ARM64 Open Laptop Concept

Vero Apparatus is designing a software developer oriented 64-bit ARM based laptop computer. The open source hardware and software will address the concerns that many people have about proprietary products, and provide the most transparent assurances about absence of security vulnerabilities.

Background

The ARM64 Open Laptop concept was announced in an ad hoc session at DebConf 2014 in Portland, Oregon, where over a dozen interested developers gathered at fairly short notice. They approved the concept and decided on some of the things to do next. See the slides of the presentation.

Hardware

The idea is to produce a small quantity (say 100) of replacement motherboards physically compatible with a laptop model that is already popular with developers. Lenovo or HP might have suitable chassis models. The Lenovo X220 is a good candidate but Vero Apparatus is open to alternative proposals. The design will re-use an existing case, SATA drive, display, battery, keyboard, touchpad, webcam, speaker and microphone to reduce development cost.

The main processor will probably be an AMD Opteron A1100 system-on-chip code named "Seattle". In short, this has four or eight 64-bit Cortex-A57 cores, supports up to 128GB RAM, SATA and LAN. Being a server chip it lacks video, audio and USB, so either those must be added to the motherboard or another, more versatile chip must come along soon. Hardware choices will opt for longer battery life rather than 3D graphics performance.

Software

Debian GNU/Linux is the default OS and distribution choice but Open Source implies freedom for the user. UEFI is the preferred firmware architecture, realistically in the form of Tianocore EDK2.

VeroApparatus: ARM64OpenLaptopConcept (last edited 2014-12-23 09:37:09 by AndySimpkins)