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Networks for real-time embedded systems are a key emerging technology for current and future systems. Such networks need to enable reliable communication without requiring significant resources, and provide an easy programming interface. This paper considers a file-system interface across all resources in a networked embedded system, ie. an application can access local, remote and mobile resources using a file interface. The approach is based on Styx (Dorward et al., 1997), part of the network protocol of the Inferno/Plan 9 OS. The Styx protocol provides file system level abstractions for ease of developing and management at an application layer. To this, we have added limited fault-tolerance and potential mobility for resources. To ensure applicability in a low-resource context, we have defined and implemented a (hardware) Styx IP-core Module1, removing the need for a CPU and software overhead.
Date of Conference: 20-22 Sept. 2006