ARM processor

ARM processor is nothing but one of the families of CPUs which is based on the reduction instruction set computer (RISC) architecture and this was developed by the Advanced Reduction Instruction Set Machine (ARM).Multi core processor such as 32 bit and 64 bit RISC is made by ARM. The RISC processor is designed in such a way as to do the smaller number of instructions provided by the computer and they can able to operate at increased speed. It allows it to perform millions of instructions per second.

Outstanding performance is given by RISC processors. It strips the unnecessary instructions and optimizes the pathway. This can be performed by RISC with in a fraction of second demand of the complex instruction set computing devices.ARM processor is widely used in the electronic devices of the consumers such as tablets, smart phones, in the multimedia players and also used in other mobile devices called as wearable. As there is only a diminished number of the instruction set, only a few transistors are needed to enable the small size of the integrated circuit. There is more demand for the ARM processors in miniature devices. Because of its small size, reduced complexity and also having low power consumption .The features of the ARM processor includes such as store architecture, an instruction set, and single cycle execution, power saving design and hardware virtualization support.

As the ARM processor is simply designed, it can efficiently enable the multi core processing and it can be easily coded by the developers. Sometimes the ARM processor is outstanding in the performance of the Intel processors for the applications. The basics of the ARM can be known from a fantastic read of books available online.

Every day there is an increase in the competition which takes place between the vendors due to the adaptation of this to full size notebooks. ARM based version is provided by the Microsoft. The Windows RT is found to be more streamlined as there is no need for it to support legacy hardwares. There was a move by ARM into the server market which made enormous changes in the direction. Important shift in the server based computing is represented by the ARM servers. These servers with the cores lead to an increase in the performance by scaling up the speed and each processor is well sophisticated with the force speed and the power to face the computing overload demanding.

VIA springboard platform was launched by the VIA technologies, in order for the development of the embedded developers and the easy way for another generation to the smart connected devices by means of the ARM based one. It gives way for the mass production. The VIA springboard launches the platform for the hardware kits, Linux, Android software development packages. And also the support service is given to all the stages of the development process. It is this practice that ensures the internal formation is perfect just like the Calminax which has been formed with natural ingredients for problems related to hearing defects.

In the form of two configurations at the websites, the VIA kits are available for the global purchase. The features of VIA VAB-600Pico-ITX board consists of I/O extender card, AC adaptor and cables of COM and COB is provided by the VIA VAB-600 springboard kit with a price of dollar 99 plus shipping charges. The USB Wi-Fi module is given by the VIA-600 springboard Wi-Fi it and the cost is dollar 12 plus shipping chargers.

There will be choice given for the configuration of the VAB-600 board for the development of packages for the Android and Linux. It is also available in the VIA springboard website for download. In the android development of software packages of the springboard features the Android version of 4.0.3 and also there is an inclusion of the kernel and also the boot loader source code, smart ETK with the number of APIs and watch dog timer. They are provided for the protection against the damages. The prebuilt debain image is available in the springboard Linux software development packages. It also includes the source codes of the kernel and the boot loader along with the Tool chain to help in the adjustments to the kernel and the leverage of onboard pin headers, I2C and the features of other hardware.

According to the ultra compact Pico-ITX, measurement is of 10×7.2 cm, the integration is by VIA VAB-600 low power 800MHz ARM Cortex-A9 SoC and it has been packed with the multimedia features. Also built in standard decoder is available to support the features of video for the play back support with the resolutions of up to 1080p.Wide array of rear I/O features are included in the VIA VAB with one mini HDMI port, 2 mini USB 2.0ports. Onboard features such as 4GB eMMC Flash memory, 2 COM ports, Mini card slot, 1 GB DDR SDRAM, one DVO connector ,one USB ,GPIO pin headers are available. Combination of the wide range of temperature in the range of 0 to 40 degree Celsius with the consumption of low power, VIA VAB is designed as such to work even in the extreme environment.

