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Windows CE to be Open Source

Tim_RobertsTim_Roberts Member - All Emails Posts: 13,627
Despite the date, this is not an April Fool’s joke. Microsoft announced today Windows Embedded Compact will become open source by July 1st:
"Today Microsoft announced that it will move its Windows Embedded Compact real-time OS into their Open-Source plan. Microsoft understands there are still many customers currently using Windows CE or Windows Embedded Compact, especially in the industrial control market, that need a hard real-time OS for their industrial control applications and that the new Windows 10 IoT is not a replacement solution for these customers. Microsoft hopes there will be a strong community keeping the Operating System up-to-date and will provide a small team to streamline the Open-Source project until the end-of-support cycle in 2026."
That’s a very interesting development.

Tim Roberts, [email protected]
Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

Tim Roberts, [email protected]
Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

Comments

  • Peter_Viscarola_(OSR)Peter_Viscarola_(OSR) Administrator Posts: 8,090
    Hmmmm... I heard this IS an April 1 joke.

    And even if it was true I guess I'm missing the significance. I mean... It's an outdated semi-realtime OS. I think we have enough of those already, don't we?

    Peter
    OSR
    @OSRDrivers

    Peter Viscarola
    OSR
    @OSRDrivers

  • Tim_RobertsTim_Roberts Member - All Emails Posts: 13,627
    On Apr 2, 2016, at 7:24 AM, [email protected] wrote:
    >
    > Hmmmm... I heard this IS an April 1 joke.
    >
    > And even if it was true I guess I'm missing the significance. I mean... It's an outdated semi-realtime OS. I think we have enough of those already, don't we?

    Hmm. I actually copied the “not an April Fool’s joke” from another mailing list that ought to know, but I certainly can’t find any independent confirmation.

    If it was a “prank”, it’s not a very good one. Spoof announcements are supposed to be unlikely, and I don’t find this unlikely at all.

    Tim Roberts, [email protected]
    Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

    Tim Roberts, [email protected]
    Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

  • Xiaofan_ChenXiaofan_Chen Member - All Emails Posts: 191
    On Sun, Apr 3, 2016 at 1:26 PM, Tim Roberts <[email protected]> wrote:
    > If it was a “prank”, it’s not a very good one. Spoof announcements
    > are supposed to be unlikely, and I don’t find this unlikely at all.

    It is so real, especially when it states "especially in the industrial control
    market". I actually talked to two of my co-workers who are supporting
    Windows CE based product...


    --
    Xiaofan
  • Pavel_APavel_A Member Posts: 2,739
    So how this is different from what they once called "shared source"?

    Simply dumping the stuff over to github doesn't automatically make it "open source". There should be some development/support procedure in place, a way to communicate (a mailing list), there should be a maintainer, someone to review bug reports and pull requests ... you know.

    -- pa
  • Peter_Viscarola_(OSR)Peter_Viscarola_(OSR) Administrator Posts: 8,090
    Folks...

    I haven't seen a SINGLE Microsoft acknowledgement of this. And I don't see any reason why they WOULD do it. There's no way this is happening.

    Peter
    OSR
    @OSRDrivers

    Peter Viscarola
    OSR
    @OSRDrivers

  • Gregory_G._DyessGregory_G._Dyess Member - All Emails Posts: 372
    Having worked deeply with Windows CE for 16+ years, I concur with Peter's assessment. None of my contacts (some of which are eMVPs) have heard anything either. Although a large part of WCE/WEC is available in the Platform Builder shared source, key components are not.

    Worse, is that M$ doesn't seem to be saying *ANYTHING* about the future of Windows CE/Windows Embedded Compact at all! I heard semi-official mutterings of it folding into the Windows 10 IoT "Unified Architecture" or something similar. That would be the final death of WEC, IMHO, as the Windows Desktop driver model is way too heavy to ever work in an embedded environment, especially a low-power one.

    All of this is totally non-official as I do not work for M$ or have any confidential information (which I couldn't share if I did).

    Greg

    --- [email protected] wrote:

    From: [email protected]
    To: "Windows System Software Devs Interest List" <[email protected]>
    Subject: RE:[ntdev] Windows CE to be Open Source
    Date: Mon, 4 Apr 2016 13:09:06 -0400 (EDT)

    Folks...

