How to Decide On a Real-time Operating System for a Software Project

April 1st, 2017 by

Are you wondering whether to use a real-time operating system or a traditional operating system in your project? If so, you’re not alone. Many people face the same challenge when it comes to choosing the right operating system. The decision is very important because it affects the response and performance of your application. There are several things that you should consider to determine whether an RTOS is appropriate for your project.

  • Threading or multitasking

Real-time operating systems are designed to support different application scenarios and do not need modification to support new applications. For complex applications, particularly those with progressively enhanced code-bases, pre-emptive multitasking is very important. It makes response times for every event independent of the others. That’s why RTOS allows for the addition of new functions without disruption of the existing hard real-time functions. Therefore, if multitasking or threading is required in a project, an RTOS is the best option.

  • Code complexity

If the code base organization or architecture is sufficiently small to keep details in the head, an RTOS can be used.  It is important to consider factors like the need for memory management, techniques for product development, fault tolerance and application coding to determine whether a real-time operating system is ideal for your project.

  • Testing

Do you need to test your operating system? How long do you have to test the operating system? It’s only by testing that you will determine whether the system will deliver the expected response in your project.

  • Project scope

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What devices do you intend to use in your project and what is your target output? Do you intend to integrate more devices into the system in the future to enhance mass production? Make sure that the devices that you use in your project are compatible with an RTOS before you adopt a real-time operating system.

There are many reasons to consider a real-time operating system for a project. However, it’s important to think about the RTOS and its suitability to your project to avoid problems in the future. Consider the four factors above to decide whether an RTOS is ideal for your project.

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