Community Blog DevOps Approach with Network-on-Chip and System-on-Chip

DevOps Approach with Network-on-Chip and System-on-Chip

This article explains how Network-on-Chip (NoC) and System-on-Chip (SoC) hardware work with DevOps.

By Raghav K.

DevOps assigns responsibilities to each both development and operations team. The basic goal is to provide complete visibility and transparency across the entire pipeline, including every phase (coding, testing, security, and delivery.)

IT operations include a lot more than “ops.” The operations side includes multiple management functions, such as:

The Network-on-Chip (NoC) and System-on-Chip (SoC) concepts are particularly interesting. Hardware is the basis for software to run, and hardware variety is a prominent influencer in software development. An application or software must be compatible with the hardware platform to leverage its true potential.

Network-on-Chip / System-on-Chip

The NoC – SoC hardware is a platform that enables communications between network modules and the system modules that exist on a chip. This sounds like a concept with a promise of greater productivity and portability. However, software development around NoC and SoC platforms while utilizing the DevOps approach may bring out an extremely efficient solution in the future.

DevOps with NoC and SoC

A solution with a great concept requires careful planning with a strategy that has a fine-grained architecture and an approach that forms strong collaborative measures. There is a four-step process towards success for NoC and SoC with DevOps:

  1. Collaboration – Implementing collaborative measures between teams as a culture is the only effective method to form collaboration.
  2. Infrastructure as Code (IaC)IaC is the driving link to implement software assessment operations, hardware-based simulations, Electronic Design Automation, and programmable environment configurations.
  3. Continuous Integration and Testing – This is highly useful to create an extensively automated DevOps pipeline based on the cloud-native technology that resolves the DevOps pipeline complexities.
  4. Security Integration – The integration of security practices within the DevOps pipeline is essential if you want to use the pipeline with NoC and SoC.

Design Partnerships and Collaboration

Design partnerships need an effective collaboration policy that focuses on equal engagement between the partners. Team members belonging to the respective teams should be well-versed with whatever they are bringing to the table. Their areas of expertise and innovative mindset are essential. The teams can be from the developer side, operations side, security side, or hardware implementation side.

Cross-technical fulfillment can be a big plus in such scenario. Every functional module (hardware or software) must be in sync with the overall system functions to provide an effective solution. All the teams need to work harmoniously to provide strong designs and strategies for robust solution builds.

Team Focus and Dependencies

Any team will design or strategize a system to meet the requirements of their respective field of expertise. For example, developers will design a system primarily to meet software development concerns, whereas operations professionals will design a system that focuses on IT operational requirements like deployment and O&M.

Team focus and solution dependencies must be designed using professionals from every team. All team members must be equally engaged within the project, especially while designing a concept-based practice like Network-on-Chip and System-on-Chip and linking it to a DevOps pipeline.

The enterprise must focus on simulation techniques with SoC – NoC systems. Hardware simulation can enable the developers to write better code and work with added automation levels to make the system more efficient and effective.

Steps for Simulation and Planning

The first step is to establish an effective workflow to build and test the hardware configurations with a hardware interface that is linked to the software. If you are enabling Data Encryption within the first overlay associated with NoC – SoC deployment, you need to work with a cloud HSM that can encrypt and decrypt your data at rest and in motion. Enabling continuous software testing is an essential practice to follow. The hardware and DevOps need testing for continuous integration and delivery to work seamlessly.

Security is still a concern in this scenario. You must consult a security team and information security professionals while simulating an entire NoC and SoC build. The planning phase is all about implementing different design and delivery patterns to produce an effective solution for a pipeline.

When it comes to the hardware within a solution, you must consider different networking scenarios on NoC chips and different solution scenarios on SoC chips. Stress testing, response time, and other types of testing are essential for a robust design solution. These testing phases work similarly with hardware platforms as it does with DevOps to enable automated CI/CD techniques.

Challenges and Solutions

Developing Network-on-Chip and System-on-Chip with DevOps comes with multiple challenges. DevOps is a culture change. When dealing with the hardware, the organizational culture needs a major revamp to enable better communication and collaboration between teams.

The first challenge is to hire a team with cross-functional expertise. The people can work on their primary development functions and then provide input into operations, security, and hardware mapping. This can provide an optimized and automatic system or accelerated deployment.

The setup of synchronized links between cloud services, the environment of your choice (hybrid cloud, single cloud, or multi-cloud), and all automations must be optimized. The production deployment platform, hardware simulation software, and cloud need to work harmoniously to enable a system that works correctly.

In the End – What Matters?

Network operations and DevOps can work together if we can build a solution that can work in a wide range of scenarios.

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