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Author Topic: Linux in space  (Read 601 times)

parkdale

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tickmike

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Re: Linux in space
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2020, 02:14:25 PM »

Interesting.
Lots of laptops and equipment is Linux powered on the ISS.  :)
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: Linux in space
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2020, 09:20:59 PM »

Linux may be cheaper than alternatives, and easier to find trained developers, but is it really the best solution for spacecraft?   Iíd have thought an ultra stable, purpose-written, real time OS might be more apt, such as VxWorks...

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/VxWorks

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VxWorks is designed for use in embedded systems requiring real-time, deterministic performance and, in many cases, safety and security certification, for industries, such as aerospace and defense, medical devices, industrial equipment, robotics, energy, transportation, network infrastructure, automotive, and consumer electronics

Letís not donít dwell upon the Martian Pathfinder priority inversion bug (google for that) but I thought something like VxWorks would still be a better choice than Linux for mission-critical, cost-no-object developments, especially when about to be deployed in outer space?   :-\

Same Wiki article goes on to suggest that VxWorks will be used in NASAís Mars 2020 rover.
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Alex Atkin UK

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Re: Linux in space
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2020, 01:11:26 AM »

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The ship's touchscreen interface is rendered using Chromium and JavaScript

Holy crap, how much RAM do they have on there?  :lol:
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parkdale

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Re: Linux in space
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2020, 10:00:22 AM »

And the ancient x86 processors..... :o still there supposed to be radiation :fingers: proof
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: Linux in space
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2020, 11:13:27 AM »

Iím interested in zdnetís articleís description of the triple processor redundancy.

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It's only when every processor comes up with the same answer that a command is sent to the PowerPC microcontrollers.

Hmm, in the quite likely scenario where one processor becomes permanently defective while the other two continue to work, would not such a strategy always lead to a complete freeze of the command stream, sending the craft hurtling off in entirely the wrong direction?

Iíd have thought more likely, as long as two of the processors completely agreed, their command would be accepted while the third would be assumed to be in error, and ignored.

Confession though, of all the various technologies in which I have dabbled, rocket science is not one of them. :D
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