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The ROI of Hardware Configuration Management in IC Design Flows

Authored on: Jun 9, 2010 by Srinath Anantharaman

Technical Paper

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Software teams have long realized the ROI of software configuration management (SCM) systems, which they have used for decades to manage development, improve collaboration, and coordinate releases. SCM systems have become an integral part of a software development environment. Now hardware design teams are encountering the same market forces as software designers: increased competition due to globalization, larger teams of engineers spread across multiple sites, an exponential increase in design complexity, and shrinking market windows. This paper outlines what a multi-site development team sharing large volumes of constantly changing data needs for hardware configuration management (HCM).

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nav.gaj Posted Jul 20, 2010

Hi Srinath, This is Naveen, working as Principal Engineer at Emulex. Just wondering, Is this a version control system you are talking about ? If not, can you desribe how it can compliment our existing version control system such as cvs. thanks -nG

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Frank Eory Posted Jul 20, 2010

Srinath's paper describes his company's version control/data management system. Other companies offer similar products with similar features. We too used to use CVS and also RCS for version control at my company. After all, these are free tools! They were acceptable when projects were of modest complexity and the design team was small and located in the same facility. But today our design teams are multi-national and for a project like a large SoC, the team can be very large when you count digital hardware design, analog hardware design, software design, hardware verification and place & route. For today's projects, we really need a web-based configuration management tool that every team member can access. Another important feature is to minimize disk requirements by only make copies of files that are going to be modified, so every engineer does not require his own copy of every project file. The read-only files are referenced by links. The tool my company uses offers all those features, and from reading Srinath's article, it appears that his company's tool also has these features.

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