Starting the LibreBMC project - Thu, May 27, 2021
Today is the first meeting of the LibreBMC project. This project is an initiative of the OpenPOWER Foundation. We are starting this project to build an open source hardware BMC. It will use the POWER ISA as a soft-core running on an FPGA, like the Lattice ECP5 or the Xilinx Artix7. Our goals is to design a board that is OCP DC-SCM compatible and that can easily build on current FPGA’s. While we are starting with these 2 FPGA’s in mind and we’ll be focussing on 1 or 2 soft-cores. But we want it to be modular, so the general design can support different soft-cores, and run at least LSB and OpenBMC. You can read more in the OPF announcement : https://openpowerfoundation.org/openpower-foundation-announces-librebmc-a-power-based-fully-open-source-bmc/
I am very happy to be part of this initiative and will be contributing as much as I can. This initiative is from the OpenPOWER Foundation, however it runs as a public SIG, meaning anybody can help out. If you want to contribute, participate or observe, feel free to follow any updates on : https://discuss.openpower.foundation/c/sig/librebmc/11 We also have a project page available, where we’ll update the git repo links, discussion links and any other information : https://openpower.foundation/groups/librebmc/
A small anecdote, which isn’t mentioned in many articles is how the name came to be, while initial discussions start in the beginning of this year 2021. We, meaning the OpenPOWER Foundation steering committee, were guaging interest and looking for founding members. In our discussions it quickly became very confusing, as we were talking about theBMC, using the term OpenBMC, and then switched to using OpenBMC hardware, or OpenBMC software, which lead to more confusion. I started using the name LibreBMC for the hardware project we wanted to start and OpenBMC for the existing BMC software stack. It quickly was adopted by the rest of the team and made it out into the wild. While we, engineers, often struggle to come up with good names for our projects, this one was easy and inspired by LibreOffice, Libre-SOC, and many other projects that are open/libre and this is what we’re also doing.