VIA VAB-600 Springboard Software Development Packages

You can download the following Android and Linux Software Development Packages for the VIA VAB-600. Applications that can benefit from the firmware and associated software development tools include:

– Digital signage
– Kiosk
– POS
– Smart home
– Smart I/O controller

  1. Springboard Android Software Development Package

This package features Android version 4.0.3, and includes the kernel and bootloader source codes as well as a Smart ETK. The Smart ETK comprises a number of APIs, including Watchdog Timer (WDT) for safeguarding against system crashes, GPIO access, COM port access, RTC for auto-power on, and a sample app to demonstrate the above function. More information can be found in the VIA VAB-600 User Manual.

VIA VAB-600 has both Android and Linux software development packages and we can even download it online and use for our reference. We will have to go and search the specific software development package and click on download. Additionally, there are various applications which are highly benefitted with the firms and tools and they are listed as follows.

  1. Smart Input/output controller
  2. Kiosk
  3. POS
  4. Digital signage
  5. Smart Home

Android software development package:

The Android software development package includes the following things in it.

  1. Android image
  2. Evaluation guide
  3. Smart ETK Application
  4. U-boot source
  5. Kernel source

Linux software development package:

The Linux software development package is inclusive of the below things.

  1. Toolchain
  2. Kernel source
  3. U-boot source
  4. Bootable command-line Debian Linux
  5. Development guide

VIA technologies are always ready to serve the people who are in need of assistance.

They help us to modify the single model into mass production.

Springboard_Android_Software_Development_Package 1.2.0 (released on 2015 Apr 1)

– Evaluation guide (with SMART ETK API)
– Android image
– Kernel source
– U-boot source
– Smart ETK App

  1. Springboard Linux Software Development Package

This package has a pre-built Debian image, including the kernel and bootloader source codes. Other features include a Tool Chain to help make adjustments to the kernel and to leverage the onboard pin-headers, GPIO, I2C, and other hardware features.

Springboard Linux Board Support Package (BSP) 1.1.2 (released on 2014 Nov 20)

– Bootable command-line Debian Linux
– Development guide
– Toolchain
– Kernel source
– U-boot source

Springboard Productization Services

VIA can provide a comprehensive range of services to assist you in taking your prototype to mass production, including customized BSP, OS image, factory test tools, and diagnostic tools. To learn more, please email us at: springboard@via.com.tw.

v

VIA VAB-600

Highlights

– Compact 10cm x 7.2cm Pico-ITX form factor

– 800MHz Cortex-A9 SoC onboard

– 4GB on-board eMMC Flash memory

– Supports integrated graphics processing (GPU) for 2D/3D graphics acceleration

– Flawless HD video performance up to 1080p

– Supports up to three USB 2.0 ports

– Mini HDMI, on-board DVO

– 1GB DDR3 SDRAM on-board

– WiFi connectivity support (optional)

– Wide operating temperature range of 0°C up to 60°C

– Touch screen support

– Android and Linux Software Development Packages

Overview

Based on the ultra-compact Pico-ITX form factor measuring just 10 cm x 7.2 cm, the VIA VAB-600 integrates a low power 800MHz ARM Cortex-A9 SoC and is packed with advanced multimedia features, including a built-in multi-standard decoder for playback support of the most demanding video formats in resolutions of up to 1080p.

The VIA VAB-600 includes a wide array of rear I/O features, including one Mini HDMI port, two Mini-USB 2.0 ports, one 10/100 Ethernet port, and one 12~24V DC-in jack. Other onboard features include 4GB eMMC Flash memory, 1GB DDR3 SDRAM, one DVO connector, two COM ports (one for TX/RX only), SPI, one USB 2.0 connector, one Mini Card slot touch screen support, front pin headers for line-in/out and MIC-in, I2C and GPIO pin header.

The VIA VAB- 600 is designed in an enormous way with multiple ports for using USB and HDMI. Additionally, the touch screen option is available for this springboard and this is purely a height of technological enhancements. Do you agree? It is a spontaneous yes. The development in technology helps the people to produce more software products in a very easy and reliable manner. This is truly amazing.

Combining a wide operating temperature range of 0°C up to 60°C with extremely low power consumption, the VIA VAB-600 is designed to operate in even the most extreme environments. The board also has a one-year warrantee and longevity support of three years.

