Chapter 5. Documentation Roadmap

The eCos and eCosPro documentation is divided into a number of components:

eCosPro Developer's Kits: Installation and Getting Started Guide
This document describes how to install the eCosPro Developer's Kit and get started with eCosPro.
User Guide

This document. It includes the following sections:

Programming With eCos
This section describes how to write programs that run under eCos by running through some examples.
The eCos Configuration Tool
This section describes the eCos graphical configuration tool and how to use it to change how eCos behaves.
eCos Programming Concepts and Techniques
An explanation of the eCos programming cycle, and a description of some debugging facilities that eCos offers.
Configuration and the Package Repository
Information on how to configure eCos manually, including a reference on the ecosconfig command, memory layouts, and information on how to manage a package repository using the eCos Package Administration Tool.
eCosPro Reference Guide

The eCosPro Reference Guide provides detailed documentation on various aspects of eCos and eCosPro and well as descriptions of hardware support, board setup and timings. It also incorporates other guides such as the RedBoot User's Guide and the eCosPro-SecureSockets User's Guide. This document is being constantly updated online at, so the following list just mentions the more important sections, take a look at the guide itself for the full story. A copy of the eCosPro Reference Guide is also provided with each eCosPro Developer's Kit in both HTML and PDF format.

The eCos Kernel
In-depth description of eCos's native C kernel API. Important considerations are given for programming the eCos kernel. The semantics for each kernel function are described, including how they are affected by configuration.
The eCos Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL)
A description of the structure and functionality of the eCos HAL. This section also includes a porting guide to help moving eCos to different platforms.
I/O Packages (Device Drivers)

A description of the philosophy behind eCos device drivers, as well as a presentation of the C language APIs for using the current device drivers.

Device driver support includes serial, ethernet and FLASH devices, and support for PCI, PCMCIA and USB interconnects.

A description of the POSIX and µITRON APIs and how they are supported under eCos.
File System Support Infrastructure

This describes the filesystem infrastructure provided in eCos. This is implemented by the FILEIO package and provides POSIX compliant file and IO operations together with the BSD socket API.

Other components, such as:

TCP/IP Stack Support for eCos

This describes the Common Networking for eCos package, which provides support for a complete TCP/IP networking stack. The design allows for the actual stack to be modular permitting different implementations. Currently only a version based on FreeBSD is are available as the earlier version (circa 2000) based on OpenBSD was deprecated and has now been removed from current eCosPro releases.

Other components related to networking, including support for SNMP, DNS, HTTP and FTP, are also described.

eCosPro-SecureSockets User Guide
This provides a guide to the eCos OpenSSL port, an optional add-on package for users of the eCosPro Developer's Kit.
Architectural and Platform Support
This describes eCosPro support for the different architectures along with support for individual platforms, platform configuration, HAL support (including debug, profiling, diagnostic and SMP support), board setup and startup.
RedBoot User's Guide
This describes RedBoot, which provides a complete bootstrap environment for a range of embedded operating systems, such as embedded Linux and eCos, and includes facilities such as network downloading and debugging. It also provides a simple flash file system for boot images.
Component Writer's Guide

The Component Writer's Guide is intended for developers who need to add or modify parts of eCos itself. It describes the following things:

An explanation of the configuration technology used in eCos, why it is done this way, how it works and the terminology used.
Package Organization
A description of the eCos package repository, how it is organized and how packages themselves are organized.
The CDL Language
A description of the CDL language and how it is used to control the configuration of eCos components. The document also contains a complete specification of the language.
The Build Process
A description of what happens once a configuration has been created and must be built into a set of executables.
eCosPro CDT plugin user's guide
This provides documentation on the eCosPro CDT plugin as well as Eclipse/CDT usage notes for application developers using the eCosPro Developer's Kit.