Electronic Design

Software-Analysis Tools Improve Embedded Reliability

Reliability tops the list of requirements for embedded applications. Without it, products can come to a grinding halt, act in abnormal ways, or even cause serious damage. Good design is the key to reliable systems. Meanwhile, tools like CodeTEST 3.0 from Applied Microsystems Corp. ensure reliability by finding problems in software. CodeTEST also is used to tune applications.

CodeTEST supports software and hardware probes. It consists of the CodeTEST Manager, Trace Analyzer, Performance Profiler, Memory Analyzer, and Coverage Analyzer. Software probes are added by instrumenting applications when they are compiled. Hardware probes provide low intrusion and high-accuracy time-stamped data collection with the added cost of the hardware probe.

The CodeTEST Manager is a Java-based application that controls and configures data collection. It also tracks and manipulates results from multiple application test sessions. The Python scripting language has been added to facilitate automated test and development processes.

Next, the new Trace Analyzer presents trace data recorded during program execution. This information includes application and operating-system actions. The trace display is synchronized with call stack and source code displays. Searching and filtering operations are supported. Trace information can be exported in a variety of formats, including HTML and XML.

The Performance Profiler records timing information. With it, developers can determine how often portions of code are used. Optimization of often-used code usually improves overall application performance. The Memory Analyzer helps eliminate memory-related errors such as leaks. And, the Coverage Analyzer tracks code use during execution. It determines which parts of an application are executed during tests.

CodeTEST supports Sun Microsystem's ChorusOS, ENEA OSE Systems' OSE, QNX's Neutrino, and Wind River's VxWorks AE. Available immediately, CodeTEST 3.0 starts at $4000.

Applied Microsystems Corp., 5020 148th Ave. NE, Redmond, WA 98052; (800) 426-3925; fax (425) 883-9702; www.amc.com.

TAGS: Components
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