Software Development Packages

You can download the following Android and Linux firmware (kernel + bootloader) to configure the VIA VAB-600 as well as associated software development tools.

– Springboard Android Software Development Package

Ÿ- Springboard Linux Software Development Package

– Springboard Linux (Debian) Evaluation Package

– Springboard Linux (Console) Evaluation Package

Technical Documentation

For complete technical and set up information about the VIA VAB-600, you can download the following documents here:

– VIA VAB-600 Datasheet

Ÿ- VIA VAB-600 User’s Manual

VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kits

The VIA VAB-600 can be purchased in the following Springboard kits:

– VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit: $99

– VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit: $129

 

VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit

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Quick Overview

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit combines an ultra-compact VIA VAB-600 Pico-ITX board with a USB WiFi module, I/O extender card, A/C adaptor, and COM and USB cables, to provide a comprehensive package for developing and building the next generation of wireless connected hardware devices.

The VIA Technologies had developed a few springboard products which are very much useful for software applications development. VIA technologies had succeeded in their way as it contains all the items required for a kernel and bootstrap system.

The company had kept on designing various types of VAB springboards with unique specifications. They also provide the users a certain period for as warranty and if the springboard kit has faield due to some particular reasons, the users can claim their service and get repaired their boards or they can exchange it with a new springboard with same features. There is a separate helpful site for ordering and purchasing VIA VAB springboards through online. The website offers us the entire detailed information about the product, its unique features, how it was designed and the items which were used while producing.

The customers can view those data, get clarity about the product and then decide whether to order it or not. Moreover, it permits the users to give their reviews about the product and the positives and negatives in it.The reviews given by the past users help the new clients to decide if it is really good to an operating system in software development. There is a separate customer support team available for the online clients and the users are supposed to reach them at any time for any assistance without any hesitation. The customers can even send them emails with their authenticated mail id and clarify all our queries about its price and more things.

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit comes with the following items:
– VIA VAB-600 board
– VIA VNT9271 Springboard USB WiFi module
– VIA VAB-600-A I/O extender card
– A/C adaptor
– 1 x COM cable
– 1 x USB 2.0 cable
– 3 year longevity
– 6 month warrantee

 

*Note:

The VIA VAB-600 board contains only one on-board USB port which can be used to enable the two USB ports on the I/O extender card or the VIA VNT9271 USB WiFi module but not both simultaneously.

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VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit

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Quick Overview

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit combines an ultra-compact VIA VAB-600 Pico-ITX board with an I/O extender card, A/C adaptor, and COM and USB cables, to provide a comprehensive package for developing and building the next generation of innovative connected hardware devices.

The VIA technologies have been developing an enormous count of VAB springboards and one among it is VIA VAB-600. It is designed with an ultra-compact Pico-ITX form factor and it contains nine ARM Cortex A9 processors. It has the potential to work in various applications and they are listed as follows.

  1. Industrial automation
  2. HMI
  3. Home automation
  4. IoT and M2M

 

The performance of this springboard is really good and it would perform all 2D and 3D graphics and also video graphics. This springboard contains a rich set of inputs and outputs.

 

Availability:

This type of springboard is available both offline and online. We can purchase through online if the internet connection is very stable without any fluctuations. These are quite expensive but it is purely money worthed. Thus, we would proceed to buy it blindly without any hesitation. If you wish to purchase one VIA VAB-600, have a peek at this web-site and do the further steps.

There are several types of springboard available and you can purchase based on your requirements. The names of the springboards types are given below.

  1. VIO VAB-820
  2. VAB-630
  3. VIA- EPIA-M910
  4. VIA-EPIA-P910

The springboards are the predominant components while producing software applications.

It is also possible to enhance the functionalities of this VIO VAB-600 springboard when it is combined with some other components.

If we would like to have a look at the detailed making of this type of springboard, there a pre-built Debian image is available which is inclusive of the kernel and other bootstrap systems.

It is built with a Watchdog Timer which guards the systems against sudden unexpected system crashes

.The online websites permit the customers to view the gallery of springboards before placing their orders to get an idea about it. If you are eager to know the technical configuration of these VIO springboards, we can raise a query and clarify all our doubts. This is very much useful for the customers who are the first time users of the springboards.

