We discuss topics related to embedded systems and IoT devices, especially security and RTOS design.
Isolated Partitioning of Firmware Improves IoT Device Security
There are two methods for improving IoT device security: secure partitioning and secure coding. The latter seems to have gained favor, not only for cloud software, but also for IoT…Keep reading
Heap for C++ Partitions
The Problem As embedded systems become more eclectic, they are likely to include third-party C++ code. This is especially true since the third-party code may not have been written for…Keep reading
Keep It Simple Stupid has been the motto of many engineers, dating back to Kelly Johnson, who coined the KISS acronym at the Lockheed Skunk Works in the 1960s. It…Keep reading
Using MpuPacker to Minimize Waste
The Cortex-M v7 MPU requires regions to be a power of two in size and aligned to their size. This can waste a lot of memory if they aren’t ordered…Keep reading
Visio for Engineers
I had a terrible time when I first started using Visio. I found it to be non-intuitive and frustrating to use. In retrospect this was probably due to my being…Keep reading
I recently read Viewpoint: IoT and the cybersecurity industry’s hardware blind spot by Shahram Mossayebi. It is well-written and informative. Although the Hardware Root of Trust (HRoT) based upon immutable device…Keep reading
The Engineering Funnel
Salesmen and Marketeers are fond of the Sales Funnel. Basically, it represents a sales process wherein a prospect starts at the top of the funnel with many options to chose…Keep reading
Using Heaps in Embedded Systems
I recently read an interesting heap article (Ref. 1) posted on embedded.com. While I largely agree with its author, Colin Walls, I thought it would be interesting to elaborate on…Keep reading
MPU Debugging with smxAware
smxAware was enhanced with new features to help debug issues related to the Memory Protection Unit in SecureSMX systems. These are covered here. The IAR debugger displays the MPU registers…Keep reading
Blocking USB Threats
Factory threats are escalating at a staggering rate. Honeywell has written a helpful report (Ref. 1) on how USB devices are being used to circumvent the air gap that protects…Keep reading
Improving IoT Device Security
I just read a very good article, Supply Chain Security Guidance, by the staff at Finite State, Inc. This article brings home the massive impact upon embedded devices that President…Keep reading
Why Use an RTOS?
An RTOS makes development easier for many projects, and it makes them more expandable, maintainable, portable, and secure. Time and cost savings result.Keep reading
In any real project using a secure RTOS with a Memory Protection Unit (MPU), you are likely to run out of MPU slots for at least some tasks. One group…Keep reading
To Partition Or Not To Partition
For Secure IoT Devices Most embedded systems that are connected to the Internet, also known as things or devices, are based upon microcontrollers having moderate performance and small to moderate…Keep reading
Get Along Little Dogies
Is it time to herd your CWEs (Common Weakness Enumerations) into a safe coral where they won’t trample your code? In a recent report, 918 CWEs have been identified and…Keep reading
Moving Uptown to Umode
pmode partitions may be just as effective as umode partitions for reliability; however, umode partitions are much better for security for the following reasons: The hardware enforced pmode barrier prevents…Keep reading
FreeRTOS Security? Not To Worry
It is now possible to greatly increase the security of FreeRTOS projects by porting them to SecureSMX®, using FRPort™. SecureSMX facilitates partitioning an application into isolated partitions. This provides strong…Keep reading
What’s In Your SOUP?
SOUP (Software of Unknown Pedigree) is often incorporated into embedded system projects due to schedule pressure, lack of in-house expertise, or for other reasons, and it ends up in the…Keep reading
Where’s The Gold?
Many Things are embedded systems to which networking has recently been added. As such, hackers coming in via the Hacker’s Highway (aka the Internet) can overcome the weak defenses of…Keep reading
Is Your Thing In Danger?
Introduction The figure below shows the security structure of typical microcontroller embedded software. There is no structure! A hacker who has gained access to the system, has access to anything…Keep reading
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