Multicore RISC-V SoC for Linux released

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The all new RISC-V chipmaker SiFive has surprised the open-source community again by unveiling a full development board built around the ISA. Called the HiFive Unleashed, this new development board is built around SiFive’s Freedom U540, which is based on the company’s U54-MC Coreplex.

The time gap between the Freedom U540, the world’s first Linux-compatible processor based on the open-source RISC-V chip architecture and HiFive Unleashed is less than a year. The chip is a 64-bit, 4+1 multicore processor that fully supports Linux, as well as other operating systems such as FreeBSD and Unix.

The HiFive Unleashed features, a SiFive Freedom U540 SoC; 8GB DDR4 with ECC; a gigabit ethernet port; 32MB quad SPI flash from ISSI; a MicroSD card for removable storage; and an FMC Connector for future expansion with add-in cards.

Talking to media, Jack Kang, VP of Product and Business Development at SiFive shared that before, people could point to [RISC-V] and say, ‘It’s just a project; it’s only for low-performance stuff; it’s just for microcontrollers … .’ The big promise of RISC-V as a free and open ISA is we have a chance to have an ISA that can be a standard that is used in all levels of computing.

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The availability of HiFive Unleashed development board will prove the real-world use of open-source hardware.      Read more…

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