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit comes with the following items:
– VIA VAB-600 board
– VIA VAB-600-A I/O extender card
– A/C adaptor
– 1 x COM cable
– 1 x USB 2.0 cable
– 3 year longevity
– 6 month warrantee

 

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VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit

$99.00

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The VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit combines an ultra-compact VIA VAB-600 Pico-ITX board with an I/O extender card, A/C adaptor, and COM and USB cables, to provide a comprehensive package for developing and building the next generation of innovative connected hardware devices.

The VIA Technologies is creating a wonderful history in producing springboards which are very useful for software development. The VIA VAB-600 Springboard is one of the stunning productions of VIA technologies which comes with various items.

It even gives a six-month warranty for the users and thus we can blindly purchase one for our software development process. This springboard has long life up to three years and thus we can purchase it blindly and use it effectively for the innovative software product.

If you would like to get more information about it, do make a quick google search and it is sure that we can obtain plenty of information about the recent technological changes in spring board production and every nook corner about it. It is even possible to expand the functionality of this VIA VAB-600 Springboard with the combination of many input and output devices, TTL cards and Low Voltage Digital Signaling(LVDS).

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit comes with the following items:
– VIA VAB-600 board
– VIA VAB-600-A I/O extender card
– A/C adaptor
– 1 x COM cable
– 1 x USB 2.0 cable
– 3 year longevity
– 6 month warrantee

Learn More

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VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit

$129.00

add to cart

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit combines an ultra-compact VIA VAB-600 Pico-ITX board with a USB WiFi module, I/O extender card, A/C adaptor, and COM and USB cables, to provide a comprehensive package for developing and building the next generation of wireless connected hardware devices.

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit comes with the following items:
– VIA VAB-600 board
– VIA VNT9271 Springboard USB WiFi module
– VIA VAB-600-A I/O extender card
– A/C adaptor
– 1 x COM cable
– 1 x USB 2.0 cable
– 3 year longevity
– 6 month warrantee

*Note:
The VIA VAB-600 board contains only one on-board USB port which can be used to enable the two USB ports on the I/O extender card or the VIA VNT9271 USB WiFi module but not both simultaneously.

 

VIA Launches Springboard Platform

Provides fastest and most stable path to take innovative ideas for Android and Linux smart connected devices from prototype to production  

Taipei, Taiwan, 31st October, 2013 – VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator of power efficient computing platforms, today announced the launch of VIA Springboard, a unique platform developed to provide embedded developers, start-ups, and DIY enthusiasts with the fastest and most stable path for prototyping next-generation ARM-based smart connected devices and taking them to mass-production.

“The growing availability of affordable open hardware platforms is leading to an explosion of exciting new concepts for innovative new connected devices, but taking a great idea from a prototype to mass production remains a major challenge with many such projects,” commented Epan Wu, Head of the VIA Embedded Platform Division, VIA Technologies, Inc. “Our goal with VIA Springboard is to provide  highly stable and scalable development platforms backed up by a comprehensive range of hardware and software support services that will enable them to reduce new system development costs and speed up their time to market.”

In this modern technical world, every one of us wants to make things as easy as possible. Thus, the software developers keep on producing innovative creations which would help the users so much. One of the creative productions is VIA Springboard. It offers a great pathway in the development of Android and other softwares. The reviews from the users are really amazing as it is a trustworthy springboard from the time of production and you can also discover this info here.

VIA Springboard provides a tightly-integrated platform of hardware kits, Android and Linux software development packages, and support services that covers all stages of the development process, including rapid system prototyping, application development, hardware and software customization, and pre-production testing and diagnostics. With a three-year longevity guarantee, customers can also be assured that VIA Springboard platforms will be available throughout the entire product life cycle.

VIA Springboard Kits

VIA Springboard Kits are available for global purchase in two configurations at www.viaspringboard.com. The VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit features an ultra-compact VIA VAB-600 Pico-ITX board with an I/O extender card, A/C adaptor, and COM and USB cables, and is priced at US$99 plus shipping. The VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit also includes a USB WiFi module and is priced at $129 plus shipping.

