Tensilica® and MontaVista Software Partner to Create First Embedded Linux Operating System for a Configurable Processor

Companies establish technical and marketing alliance

SANTA CLARA and SUNNYVALE, Calif., September 4, 2001 - In a joint announcement, MontaVista Software Inc., the company powering the embedded revolution and Tensilica, the leading supplier of configurable processor cores for embedded systems, today disclosed a wide-reaching technical and marketing agreement. The pact leads to the porting of MontaVista Software’s Hard Hat™ Linux®, one of the most widely used embedded Linux products to Tensilica’s Xtensa® processor architecture.

The combination of Hard Hat Linux with the Xtensa architecture will enable development of a broad range of communications and consumer products previously built with proprietary controllers or rigid processors, to exploit the incredible flexibility of Tensilica’s configurable processor core. For the first time SOC developers will be able to harness the enormous array of Linux application software on an application-optimized processor. Utilizing Tensilica’s OSKit™ technology, Hard Hat Linux will be automatically updated to fully support all possible configurations that meet or exceed the minimum requirements. This will enable Hard Hat Linux to run "out of the box" on the customized configurations.

This is a good move for both companies," said Jerry Krasner, Ph.D., executive director of CMP’s Electronics Markets Forecasters. "It’s a big win for MontaVista Software in that it will augment and accelerate the diffusion of Hard Hat Linux in the embedded space. And for Tensilica, adding a Linux port to the other supported RTOS’s will make Xtensa an even more attractive option to embedded systems designers."

"We are committed to providing best-of-breed software foundations to our customers," said Tensilica’s president and CEO, Chris Rowen. "MontaVista's Hard Hat Linux is the perfect marriage of the true industrial-strength Linux operating system with optimized embedded support. Few other embedded processor architectures, fixed or configurable, can match our new advanced memory management capabilities for robust software environments like Linux. We welcome MontaVista to our partners Xtensions™ Network and anticipate close collaboration with it in proliferation of Linux across the full spectrum of communications and consumer applications."

"As the company powering the embedded revolution, we target the most advanced products such as Tensilica's configurable architecture," said Jim Ready, CEO and president, MontaVista Software. "Together, Xtensa technology and Hard Hat Linux bring a scalable, robust and flexible platform to embedded developers, allowing them to reduce their time to market and total costs."

The Xtensa processor is targeted at high volume applications including datacom and telecom protocol processing, digital cameras, set-top boxes, office automation products, wireless communications devices, and a spectrum of other consumer electronic products. Announced licensees of the Xtensa processor include Broadcom, Cisco Systems, Conexant Systems, Fujitsu Limited, Galileo Technology, Hughes Network Systems, Mindspeed Technologies, National Semiconductor, NEC Corporation, TranSwitch and Zilog.


MontaVista Software Hard Hat™ Linux support for Tensilica’s Xtensa® processor architecture will be available in second quarter 2002. It will be included as part of the Hard Hat Linux Professional Edition, which is available by product subscription.

About Hard Hat Linux 2.0 Professional Edition

Hard Hat Linux 2.0 Professional Edition boasts unrivaled development support for the broadest range of embedded processor architectures, with more than 480 fully tested and supported host-target combinations. The feature-rich product enables development and deployment for a wide variety of embedded applications, providing a standard platform for designs in communications infrastructure, networking, consumer electronics, instrumentation and control.

About Tensilica

Tensilica was founded in July 1997 to address the fast-growing market for configurable and extensible microprocessor cores and associated software development tools for high volume, embedded systems. Using the company's proprietary Xtensa Processor Generator, system-on- chip (SOC) designers can develop a processor subsystem hardware design and a complete software development tool environment tailored to their specific requirements in hours.

Tensilica's solutions provide a proven, easy-to-use methodology that enables designers to achieve optimum application performance in minimum design time. The company has over 140 engineers engaged in research, development, and customer support from its offices in Santa Clara, California; Burlington, Massachusetts; Princeton, NJ; Houston, Texas; Oxford, U.K.; Stockholm, Sweden; Taipei, Taiwan R.O.C.; and Yokohama, Japan. Tensilica is headquartered in Santa Clara, California (95054) at 3255-6 Scott Boulevard, and can be reached at (408) 986-8000 or via www.tensilica.com.

About MontaVista

MontaVista Software Inc. is a leading provider of open-source systems software solutions for embedded developers. Founded in 1999 by real-time operating system pioneer James Ready, MontaVista's principal offerings are the cross development tools and operating system tailored for embedded developers. MontaVista products include Hard HatTM Linux®, a Linux-based embedded source and binary distribution, development platform and tool kits for x86/IA-32, PowerPC, StrongARM, MIPS, SH, ARM, and other microprocessor architectures. MontaVista offers developers a family of products and services for embedded design targeted for applications ranging from communications infrastructure to thin-client and edge applications. MontaVista Software also makes available valuable technology add-on packages that address specific customer requirements such as the Java development environment, High Availability technology, GUI toolkit and more.

Headquartered in the heart of Silicon Valley, in Sunnyvale, Calif., MontaVista Software is a privately held company funded by leading investors such Alloy Ventures, US Venture Partners, RRE Ventures, WR Hambrecht + Co., and Intel Capital. For more information about MontaVista, please visit http://www.mvista.com, email to info@mvista.com or call (408) 328-9200.

Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds. Hard Hat is a trademark of MontaVista Software Inc. "Tensilica" and "Xtensa" are registered trademarks, and "OSKit" is a trademark belonging to Tensilica Inc. All other names mentioned are trademarks, registered trademarks or service marks of their respective companies.


Kim Alfaro
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Joany Draeger
Tanis Communications
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Partners Program:
Larry Pryzwara
408 327 7383
MntaVista Software    
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PR Strategy and Business Development
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