simulation Simics system. This allows for both fast software development and system architecture validation well in advance of hardware design or availability as well as detailed performance analysis of the system in the same environment.

“The increasing sophistication of embedded hardware platforms, including the migration toward networked, multiprocessor systems and multi-core hardware environments, is driving new opportunities within the virtual system prototyping/simulation tools market,” says Matt Volckmann, program manager, VDC Research. “Virtutech’s release of Simics 4.2 targets key issues that VDC agrees will play a significant role in the ongoing advancement to market, including the enablement of greater model availability and interoperability, and the tighter integration with existing software development environments.”

Published Tuesday, March 31, 2009 6:59 PM by David Marshall
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