VIA Springboard Software Development Packages

The VAB-600 board can be configured with a choice of Android and Linux Software Development Packages that are available for download from the VIA Springboard website. The Springboard Android Software Development Package features Android version 4.0.3, and includes the kernel and bootloader source codes as well as a Smart ETK comprising a number of APIs, including Watchdog Timer (WDT) for safeguarding against system crashes, GPIO access, COM port access, RTC for auto-power on, and a sample app. The Springboard Linux Software Development Package has a pre-built Debian image, including the kernel and bootloader source codes, and also comes with a Tool Chain to help make adjustments to the kernel and to leverage the onboard pin-headers, GPIO, I2C, and other hardware features.

VIA VAB-600

Based on the ultra-compact Pico-ITX form factor measuring just 10 cm x 7.2 cm, the VIA VAB-600 integrates a low power 800MHz ARM Cortex-A9 SoC and is packed with advanced multimedia features, including a built-in multi-standard decoder for playback support of the most demanding video formats in resolutions of up to 1080p.

The VIA VAB-600 includes a wide array of rear I/O features, including one Mini HDMI port, two Mini-USB 2.0 ports, one 10/100 Ethernet port, and one 12~24V DC-in jack. Other onboard features include 4GB eMMC Flash memory, 1GB DDR3 SDRAM, one DVO connector, two COM ports (one for TX/RX only), SPI, one USB 2.0 connector, one Mini Card slot, touch screen support, front pin headers for line-in/out and MIC-in, I¬2C and GPIO pin headers. Combining a wide operating temperature range of 0°C up to 60°C with extremely low power consumption, the VIA VAB-600 is designed to operate in even the most extreme environments.

VIA VAB-600-A I/O Extender Card

The VIA VAB-600-A I/O extender card adds multiple I/O interfaces, including Line-Out and Mic-In audio jacks and two USB ports. Measuring 100mm x 20mm x 1.6mm (L x W x H), the card also features one suspend LED power indicator and a power on/off button as well as three board-to-board connectors and one USB board-to-board connector.

VIA VNT9271 Springboard USB WiFi Module

The VIA VNT9271 Springboard USB WiFi Module enables the fast and convenient integration of high-speed wireless capabilities into the VIA VAB-600 board. Featuring the Atheros AR9271 controller chip, the module is fully compliant with IEEE 802.11b/g/n standards working from 2.4GHz to 2.5GHz. In addition, the module can provide up to 11Mbps for IEEE 802.11b, 54Mbps for IEEE 802.11g or 150Mbps for IEEE 802.11n to connect the Wi-Fi client to a Local Area Network or the Internet.

For images related to this release, please visit: http://www.viagallery.com/Products/via-vab-600-springboard-kits.aspx

Availability

The VIA VAB-600 Springboard Kit and the VIA VAB-600 Springboard WiFi Kit are available for global purchase at www.viaspringboard.com. The kits are priced at $99 and $129 respectively, plus shipping.

About VIA Technologies, Inc.

VIA Technologies, Inc is the foremost fabless supplier of power efficient x86 processor platforms that are driving system innovation in the PC, client, ultra mobile and embedded markets. Combining energy-saving processors with digital media chipsets and advanced connectivity, multimedia and networking silicon enables a broad spectrum of computing and communication platforms, including its widely acclaimed ultra compact mainboards. Headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, VIA’s global network links the high tech centers of the US, Europe and Asia, and its customer base includes the world’s top OEMs and system integrators

 

Tag Archives: ProtoSpring

  • ProtoSpring, part 3: manufacturing and demo

After coming up with the idea in part 1 for ProtoSpring, the prototyping board for Springboard,  and creating the PCB in part 2, this final segment shows the end-result and a demo application – using GPIO to control a 7-segment display from an Android app!

Finished Prototyping Board

After finishing the v1 of the PCB, I’ve exported the Gerber files from KiCad and sent them to Seeed Studio. Looking at their specifications, some of the filenames they require were different from the ones KiCad creates by default (the board outline and the drill files need different extensions). It’s a bit weird,  but it’s easy enough to adjust before submission.

