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The present article is a position paper reviewing the main requirements and existing achievements of co-design approaches for real-time control and computing. This problem arises with the increasing complexity of modern computers which require more integrated methodologies, specifically suited to critical embedded systems. The general problem to be solved is the achievement of multi-objective goals (i.e. mixing stability, performance and dependability requirements) under constraints of limited execution resources (combining hardware and software components in CPUs and networks). It is expected that co-design approaches, handling the constraints arising from the control and real-time computing domains at early design time, can improve the overall effectiveness of distributed real-time controllers.