eCosCentric announces NAND library and YAFFS file system support for eCos and RedBoot

Embedded Systems Conference

(PresseBox) ( Boston, USA, )
eCosCentric has developed a NAND flash library and driver architecture, and a port of the respected YAFFS NAND file system for the eCos real-time operating system and eCos-based RedBoot bootloader.

In an agreement with Aleph One - the owners of YAFFS, eCosCentric becomes the exclusive licensor of the YAFFS file system for eCos. YAFFS is freely available under a GPL license, and for companies that wish to avoid the strictures of the full GPL license, an alternative commercial license is available through eCosCentric. Aleph One remains the licensor for all other systems.

YAFFS is specifically designed for use with NAND flash memory, optimized for speed and to ensure reliability and longevity. NAND is an inherently unreliable storage medium and the NAND library and YAFFS take multiple complementary approaches to maximise its usable life, and detect and correct errors as they occur. These include:

-Log structured file system design
-Dynamic wear levelling
-Error Correcting Codes (ECC)
-Bad block management
-Checkpoint support for fast mounting

The NAND library has been designed to manage bad block handling in a manner compatible with the Linux MTD layer. YAFFS support has also been incorporated into the eCos-based RedBoot bootloader. These features coupled with YAFFS's existing wide use within the embedded Linux space provides for a common high-level storage medium shared between the two, helping to simplify embedded Linux system installation, updates and maintenance.

Laurie van Someren, Managing Director of Aleph One, remarked that "The partnership with eCosCentric has been an excellent match of open source business models and technology. We have been very happy to see eCosCentric perform a superlative job of the integration, testing and delivery of YAFFS for eCos. Working together we have been able to achieve more than we would separately. The development work and partnership extends the reach of YAFFS to applications which would not otherwise have been possible".

Paul Beskeen, Chairman of eCosCentric, noted that "The NAND library and YAFFS combination is a solid technical and commercial solution that fulfils customer demand for raw NAND support in eCos, further broadening our file system portfolio". File system support now encompasses: FATfs, YAFFS, JFFS2, MMFS (multimedia), RAMfs and ROMfs. These enable the use of SD/SDHC/MMC/CF memory cards, USB memory sticks, raw NAND and NOR flash, and hard disk based storage media with eCos.

This development assists the industry trend of embedding NAND devices into ever more deeply embedded designs. The combination of the eCos NAND layer and YAFFS provides the functionality, small resource footprint, performance and reliability required for this market sector.

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