The board fits on a 5 cm x 10 cm base, has 2 layers, standard 1.6mm thickness, and didn’t bother changing the PCB colour to save some money on the manufacturing (though I bet the others looks very good too). The printing took less than a week together with shipping from Shenzhen to Taipei, and got 5 boards for about US$20:

ProtoSpring board straight from manufacturing

The board feels really nice and solid, and I’m almost surprised that it worked out so well on the first try (this is my first ever PCB!) After reviewing it, I’ve added a few changes for future print runs: Continue reading 

This entry was posted in Springboard Blog and tagged ProtoSpringprototypingelectronicsAndroid on November 7, 2014 by Gergely Imreh.

  • ProtoSpring, part 2: schematic revision and PCB

In the first part of this series I’ve outlined the idea of making a prototyping extension board for the Springboard, and finished with a rough schematic. Since then I’ve revised the schematic based on experience, and laid out the prototyping board PCB.  By the end of this write-up we’ll have a complete design, ready to send to manufacturing.

Before I dive in, probably the single most important lesson learned is to keep in mind all different stages of a board design. There’s a lot of back and forth between schematic, components, footprint, layout, manufacturing specs. The tools help making the right decisions, and often when something feels difficult it is because I’m doing it wrong…

Finding crucial parts

After making the basic schematic I realized that there’s one type of component on the board that can make or break the entire project: the board-to-board connectors. To interface with the Springboard needed to find 2mm pitch, dual row, through hole, perpendicular mounting female receptacles. I couldn’t find anything like that in the local electronic stores. After an hour of search online they did turn up, fortunately both Digikey and Mouser had the required 3×24×2, and 7×2 connectors by 3M.

We would find many of us are speaking about the new generation software development and computer programming system. Among it, ProtoSpring is one of the prototyping beard board which gets connected with a single board computer and we can see this board in every individual electronic good. It can be broken out to 8XGPIO channels, 12C channel, Led, audio connectors and power buttons.

Finally found the correct 2mm, double row, perpendicular, through-hole connectors I needed

I got a bit lucky too, because these ones can be ordered piecemeal, while other pin count versions (e.g. the 10×2) require minimum order of 300 pieces. This is one of the first example of the importance of choosing components. Of course, if these were 0.1″ (2.54mm) connectors then there wasn’t any problem finding them in the first place, but then they would probably not fit on the Springboard itself… Continue reading 

This entry was posted in Springboard Blog and tagged ProtoSpringPCBschematicKiCaddesignelectronics on October 28, 2014by Gergely Imreh.

  • ProtoSpring, part 1: Idea and Schematic

I was looking for a project to showcase how easy it is to extend the functionality of the Springboard platform, drawing inspiration from the expansion board that is bundled in the kit.

Springboard and expansion board (top), from klinger.net

The expansion board connects to the main board with a couple of pin headers (power, GPIO, sound) and cables (USB) to break out some of the functionality to easy to access connectors, such as the regular speaker and mic plugs, two USB, on-off button. It should be easy to replace that board with another to provide different functionality, so I’ve come up with an example. Continue reading 

 

Running Go on VIA ARM devices

Go is a modern and quite popular systems programming language developed at Google. I’ve recently came across a wiki page describing its ARM support, I thought it would be interesting to check how VIA devices can make use of Go. I’ve checked out the VAB-820, VAB-600, and the APC 8750 boards, all a bit different from each other.

VAB-820 with a Gopher

I found that the general documentation does not cover all the things that can (and generally do) go wrong, though a few online searches usually pointed me in the right direction. Installing Go needs two separate steps: bootstrapping first, then compiling from source.

Bootstrap

Bootstrap is needed because Go’s now written in Go, so you need to already have Go to get Go. That makes sense, right? There are two ways go about this (pun intended). Either use another system (e.g. an x86 computer) that can create a bootstrap package for ARM, or use the Go package from the ARM board’s distro. My VIA boards are running Debian, and there the available Go version is pretty old. So instead I opted to an x86 bootstrap. These next steps are based on information at the Install Go from Source page.

Due to the extended software development, there are a number of programming languages developed which would ease the manual power. Go is a very simple and reliable programming language which is introduced by Google and it helps the software engineers to produce new and efficient software in a very easy manner. If you are zealous to learn more about Go software, then Read Full Article online and it aids you a lot.

