[Soekris] Cost effective embedded solutions
jim at netgate.com
Sun Jul 20 00:52:25 UTC 2003
Christopher R. Hertel writes:
> If you go out and buy the development platform that was used as a basis
> for these cheaper systems you'll find that it is much more expensive --
> probably a lot more than the Soekris products.
> The way this works is that you buy the development platform (which has all
> sorts of connectors and such so that you can get 'into' the board). for
> $1000 or more. You write all of your software, test it, debug the board,
> etc. Then you go back to the manufacturer and say "I want 10,000 in the
> first run". If you're D-Link or Dell or Linksys you can do that. The
> price per unit at 10,000 or more is much less. (I just picked up a Dell
> 1184 wireless router for $72.)
> The thing is:
> - You don't get the input/output options on the cheap board that you do on
> the development board. If, for example, you mess up reflashing the
> cheap board you wind up with a doorstop.
Naw, just put the JTAG port back on it.
> - You can't modify the cheap board very much. They're typically reduced
> to a bare minimum of parts, all soldered on the mainboard for minimum
its why they're cheap.
> - No doco on the internals.
I don't know of anyone who releases schematics to the world.
> - You can't just load a standard OS distribution on the puppy and hope it
And? You can't do this with PCs, either. (Show me a 'standard OS'
that will run on any PC I can find.)
> There are, by the way, a group of folks working on reverse engineering
> both the Linksys WRT54G and the Dell 1184 (b/g and b-only AP routers,
Some of us know enough about the WRT54G to understand that the reverse
engineers have a long way to go.
Soekris has an interesting market. There are a lot more companies
(even of one individual hobbist) who want a slightly more expensive but more
flexible platform than there are who will undertake even semi-custom
"Speed, it seems to me, provides the one genuinely modern pleasure."
-- Aldous Huxley (1894 - 1963)
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