editor's blog
Subscribe Now

World’s Smallest Server?

Given all of the effort that goes into building internet capabilities into embedded systems, I was intrigued by a claim to the “world’s smallest device server” from Lantronix, a single-chip solution. After all, why is everyone going through all this effort if there’s already a single chip that does it all?

Well, as might be expected, it’s not everything to everyone – it’s what they call a serial-to-Ethernet converter, although just saying it goes to Ethernet is not really giving it enough credit, since it has full TCP/IP capability built in.

The chip they use is also, as it turns out, not new. They’ve had it for a while, using it on their XPort product, which has a built-in RJ-45 connector.  But for some applications, the size of XPort and the requirement that it be placed on the edge of the board (for access to the connector) was a problem, so they’ve removed the “integrated” connector as well as adding some capabilities in the new xPico product.

The chip they use is one they did themselves, and, a few passives aside, it has a processor, RAM (256K of SRAM), and ROM (512K of Flash) embedded on that single chip. It’s a complete device server, with a full IP stack, SNMP, DHCP, yadda yadda. They also include encryption. As if inventing their own versions of all of this weren’t enough, they also did their own OS (CoBos, which they pronounce like “co-boss”), and their own web server. Even the processor itself is proprietary.

It is possible for users to add their own code, with up to 60K of space available in the Flash. Code is developed using – you guessed it, their own tools, the CoBos Programming Kit (CPK).

As to the target user, they see this as adding value for systems that need to connect to the internet based on a serial connection in their system. Rather than having to take on a huge project and learn a network stack that is really “just” another I/O, they can slap this on and be done with it.

You can find more details on xPico in their release.

Leave a Reply

featured blogs
Jul 1, 2022
We all look for 100% perfection and want to turn our dreams (expectations) into reality as far as we can. Are you also looking for a magic wand to turn expectation into reality? The story applies to... ...
Jun 30, 2022
Learn how AI-powered cameras and neural network image processing enable everything from smartphone portraits to machine vision and automotive safety features. The post How AI Helps Cameras See More Clearly appeared first on From Silicon To Software....
Jun 28, 2022
Watching this video caused me to wander off into the weeds looking at a weird and wonderful collection of wheeled implementations....

featured video

Synopsys 112G Ethernet IP Interoperating with Optical Components & Equalizing E-O-E Link

Sponsored by Synopsys

This OFC 2022 demo features the Synopsys 112G Ethernet IP directly equalizing electrical-optical-electrical (E-O-E) channel and supporting retimer-free CEI-112G linear drive for low-power applications.

Learn More

featured paper

Addressing high-voltage design challenges with reliable and affordable isolation tech

Sponsored by Texas Instruments

Check out TI’s new white paper for an overview of galvanic isolation techniques, as well as how to improve isolated designs in electric vehicles, grid infrastructure, factory automation and motor drives.

Click to read more

featured chalk talk

Single Pair Ethernet : Simplifying IIoT & Automation

Sponsored by Mouser Electronics and Analog Devices and HARTING and Würth Elektronik

Industry 4.0 with its variety of sensing solutions and fieldbus systems can make communication pretty tricky but single pair ethernet can change all of that. In this episode of Chalk, Amelia Dalton chats with representatives from three different companies: Analog Devices, HARTING and Würth Elektronik to discuss the benefits of single pair Ethernet, what the new IEEE standard means to SPE designs, and what you should consider when working on your next single pair Ethernet design.

Click here for more information about Single Pair Ethernet solutions from Analog Devices, HARTING and Würth Elektronik