November 30, 2001

New uClinux distribution is now more integrated

Author: JT Smith

SnapGear Inc, a leading supplier of consumer VPN
Router appliances and OEM custom design solutions has released a new general
uClinux distribution based upon the Linux 2.4.10 kernel.

The new source distribution includes multi-kernel build options, broad
processor family support, libraries, network tools, user applications, and
pre-canned configurations for numerous boards. Combined with the companion
tool-chain download of compiler tools the "all in one" approach to the
distribution represents a break-through in providing experienced Linux
developers with everything required to quickly build complex royalty-free
embedded uClinux solutions. The less Linux-literate developer would still
benefit from the user-friendly SDKs available from packaged tools suppliers.

In addition to supporting the Motorola ColdFire family the distribution
provides support for Motorola 68K and ARM cores. It is also possible to
compile for SPARC and Intel i960 targets. Two kernel builds are possible,
either Linux 2.4.10 or Linux 2.0.39 with uClibc and the older uC-libc
libraries. Over 20 pre-canned configurations for board support are available
to bring up many standard development boards from companies such as
Motorola, Atmel, NetSilicon, Lineo, and even SnapGear's SecureEdge family of
reference designs. Developers will find it easy to add new board support and
in the spirit of the GPL (GNU Public License) SnapGear is encouraging the
contribution of these 3rd party configurations to be rolled into future
distributions. Send via e-mail to

Shells and command line utilities (using BusyBox) are present along with
application support such as a web server and Microwindows GUI. Virtual
Private Networking (VPN) is present with an integrated IPSec implementation
(FreeS/WAN 1.9) and PPTP (PoPToP). PoPToP was originally written and placed
under the GPL agreement by members of SnapGear's development team.


The distribution is available from st-20011112.tar.gz (68Mb). A compiler tools package is available from

About uClinux

uClinux, or "Micro-Controller Linux", is the popular variant of mainstream
Linux specifically for MMU-less processors for deeply embedded systems.
Many commercial applications of uClinux have become possible due to the
small footprint (as little as half a megabyte of RAM for a complete
multi-tasking kernel and networking stack.) It is now possible to build
Linux appliances as small as an inch by an inch with 1Mb each of Flash and
RAM yielding Internet-ready products. Recent application of uClinux has been
seen in Internet cameras and home automation systems. For more information
on uClinux please visit

About SnapGear, Inc.
Originally known as Moreton Bay Ventures, SnapGear Inc is a company renowned
for uClinux expertise, shaping the direction of uClinux, and advanced Linux
platform products. Moreton Bay was acquired by Lineo Inc in May 2000 to
become Lineo's Integrated Products Division. A subsequent spin-off a year
later saw the team reborn as SnapGear Inc which provides the popular
SnapGear VPN Routers along with SecureEdge custom design solutions. SnapGear
Inc has produced turnkey development, design, and even manufacturing and
fulfillment services for large blue-chip companies. SnapGear solutions are
characterised by affordability, tight integration, and design ingenuity.
Recent examples include a sport/racing control terminal, an advanced gateway
router, and a network access point connecting petrol bowsers to the
Internet. For more information on SnapGear please visit For more information on SecureEdge reference
designs and services please visit


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