Characteristics of Embedded Operating Systems


Date Posted: 3/20/2013 6:15:18 AM

Posted By: SimonMburu  Membership Level: Gold  Total Points: 4203

An embedded system is a combination of computer hardware and software, and maybe additional mechanical or other parts, designed to perform a dedicated function. In many cases embedded systems are part of a larger system example the antilock braking system in a car. Embedded Operating Systems are the digital part of these embedded systems, and they play similar roles to their systems just like how the Operating System manages computer resources and functionalities.
Here are some common features of most embedded operating systems.

1. They have a fast and lightweight process or thread switching mechanism.
2. They have a small size in terms of storage capacity.
3. They provide primitives to delay processing by a fixed amount of time and to suspend or resume execution.
4. They have the ability to maintain a real-time clock.
5. They provide a fixed or variable sized partitions for memory management as well as the ability to lock code and maintain memory.
6. They possess the ability to minimize intervals during which interrupts are disabled.
7. They contain mechanisms that provide for special alarms and timeouts.
8. They provide bounded execution time for most primitives.
9. They support the traditional real-time queuing disciplines such as earliest deadline first and primitives for jamming a message into the front of a queue.
10. They have quick response to external interrupts, typically a response time less than 10 microseconds.
11. Their scheduling policy is real time and dispatcher module is part of scheduler instead of separate component.
12. They provide special sequential files that can accumulate data at a fast rate.


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