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About CaseyW

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    I've come back for more.

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    Austin, TX

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    LabVIEW 2009
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  1. Hi All, I can comment on how RTX fits in to this discussion. There are a few different companies that provide solutions called "real-time subsystems" that can also be used to run real-time and general-purpose applications on the same computer hardware. The caveats are that I/O can be limited with these solutions (often different drivers are needed due to the change in HAL), and there is more room for any application problems to have a serious impact on the entire system (RT code runs in kernel mode). From a thousand-foot view, real-time subsystems basically modify interrupt service routines to run some real-time code alongside a general-purpose OS (e.g. Windows). National Instruments released a product based on RTX (one of these real-time subsystems) previously, but I/O support was limited to a few types of boards as mentioned above. This is one of the reason that LabVIEW Real-Time for RTX (the NI product name) is no longer actively sold. Virtualization is another technology for doing the same thing (running an RTOS in parallel with a general-purpose OS), but it provides a few advantages. With the right configuration, virtualization software can enable OSs to natively access I/O, which means that special drivers don't need to be developed. In addition,there is typically isolation between real-time and general-purpose applications. The bottom line is that virtualization is a very good technology for building multi-OS systems. The NI Real-Time Hypervisor is based on this technology. Please let me know if I can help answer any additional questions, and have a great day all! Best Regards, Casey Weltzin Product Manager, LabVIEW Real-Time National Instruments casey.weltzin@ni.com
  2. Hi All, I can help with some of these questions, as I manage the Real-Time Hypervisor product for NI. In theory, you could potentially use a variety of bare-metal hypervisors (hypervisors that don't depend on a host OS) to run LabVIEW Real-Time and another OS in parallel. However, this may take substantial integration work on your part. You could also try to use hosted virtualization software such as VMWare Workstation on top of Windows to run LabVIEW Real-Time, although it would not perform deterministically in this case and you may run into compatibility issues with the emulated Ethernet devices, etc. I/O will also be limited to USB/Serial/Ethernet in most cases. When creating the Real-Time Hypervisor, NI used a low-level hypervisor similar to the one that was mentioned in a previous post (called VirtualLogix VLX). Work was done on top of this low-level component to: - Make dynamically partitioning I/O devices and RAM easy through a graphical utility called the Real-Time Hypervisor Manager - Support soft-rebooting LabVIEW Real-Time without rebooting Windows XP (I/O devices also must intelligently reset in this case) - Expose virtual Ethernet and Virtual Console (COM) connections between OSs - Host the hard drive under Windows XP, and allow LabVIEW Real-Time to access files through the hypervisor on an independent partition - More... Therefore, the short story is that although using a bare-metal hypervisor to set up a system that boots LabVIEW Real-Time and other OSs in parallel is very much possible, you can probably expect some integration work (not an out-of-box experience). The Real-Time Hypervisor aims to help users avoid this work, as systems are shipped preconfigured and graphical utilities ease any adjustments that customers would like to make. You are correct, however, that the Real-Time Hypervisor does not yet support 3rd party PCs. Because virtualization is closely tied to system hardware, we have thus far prioritized development on NI hardware platforms that we closely control (known interrupt line configurations, components, etc). However, we are looking at what it would take to support generic PCs in the future. Please let me know if you have any questions, and have a great week everyone! Best Regards, Casey Weltzin Product Manager, LabVIEW Real-Time National Instruments
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