Data Acquisition (DAQ) and Control from Microstar Laboratories

New "Accel64 for Linux" Software Supports 64-Bit Linux

Works with DAP Systems

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Real time acquisition with generic systems: Accel64 for Linux v1.00 supports 32-bit and 64-bit platforms.

Bellevue, WA, March 24, 2016 -- Microstar Laboratories, Inc., maker of Data Acquisition Processor (DAP) systems for PC-based high-performance multichannel measurement applications, has released version 1.00 of the Accel64 for Linux software. This package builds Loadable Kernel Module (LKM) software for the GNU/Linux system, for running on 32-bit or 64-bit hardware architectures, to support the control of DAP data acquisition boards on systems using kernel versions in the 4.xx series. Accel64 for Linux is offered under the BSD license for free download.

The Accel64 for Linux software determines what kind of hardware platform is present and selects the native interface mode as the default. However, advanced users who have implemented kernel support for 32-bit software architectures under a 64-bit hardware platform can use either the 64-bit or 32-bit interface, depending on application requirements.

32-Bit or 64-Bit Platforms?

Major Linux distributions are considering whether to drop direct support for 32-bit hardware platforms, since 64-bit devices are becoming omnipresent. GNU/Linux distributions generally presume that if you have 64-bit hardware and a 64-bit operating system, the applications will use compatible 64-bit development tools and drivers, so support for 32-bit applications is incomplete. This can present problems for vetted 32-bit applications, particularly those dependent on kernel extensions. The 32-bit applications can run fine on 64-bit hardware, but not if the 32-bit operating system or 32-bit application support is unavailable. Applications can be rebuilt for native execution on a 64-bit system, but that requires new certification testing, since 64-bit compiler tools are allowed (within language standards) to make subtle changes that can affect critical application behaviors.

Whichever environment you choose, the Accel64 for Linux software will not add any new hazards: it will work the same in a 32-bit operating system environment, in a 64-bit operating system environment, or in a 64-bit operating system environment with transitional support for 32-bit applications. Not only that, but the Accel64 for Linux software should be compatible with most – if not all – major distributions based on Linux 4.xx kernel versions, 32-bit and 64-bit.

DAP Board Operation Under Linux

Linux practitioners are well aware of the benefits of running parallel processes configured by compact scripts. Data acquisition applications become difficult real-time problems if the attention of the host system is slaved to the demands of data acquisition devices – processing many channels, at ultra-high rates, on a demanding time schedule. Delegating that time-critical work to the DAPL 2000 software system, running on-board in the DAP subsystems, eliminates most real-time concerns from the host application environment. An ordinary graphical desktop environment and generic kernel configuration perform almost as well as a specialized real-time kernel.

DAP boards provide an x86-family embedded processor to support operation of the embedded DAPL 2000 system and data acquisition hardware devices. The DAPL 2000 system is part of the DAPtools software, which Microstar Laboratories provides for operating the DAP boards at no added charge. The DAPL 2000 system provides the configuration scripting and the multitasking real-time control of data acquisition hardware devices. A host system must provide PCI or PCI-X (extended) I/O bus slots to host the DAP boards.


Accel64 for Linux, version 1.0, is available now for download from the Microstar Laboratories Web site.


Accel64 for Linux software, version 1.00, is now available for GNU/Linux systems, so that advanced Data Acquisition Processor applications can be supported as 32-bit applications on 32-bit or 64-bit hardware platforms, or as 64-bit applications on 64-bit hardware platforms. Delegation of complex real-time details to the DAP/DAPL systems means that data acquisition applications can use generic kernels and graphical desktop environments, even on lightweight platforms without 64-bit support. This new software is available for free download.


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Note to the Editor:

Microstar Laboratories suggests this text as a caption for the available image:

Real time acquisition with generic systems: Accel64 for Linux v1.00 supports 32-bit and 64-bit platforms.

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Microstar Laboratories, Inc. claims Microstar Laboratories, Data Acquisition Processor, DAP, DAPtools, Accel64, DAPL, and DAPL 2000 as trademarks. Linux is the registered trademark of Linus Torvalds in the U.S. and other countries. Other organizations may claim – or may have registered as trademarks – other trade names, logos, and service marks that appear in this document but not in the list above.

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