Jan Kiszka wrote:
...and may also add further latencies with the system has to speed up
again. Anyway, there might be use-cases where power consumption is -
besides latency - also an important issue. I'm just thinking of our
smaller mobile robots where the power demand of the drives and the
controller are not that far apart as on the larger platforms.

What about other time sources on x86? Which systems already have HPET
these days, and does this source not suffer from frequency scaling? I
once read that HPET is quite easy to program, is this true? IOW, would
it be worth considering to add this to the HAL?
If it an computer with ACPI (which is very likely), one could use the PM Timer (3.579545 MHz) as the base system clock, and sync with TSC at every clockscaling and power events (the reason for that is that PM Timer reads are quite slow (around 1 microsecond on the hardwares I have tested), so most timer stuff should go via TSC).

The advantage with this is that the system will keep accurate time even in the low power modes (when TSC is turned off). I have done a crude implementation of this on KURT (http://www.ittc.ku.edu/kurt/), and it is a workable solution

There are also good research/development oppurtunities in:

  1. scheduling ACPI wakeup from those low-power modes in such good
     time that all realtime requirements are met :-)
  2. scheduling of clockscaling changes to make minimum impact
     on realtime tasks

(For ACPI, see http://www.acpi.info/DOWNLOADS/ACPIspec30a.pdf)



Anders Blomdell

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