OpenCores




OpenCores is on a mission to "revolutionize" the electronic hardware industry and to make the semiconductor giants tremble, by making a donation to design/manufacture an ASIC-component based on the world's only "true" open-source 32-bit RISC processor supporting Linux (the OpenRISC processor from OpenCores.org).


OpenRISC 1200 processor platform using OpenCores IPs


  • Cost efficient solution:
    No license costs is maybe the first benefit that comes to mind, but there are many more cost-related benefits that are connected with this platform. Some of these cost-benefits is coming from the advantages described below.
  • No “end of life” problems:
    Open-source code in combination with that the source code is developed with a synchronous methodology, enables the option to easily convert/port the functionality to other FPGA/ASIC and make it allot easier for companies to guarantee that they can continue to support older products.
  • Technology independent:
    Many suppliers provide free IP-cores which sometimes look very appealing, however these IP-cores are only allowed to be used in a specific vendor technology. This makes it impossible to switch to another technology and it also provides slim chances to reduce the component price during the annual price negotiation, since the supplier knows that it requires a lot of work to switch to a competitors and use their IP-cores instead.
  • Reusable and flexible platform:
    Open-source enables companies to unlimited access to reuse the code and modify or add functionality to it.
  • Faster time to market:
    Open-source gives full access into all hardware functionality, decreasing both the actual development cycle and also verification/debugging cycle. A function (IP cores) that is well used in the open-source community is often more well verified then a commercial IP core, which also help companies staying away from long-debugging lead-times from a commercial IP-core supplier.
  • Full access to source-code:
    Enable the engineers to fully understand all functions within a design, which then often leads to that the engineers come up with new solutions on how to improve functionality, or making an existing function more efficient based on the products actual requirement.
  • Extremely powerful debugging/verification solutions:
    Open-source Verilog code enable the engineers to use a powerful tool called Verilator. Verilator is the fastest free Verilog HDL simulator, and beats many commercial simulators. It compiles synthesizable Verilog, plus some PSL, SystemVerilog and Synthesis assertions into C++ or SystemC code. It is designed for large projects where fast simulation performance is of primary concern, and is especially well suited to generate executable models of CPUs for embedded software design teams. Verilator together with other open-source debugging tools allow endless debugging/verification possibilities, which is extremely important to achieve fast “time-to-market