Timesys vs rtai

Jan Kiszka jan.kiszka at web.de
Fri Oct 29 19:48:26 CEST 2004

Steven Seeger wrote:
> Anyone on the list ever used TimeSys linux? My company bought it and wants
> to move away from RTAI (at some point) so we can have professional support,
> but I am not so sure that their approach will provide performance as good as
> RTAI's. Any thoughts?

Aside from any performance issues: If your company is going to sell 
products including the TimeSys real-time variant (their GPL version is 
not hard real-time), double check their contracts what they say about 
their non-GPL code inside the GPL kernel (likely only implicitly if at 
all). This is still an open issue, not just for TimeSys.

Furthermore, this critical part of their product is, AFAIK, closed 
source even for customers. So, you cannot verify what is going on and if 
the kernel is really hard real-time (TimeSys adds a big "patch" to the 
kernel). And you will totally depend on TimeSys (and only them!) for any 
support. Almost no open source developer will help you with such a 
proprietary kernel!

Such business models (again: there are also others practising it) break 
with the open source concept and try to map the classic closed model on 
Linux, using only a minor subset of its benefits. On the other hand, 
this is unnecessarily raising legal questions.

Note, this has nothing to do with RTAI in particular, it is a question 
of open source or not!

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