    I haven't seen a SINGLE Microsoft acknowledgement of this. And I don't see any reason why they WOULD do it. There's no way this is happening.

    Peter
    OSR
    @OSRDrivers



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  • Gregory_G._DyessGregory_G._Dyess Member - All Emails Posts: 372
    Well Peter, I must respectfully disagree. WEC is one of the leading HARD real-time OS in the market with better RT performance than Linux, even with the RT extensions. (I've developed for both and have no real preference of one over the other.)

    It is still very popular on ARM-based processors. Just the past 5 years alone, I have worked for clients using it in medical device controllers, electronic voting machines, precision agriculture (think self-steering tractors), control systems for semiconductor manufacturing equipment, industrial I/O gateways and retail gasoline pumps. There is a large number of clients who are very upset with M$ over the apathy over WEC.

    Having said that, GUI/non-RT applications are *CONSIDERING* moving to Andriod, especially seeing how horrendous Silverlight/WPF/Whatever is/was on WEC.

    Greg

    --- [email protected] wrote:

    From: [email protected]
    To: "Windows System Software Devs Interest List" <[email protected]>
    Subject: RE:[ntdev] Windows CE to be Open Source
    Date: Sat, 2 Apr 2016 10:24:12 -0400 (EDT)

    Hmmmm... I heard this IS an April 1 joke.

    And even if it was true I guess I'm missing the significance. I mean... It's an outdated semi-realtime OS. I think we have enough of those already, don't we?

    Peter
    OSR
    @OSRDrivers


    ---
    NTDEV is sponsored by OSR

    Visit the list online at: <http://www.osronline.com/showlists.cfm?list=ntdev&gt;

    MONTHLY seminars on crash dump analysis, WDF, Windows internals and software drivers!
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  • Tim_RobertsTim_Roberts Member - All Emails Posts: 13,627
    [email protected] wrote:
    > I haven't seen a SINGLE Microsoft acknowledgement of this. And I don't see any reason why they WOULD do it. There's no way this is happening.

    No, you are correct, I seem to have been suckered. Silly me.

    However, I can think of several reasons why they would do this, which is
    why I forwarded it as potentially plausible. Releasing the source code
    has the enormous benefit to Microsoft of releasing them from ongoing
    support burden. In the CE world (and that world is not small), the
    operating system is much less of a black box than it is in the desktop
    world. The folks releasing CE systems have to know the internals rather
    deeply. Thus, that community is well prepared to take over maintenance
    and resolve problems.

    --
    Tim Roberts, [email protected]
    Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

    Tim Roberts, [email protected]
    Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

  • anton_bassovanton_bassov Member MODERATED Posts: 5,181
    > WEC is one of the leading HARD real-time OS in the market with better RT performance
    > than Linux, even with the RT extensions.


    Well, the very fact that you mention Linux here seems (at least to me) to be a strong indication of
    correctness of the statement about "outdated semi-RTOS". Otherwise it simply would not even get into your head to compare it to Linux in this context. Instead, you would be comparing it to true RTOSes like QNX and Windriver. Basically, this is the same thing as speaking about a truck in context of racing car discussion.


    The only possible way of using Linux for RT purposes is to run it as a lowest-priority task in RTOS
    that has a fulll control of interrupts and CPU scheduling. All RT logic has to be controlled by this RTOS. Anything that is Linux-related, be it ISRs, software interrupts or non-RT scheduler, should not have a chance to run unless RT scheduler allows it. Furthermore, it should not have a chance to disable interrupts on the CPU, and all memory that is used for RT purposes should ideally be hidden from the physical memory map that it receives upon the boot. Basically, it has to be paravirtualised to run under RT hypervisor with whom Linux kernel should communicate over shared memory that, from Linux's perspective, is a sort of memory-mapped IO range, rather than a system RAM.....


    Anton Bassov
  • ramkumaranramkumaran Member Posts: 1

    The openwince project. The openwince project collects free (open source) software tools, modules, applications, drivers, and so on for Windows CE platform developers. ... Some of the modules/subprojects are usable outside Windows CE development environment and are platform independent.

    ce marking

  • Peter_Viscarola_(OSR)Peter_Viscarola_(OSR) Administrator Posts: 8,090

    Please don’t post to long dead threads.

    P

    Peter Viscarola
    OSR
    @OSRDrivers

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