eCosPro NTP v3 support and high precision clock infrastructure


CAMBRIDGE, UK -- June 21, 2012 -- eCosCentric Limited, the eCos and RedBoot experts, today announced the addition of NTP (Network Time Protocol) support for eCosPro. The implementation provides an NTP client, compatible with NTP Version 3 servers, as well as a high precision advanced clock management package to provide unified time services to all eCos libraries and user applications. The NTP support allows systems based on eCosPro to be synchronised with one or more industry standard time servers, on private networks or via the public internet. Additionally, high precision 64-bit time-stamping can be applied to time sensitive data. Already being applied in transportation systems based on eCosPro, these services will benefit applications in scientific, engineering and communication fields.

As embedded systems based on eCosPro may be deployed in the field for many years, the implementation has been designed and fully tested to safely handle the cases of UNIX (32-bit) clock overflow in the years 2038 and 2106, and account for NTP rollover in 2036 and 2172. The NTP client also includes provision for leap seconds.

"A vital related aspect to eCosCentric's NTP client development and testing has been to ensure that eCosPro was completely safe at the UNIX and NTP rollover dates. The lifetime of many embedded systems being designed today will easily exceed 24 years - even if that wasn't necessarily an expectation when they were originally conceived. Systems being developed in sectors ranging from avionics through medical, telecommunications, instrumentation, industrial, smart homes and others will become increasingly at risk of still being in service and adversely affected at these rollover points." said Paul Beskeen, Director of Engineering at eCosCentric.

eCosCentric's engineers have been able to significantly reduce code duplication within eCosPro through the unified clock management package, eliminating similarly implemented clock conversion functions. The C library time functions and POSIX layer clock and timer functions now make direct use of these new services.

The NTP support and clock management services have been qualified across all architectures supported by eCosCentric, and are available as enhanced eCos features provided by eCosCentric in an eCosPro Developer's Kit. The NTP client requires 20 kilobytes of codespace and typically needs 17-23 kilobytes of RAM to operate on a CISC based target.

About eCosPro

eCosPro is a stable, fully tested and supported version of the eCos open source real-time operating system and RedBoot bootstrap firmware. The eCosPro Developer's Kit is a distribution of eCosPro with commercial support & advice, prebuilt eCos host tools, compiler tool chains, full documentation, Eclipse-based integrated development environment to streamline eCos application development, C++ runtime (including Standard Template Library) as well as profiling, code coverage and memory allocation debugging tools. Middleware components qualified with eCosPro include a Java virtual machine, an in-memory database, graphical user interfaces, security libraries, CANopen and USB compliant host, device & OTG stacks and flash file-systems.

For further details visit or contact eCosCentric.

About eCosCentric

Founded in April 2002, eCosCentric is the leading provider of eCos and RedBoot support, training, development and consulting services worldwide. Staffed by the original eCos creators and highly experienced embedded system and software engineers, eCosCentric provides complete solutions consisting of run-time systems, complementary host tools and certified third party applications.

eCos, eCosCentric and eCosPro are registered trademarks of eCosCentric Limited. UNIX is a registered trademark of The Open Group. All other company or product names mentioned herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.