QNX Neutrino Hosts

This chapter includes the following:

Note: If you've already installed an evaluation version of QNX SDP 6.5.0, and you've purchased and received a commercial QNX license, please go to Commercializing your evaluation software,” below.

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Processor 2 GHz or more Intel Pentium 4 2 GHz or more Intel Pentium 4
RAM 512 MB 1 GB
Disk space 2.2 GB 2.7 GB
Monitor 1024×768 1280×1024

Caution: Some x86 systems can run in System Management Mode (SMM), where the BIOS installs special code that runs when a System Management Interrupt (SMI) occurs. SMI interrupts may be generated by the motherboard or peripheral hardware, and can't be masked by the operating system. When SMM is entered, normal operations — including the OS — are suspended, and the SMI handler runs at a high priority. Avoid using systems where SMM can't be disabled, because it can destroy QNX Neutrino's realtime performance. The OS can't do anything about the delays that SMM introduces, nor can the OS even detect that the system has entered SMM.

You can also install the QNX Neutrino RTOS as a virtual machine on VMware Workstation 6.5 or 7.0, VMWare Player 3.0, and Microsoft VirtualPC 2007. If you find problems with any virtualization environment, please post your findings in one of the forums in our Foundry27 community website.

BIOS settings

We recommend you use the following BIOS settings:

Installing QNX SDP

  • For QNX Neutrino self-hosted development, it's possible to have more than one version of QNX SDP installed on your computer at the same time, by having them in separate partitions. If you want to retain an earlier released version of QNX SDP or QNX Momentics, install 6.5.0 in a new partition.

    When you boot, you're asked to choose the partition by its number. If you're then prompted to choose from multiple .diskroot files, choose the one that corresponds to the partition that you already chose.

  • You can install QNX SDP into a new partition without harming the contents of other partitions.
  • In text mode, we support only the US keyboard layout.
  • If you install QNX Neutrino in a partition on a Windows machine and later use Windows software to create another partition, you'll lose your QNX Neutrino partition.

To install QNX SDP 6.5.0, do the following:

  1. Insert the QNX Software Development Platform 6.5.0 Installation DVD or the QNX Software Development Platform 6.5.0 Installation and Boot CD (x86 Targets) into the appropriate drive.
  2. Boot from the disk and follow the instructions on your screen. Depending on your system, the installer may ask you to do the following:

    The installer will also ask if you wish to install a package of GNU Public License programs, such as tar and sed. We recommend that you do so for development machines.

  3. When prompted, remove the disk from the drive and then reboot.

    Note: If your EIDE doesn't support DMA:
    • If you're using the Power-Safe filesystem (fs-qnx6.so), boot using qnxbase.ifs.
    • If you're using the QNX 4 filesystem (fs-qnx4.so), boot with .altboot by pressing Esc when prompted.

    If you have more than one partition on your disk, choose the one you installed QNX Neutrino in. Choose the appropriate boot loader. If you don't choose a partition or boot loader, the system uses the default ones.

  4. The first time you boot, a dialog asks you to choose the video driver, resolution, color depth, and refresh rate that are appropriate for your system. You can also select Global Options so you can choose whether to boot into text or graphical (Photon) mode.

    Note: When you start a QNX Neutrino system for the first time, it chooses a “safe” graphics driver (devg-svga.so or devg-vesabios.so, depending on the installed chipset). However, these generic VESA BIOS and SVGA drivers can negatively impact the timing of a system and affect realtime operations. We recommended you use an accelerated driver instead, if at all possible.

  5. Log in as root (or click Superuser in graphical mode). This account initially has no password; for instructions for setting the password and creating other accounts, see the Managing User Accounts chapter of the QNX Neutrino User's Guide. You'll find this manual in the online documentation, as well as on our website.
  6. Set the time zone, time, date, and so on in the Localization windows.
  7. Activate your software (see Activating QNX SDP,” below.

For more information about booting, see the Controlling How Neutrino Starts chapter of the QNX Neutrino User's Guide.

Activating QNX SDP

The QNX Momentics Tool Suite and certain related products require activation. If you don't activate the product within the specified timeframe, the product will cease to function until you activate it. No personal data is transferred during the activation process.

Activating automatically

If your development host is connected to the Internet, you can activate QNX SDP automatically.

Activating manually

if your machine isn't connected to the Internet, you must activate your software manually from a machine that is, by doing the following:

  1. In the QNX SDP Activation dialog, click Activate Manually.

    The Manual Activation dialog appears with an activate-prompt key. This dialog has a button that you can use to save the activate-prompt key in a file, /etc/qnx/license/activate_prompt_key.txt. This can eliminate the need to retype the key, which can be error-prone.

  2. Transfer the activate-prompt key to the machine that's connected to the Internet.
  3. Go to our website, www.qnx.com, log into your myQNX account, and choose Manual Product Activatation.
  4. Enter the activate-prompt key into the form that appears, and then click Generate Response Key. This will return an activate-response key.
  5. Copy the activate-response key and paste it in a file.
  6. Transfer the file into /etc/qnx/license/activate_response_key.txt on your QNX SDP development host.
  7. If you closed the QNX SDP Activation dialog, open it again by selecting Configure-->Activate License from the Launch menu, or by entering the following at a terminal prompt:
    /etc/qnx/bin/qnxactivate -a
  8. Choose Activate Manually, and use the Load Response from File button to load the activate-response key, and then click Activate.

If you choose not to activate at the time of installation, you can activate later by selecting Configure-->Activate License from the Launch menu, or by entering the following at a terminal prompt:

/etc/qnx/bin/qnxactivate -a

Commercializing your evaluation software

If you installed an evaluation copy of QNX SDP 6.5.0, and you've now received a commercial QNX license, do the following to add your commercial license:

  1. Choose Configure-->Add License from the Launch menu.
  2. Enter the license key.
  3. Read the displayed End User License Agreement (EULA) and accept its terms if you wish to continue.

Updating disk drivers

The Neutrino boot process can dynamically add block I/O (i.e. disk) drivers, letting you boot on systems with newer controllers. The mechanism is simple and not proprietary to QNX Software Systems, so third parties can offer enhanced block drivers without any intervention on our part. For more information, see Updating disk drivers in the Controlling How Neutrino Starts chapter of the Neutrino User's Guide.

Uninstalling QNX SDP

Note: You should uninstall QNX products in the reverse order in which you installed them. To determine this order, use a command like this:

ls -lt `find base_directory -name "*uninstall*.sh"`

where base_directory is where you installed the QNX Software Development Platform.

If you want to uninstall QNX SDP completely, simply erase or delete the partition you installed it in.

Determining your base directory

To determine the base directory for QNX SDP, open a command shell and use the qconfig command. For example:

$ qconfig
QNX Installations

  Installation Name: QNX Software Development Platform 6.5.0
            Version: 6.5.0
     Base Directory: /usr/qnx650/
           QNX_HOST: /usr/qnx650/host/qnx6/x86/
         QNX_TARGET: /usr/qnx650/target/qnx6/

The base directory in this example is /usr/qnx650/, but it could be different on your machine, depending on where you installed QNX SDP.