DreamPlug puts a 1.2GHz ARM PC in a power outlet
If you want a small PC the most common options are to buy a netbook, or if you want a larger screen a nettop. But there is an even smaller option that does not require any desk space at all: it's called a plug computer.
These tiny machines form part of an over-sized plug and sit in a power outlet. Unlike a typical PC they don't have a video card and therefore no video out. They are ideally suited for use as a web or media server that is always on and always connected. Just plug it in and forget about it.
While there are a few plug computers out there, including the SheevaPlug and GuruPlug, the latest model to become available offers an update to the performance, software, and connections available. It's called DreamPlug, and it offers up some serious computing power using an ARM processor.
Here's the basic spec:
- Marvell Sheeva core @ 1.2GHz speed
- Linux 2.6.3x Kernel
- 512MB 16bit DDR2-800 MHz
- 1 GB on board micros-SD for kernal and root file system
- 2 x Gigabit Ethernet 10/100/1000 Mbps
- 2 x USB 2.0 ports (Host)
- 1 x eSATA 2.0 port -3Gbps SATAII
- 1 x SD socket for user expansion/application
- WiFi 802.11 b/g
- Bluetooth BT2.1 + EDR
- Audio Interfaces
- Headphone (analogue) out x 1
- Fiber Optics (SP/DIF) out x 1
- Jtag and Uart connections for external module
- 5V3A DC power supply
Marvell introduce the SheevaPlug development platform
If you talk about small-footprint computing with most people today they'll likely mention netbooks, but Marvell have taken the size of their latest PC to a point where it doesn't even sit on your desk anymore.
It is called the SheevaPlug and the clue is in the name. This little computer is so small it sits in the power socket much like a large phone charger plug. Inside you get a 1.2GHz ARM processor, 512MB RAM, 512MB of Flash storage, Gigabit Ethernet and a USB 2.0 port. For an OS you get a choice of Linux distributions and power consumption is listed as one-tenth that of a typical PC allowing it to be an always-on solution.
Dr Simon Milner of Marvell commented:
There is no doubt that home networks need to become more intelligent and easier to use by offering value added services for the consumer … We have created an open computing platform for developers in a consumer and eco-friendly form factor. Marvell's goal is to accelerate the development and availability of innovative software and services in the home.
Marvell is working with a number of third parties to turn this into a range of off-the-shelf products. One example is work being done with Axentra who are integrating their home server solution called HipServ into SheevaPlug. We've also already seen how PogoPlug are taking advantage the platform when they showed off their hardware at CES.
Right now you can pick up a development kit for just $99 which is backed up by a range of software and documentation on the Marvell website. The products produced using the platform will also cost around $99 with Marvell stating the price will fall to $49 eventually.
GuruPlug Server - The Power to Connect
Compact End-Product Form Factor
Open Source Platform
High performance with low power
GHz Classs Processor
Sheeva CPU Core
512MB 16bit DDR2 @ 800MHz data rate
NAND FLASH Controller, 8-bit bus
512MB NAND FLASH: 4Gb x8, direct boot
128-bit eFuse Memory
High speed I/O & Peripherals
Hardware Security Engines
SHA1 and MD5 authentication algorithms
Bluetooth: 2.1 / EDR
7x GPIOs for user application- 5 with 3.3V I/O, 2 with 1.8V I/O
Optional with SPI Flash + SD card boot up
UBIFS Flash file system support
NAND Flash boot up
|GuruPlug Display - DevKit || |
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- Plug Computers
- DreamPlug puts a 1.2GHz ARM PC in a power outlet – New Tech Gadgets & Electronic Devices | Geek.com
- Marvell introduce the SheevaPlug development platform – New Tech Gadgets & Electronic Devices | Geek.com
- Axentra® :: Products : HipServ® Home Server 2.0
- GuruPlug JTAG
- Axentra® :: Store
- GuruPlug Server
- Marvell: Kirkwood Series