The Death of Windows CE Gives Rise to IoT Real-Time

Although there has been no direct comment regarding the future of Windows Compact (CE), it’s clear that CE is giving way to Windows 10 IoT Core. The interesting thing with CE is that it had two distinct use cases: products that had a real-time processing need and those that did not, or at least no need for tightly bounded determinism.

Given the two use cases, Windows 10 IoT Core can certainly meet the non-real-time needs with flying colors. But the other is a real problem for Microsoft. How can they keep these other users in the boat? This is where things come full circle. Many years ago, a small company, then named VenturCom, helped spawn the Windows Embedded movement with two products, the original Windows NT Embedded product and their own RTX (real-time extension) for Windows NT. Next came Windows XP embedded and Windows CE, both of which VenturCom supported with their real-time extension. Once Windows CE evolved to include a real-time kernel, VenturCom continued to focus RTX on the big Windows products.

Fast forward to today. Microsoft has a great product for small, single purposed devices in Windows 10 IoT Core. This product will quickly supplant Windows Compact, but there is still a need to do some real-time, deterministic processing on these devices. Here is where we close the circle. VenturCom has evolved into IntervalZero, after a couple of rebrands and acquisitions. Now, IntervalZero’s RTX product has evolved to RTX64, supporting 64-bit Windows 10. That means RTX64 can function on Windows 10 IoT core running on Intel architecture supporting 64-bit.

With the combination of Intel’s low-powered, small form factor ATOM processors, Microsoft’s consolidation of the Windows 10 OS for IoT devices, and IntervalZero’s RTX64 product, there is a straightforward solution to the CE legacy. Not only that, we now have the ability to develop single real-time solutions that can work across the full range of small devices up to enterprise level systems without any binary modifications. Now that is powerful.

In the case of Windows Compact, the death of a product is actually giving rise to a whole new world where the possibilities are truly amazing. What will you develop?

Daron 在嵌入式技术和实时系统领域拥有二十多年的经验和专业知识——从机器控制到人机界面开发。 他曾负责领导Ardence的嵌入式产品和服务团队,在 IntervalZero 于 2008 年成立之前,Ardence 是 Citrix 旗下的一家公司。在 VenturCom/Ardence 工作期间,Daron 曾协助开发和改进该公司领先市场的 RTX 实时软件。 他提供技术知识和指导,帮助塑造了该产品的最初版本。