GUI Libraries, Frame Buffer and Input Devices

Sebastian Huber sebastian.huber at
Tue Dec 14 10:54:36 UTC 2010


we currently evaluate what GUI libraries might be suitable in combination with
RTEMS.  One graphics package is highlighted in

this is based on Microwindows/Nano-X.  As a high level GUI toolkit this path
suggests FLTK.  For devices with very limited resources this approach seems to
be a good choice.  It is easy to write custom screen, mouse and keyboard
drivers for the Microwindows/Nano-X framework.

An alternative is Qt Embedded.  This is very attractive since it runs on many
platforms and is one of the best GUI libraries available.  It provides also a
capable GUI designer.  It can use the Linux frame buffer
(Documentation/fb/framebuffer.txt) for graphics output.  For mouse, keyboard,
touch, etc. access it uses the Linux input devices
(Documentation/input/input.txt).  These device APIs are defined in

#include <linux/fb.h>
#include <linux/kd.h>
#include <linux/input.h>
#include <linux/vt.h>

RTEMS has currently no standard APIs for mouse and keyboard devices.  RTEMS
provides a frame buffer API in

#include <rtems/framebuffer.h>

The question is now, why do we provide a RTEMS specific API here?  Why don't we
simply use the Linux APIs?  Linux is the dominant open source platform and thus
supporting its APIs enables RTEMS to a wide range of applications.

Have a nice day!

Sebastian Huber, embedded brains GmbH

Address : Obere Lagerstr. 30, D-82178 Puchheim, Germany
Phone   : +49 89 18 90 80 79-6
Fax     : +49 89 18 90 80 79-9
E-Mail  : sebastian.huber at
PGP     : Public key available on request.

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