Thought Leadership

Articles about power management and RTOS memory utilization

By Colin Walls

I have had two articles published on recently that address power management in embedded software and how memory is utilized with a real time operating system …

Power management in embedded software

Power consumption by embedded devices is a critical issue. There is always a need to extend battery life and/or reduce the environmental impact of a system. Historically, this was purely a hardware issue, but those days are past. In modern embedded systems software takes an increasing responsibility for power management. This article reviews how power management is achieved while a device is operating and looks at the techniques employed to minimize power consumption when a device is inactive.

RTOS scalability

RTOS memory utilization

Most embedded systems of non-trivial complexity employ an operating system of some kind – commonly an RTOS. Ultimately, the OS is an overhead, which uses time and memory which could otherwise have been used by the application code. As an embedded system has limited resources, this overhead needs to be carefully evaluated, which commonly leads to questions about RTOS memory footprint. This article looks at how memory is used by an RTOS and why the memory footprint question may be hard to answer.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at