First downloaded Go 1.4 from their binary distribution page, and put it into the ~/go1.4/ directory as that’s where Go looks for the binaries by default.

Next cloned the latest Go source from Github, and used it to create a bootstrap package

$ git clone https://github.com/golang/go.git

$ cd go/src/

$ GOOS=linux GOARCH=arm GOARM=7 ./bootstrap.bash

[lots of stuff]

Bootstrap toolchain for linux/arm installed in /home/user/go-linux-arm-bootstrap.

Building tbz.

-rw-r–r– 1 user user 48983241 Nov 18 16:55 /home/user/go-linux-arm-bootstrap.tbz

In the settings above the GOOS environmental variable selects Linux, GOARCH selects ARM support in general, and GOARM selects ARMv7 support. Working with these settings, since both VAB-820 and VAB-600 are ARMv7 devices, Other values are listed in the installation guide.

To make it easy, I’ve made our current precompiled bootstrap files available for download for ARMv7ARMv6, and ARMv5.

Compilation

The rest of the steps take place on the board itself. Boot up, and set up networking. Copy the “go-linux-arm-bootstrap-X.tgz onto the board and extract it, for example into the user directory. Clone the Go source as well, and then things are almost ready.

Almost, because ARM devices are generally underpowered compared to x86, or at least their CPU/memory/stack balance is very different than an x86 machine. Because of this, some of the settings need to be modified to successfully build Go. Based on a blogpost, the stack size needs to be  reduced (e.g. from 8MB to 1MB) with “ulimit -s 1024”, and the Go tests scaling factors need to be modified through an environmental variable.

And one more trick before starting: the compilation makes heavy use of “/tmp” and it is better to make sure it’s in the memory, not trashing the SD Card or eMMC storage. The wiki recommends these settings in “/etc/fstrab”

tmpfs /tmp tmpfs nodev,nosuid,mode=1777 0 0

The final process is something like this:

$ tar xjvf go-linux-arm-bootstrap-armv7-.tbz

$ git clone https://github.com/golang/go.git

$ cd go/src

$ ulimit -s 1024

$ GO_TEST_TIMEOUT_SCALE=10 GOOS=linux GOARCH=arm GOARM=7 GOROOT_BOOTSTRAP=~/go-linux-arm-bootstrap ./all.bash

[now wait for a long time]

ALL TESTS PASSED

 

Installed Go for linux/arm in /home/user/go

Installed commands in /home/user/go/bin

*** You need to add /home/user/go/bin to your PATH.

In the process first Go is compiled, then all the tests are run that are included in the source repository. That’s the part that takes the longest time. If all the tests passed, then the new go binary will be installed in the “bin” directory of the git repository – and now ready to use!

VAB-820

On VAB-820 I’ve managed to successfully install Go through these steps, and using the ARMv7 bootstrap kit. Its quad core performance is pretty good, and can’t wait to try it for some practical projects! (Might need to permanently set the stack size to 1MB like above.)

There’s also a simpler way to possibly get to use Go: turns out that Resin.io, which has (alpha) support for VAB-820, has some Go base Docker images, so deploying an application onto the board can be as easy as a “git push”. This is still very experimental at the moment, so things will likely to change.

VAB-600

The process is quite similar on VAB-600 as well, though it takes longer time, because it’s a single core ARMv7 device. Nevertheless it works, and provides some interesting options for projects! (Might need to permanently set the stack size to 1MB like above.)

APC 8750

The APC 8750 is an ARMv6 device, and should be okay to bootstrap with a ARMv6 kit, but it turns out that it also depends on the OS version run. The board I had at hand was running soft-float Raspbian, and there the compilation failed with some floating point errors. Looks like that in this case, using a ARMv5 (“GOARM=5”) bootstrap kit might do the trick. The compilation takes quite a long time, though, naturally.

Future

As the next step, you can look around at the tutorial section, and at Awesome Go for great project examples and recommended libraries.

Have you tried Go with any VIA boards, or any other ARM devices? Have any interesting Go project that you want to show off? Would love to hear your experience in the comments!