January/February 2016 - page 41

February 2016
& M
and scalable and are offered in various ver-
sions from a wide range of embedded com-
puting vendors. ADLINK, for example, offers
two form-fit-function compatible designs for
increased scalability and flexibility: the COM
Express Type 6-based COM Express Basic
(125 x 95mm) and COM Express Compact
(95 x 95mm) modules. Both are compati-
ble with all current carrier boards as well as
backwards-compatible with earlier designs.
This helps OEMs secure their investments in
existing designs requiring a performance and/
or connectivity upgrade. With its board-inte-
grated SEMA (Smart Embedded Management
Agent) board functionality and the SEMA
Cloud connectivity for IoT-based monitor-
ing, managing and maintenance services,
ADLINK also helps engineers lift their new
Intel Core processor-based designs easily into
the cloud to create a better end-user experi-
ence, reduce costs, build revenue, enable new
applications in various industries such as
medical, gaming or industrial automation.
Take the medical arena. Here, embedded
designs are important elements of medical
devices and instruments and in all circum-
stances, reliable operation has to be guaran-
teed. With SEMA Cloud, space-restricted
fanless medical designs with a tight thermal
envelope benefit, for example, from alerts
about inappropriate power consumption and
corresponding heat dissipation before a sys-
tem fails. This enables countermeasures – like
scheduling maintenance or reducing CPU
power usage to allow continued operation –
to be taken in advance, thus preventing poten-
tial system failures.
Ticketing systems and other self service termi-
nals focus on sophisticated embedded secu-
rity features including intrusion prevention.
With SEMA Cloud, all relevant information
such as memory condition, networking status,
board ID and intrusion detection status can
now even be monitored remotely via clouds.
This helps operators - even with tight bud-
gets - to add additional monitoring features to
improve operation.
In Industrial 4.0 applications, any unsched-
uled downtime can result in massive pro-
duction losses. Remote monitoring of the
application via SEMA Cloud can help to pre-
vent downtimes by additional real time mon-
itoring of the environmental conditions via
the on-board SEMA BMC and also periph-
erals like S.M.A.R.T data of storage media as
well as system temperature and power alerts,
enabling continuous 24/7 system operation.
By pushing system condition as well as oper-
ational and environmental data to the user
cloud server via any kind of TCP/IP con-
nection — such as 3G/4G, LAN or wireless
LAN — system operators have easy access to
data and analytics through web browsers or a
web application programming interface (Web
API), using devices such as a desktop PC, tab-
let or smartphone, or using data analytics
systems. SEMA Cloud manages not only the
device data but also allows users, for example,
to throttle CPUs, access I2C bus connected
sensors, upload and download files for soft-
ware updates or downloading device data for
analysis. A special feature is the possibility to
securely perform remote firmware updates. By
means of so-called campaigns, such actions
can be performed remotely parallel on many
devices, significantly reducing field mainte-
nance costs. Operators can verify, monitor
and manage system performance at any time
from a single, central location, improving reli-
ability and reducing management costs.
To enable communication between SEMA
Cloud and the devices, all the new ADLINK
Computer-on-Modules feature the intelli-
gent SEMA Agent. It consists of the dedicated
hardware-based board management control-
ler for local data management and encrypted
communication with the cloud as well as cor-
responding middleware. The SEMA manage-
ment controller not only provides all relevant
status information; it even allows remote man-
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