Embedded Linux with continuous integration and automated testing for enhanced development
The company in Manchester, UK, has launched both Baserock Embedded Linux software as an open source release codenamed “Secret Volcano” and the Baserock.org support site.
The “Secret Volcano” release provides virtual machine images for developers and a sample base image to demonstrate a Baserock-produced small system image and provides the proven benefits of continuous integration (CI) to Linux system development that were only available to developers of server and web-based applications.
Baserock also incorporates automated testing for software development into the CI process. It reduces the time to market of electronics products by increasing engineering team productivity and lowering the complexity and cost of long term maintenance. Access to the open source project is available at www.baserock.org with a commercial version, including additional services and support, to follow.
The Baserock build system promotes the principles of continuous integration (CI) through the entire process of Linux systems development. Using CI, Baserock makes it easier to develop Linux-based systems and to integrate system components. Products can be kept up-to-date, maintained and improved through continuous delivery (CD). Baserock will make it faster to reproduce a specific build as well as speeding up the process of upgrading and rolling back between different versions of systems, all at a lower cost than existing approaches.
Baserock source code is available for building on 64-bit x86 and for ARM systems. Virtual machine binaries are available for 64-bit x86 machines. Through native compilation of software and images, Baserock will provide a robust and highly efficient build environment which is as closely aligned to upstream development environments as possible.
“Baserock will enable silicon chipset and board vendors as well as Original Device Manufacturers and Systems Integrators to keep pace with the rapid development of Linux and dramatically reduce product development cycles”, says Paul Sherwood, CEO of Codethink. “In addition, we recognise that many ARM based systems developers would prefer to develop and build on ARM systems but today have to cross-compile from x86 processors. We have therefore developed a hardware solution to address this issue and will be announcing the availability of our ARM server imminently.”
The Baserock Embedded Linux software comprises four primary components:
Trove – an integrated source code control system combining a Git-based repository and a service that converts upstream source in whatever form to Git and synchronising upstream changes into the Baserock hosted repositories.
Mason – a continuous integration and delivery service which monitors Git repositories for changes to any components of the system being developed, builds all the necessary binary objects and tests them using a battery of automated tests provided by Codethink or implemented by the customer
Morph – a build system and workflow tool which provides system branching and merging. It provides a radical improvement for system development using continuous delivery principles.
Trebuchet – a toolset for preparing and efficiently deploying system upgrades to devices.