Western Digital Extends Openness of PlatformIO and Enhances Its RISC-V Portfolio to Accelerate Data-Centric Innovation

Company Supports RISC-V Development with Key Updates to SweRV Core™,
OmniXtend™ Advancement and Free Resources for Software Design

SAN JOSE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Western Digital Corp. (NASDAQ: WDC) today announced a new a strategic
partnership with PlatformIO Labs, OÜ, in collaboration with SiFive,
Inc., to extend the openness of PlatformIO vendor-agnostic embedded
development platform to include new tools, thereby providing an
end-to-end, open environment for innovation, including development for
RISC-V. Fueled by positive feedback from the developer community,
Western Digital also unveiled key new enhancements to its open-sourced
and cache-coherent fabric, OmniXtend™.
Together, these announcements further the company’s support of the
RISC-V initiative and extend its leadership in the development of new
open, purpose-built compute architectures to address the explosive
increase in data driven by high-growth applications such as artificial
intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), Internet of Things (IoT), and

“By teaming up with PlatformIO, we are bringing the entirety of its
multi-architecture embedded design environment, including debug and
trace, to the open-source community. With deep libraries and automated
support already built-in, this will allow programmers to easily
transition among development platforms, including RISC-V,” said Martin
Fink, chief technology officer, Western Digital. “The expanded openness
of PlatformIO, along with our recent enhancements to our SweRV Core and
OmniXtend cache-coherent fabric, further lowers the barrier for RISC-V
development and expands the potential for innovation that will enable us
to realize the benefits of bringing compute power closer to data.”

PlatformIO enables the streamlined design of a wide range of embedded
hardware and software technology, supporting numerous leading operating
systems (OS) and development platforms, as well as hundreds of boards.
Its unified project configuration capabilities leverage built-in package
and library managers automatically install the required library and
toolchains depending on a project build environment.

With support from strategic investments from Western Digital and SiFive,
software programmers developing for RISC-V and other architectures can
use now use PlatformIO’s previously paid PlatformIO Plus™ features at no
cost, including the PIO
Plus Unified Debugger
and PIO
Uniting Testing Engine tools
, as well as remote
access capabilities
. Engineers can also replicate their project in
multiple OS environments, thereby providing greater design flexibility,
and eliminating the need to learn complex vendor-specific toolkits. With
the openness of these unique, multi-architecture testing and debugging
resources, PlatformIO is now a fully open-source supportive environment
for end-to-end design of embedded technology, including those by the
RISC-V ecosystem.

Western Digital is also accelerating RISC-V hardware design with an
updated SweRV Core. Integrated into SweRV Core 1.1 are a wide range of
improvements that notably enhance its performance and reliability. These
include faster divide and fetch functions, the incorporation of I/O
timing control, better error correction capabilities, multi-core debug
improvements and more. The 32-bit, in-order core was designed for
internal usage and open-sourced to the RISC-V ecosystem by Western
Digital earlier this year. The updated core will be available for
download today. For more details or to download the core, visit https://github.com/chipsalliance/Cores-SweRV.

In addition, Western Digital’s OmniXtend memory-centric system
architecture can now operate with Barefoot Network’s end-user
P4-programmable Tofino™ Ethernet switch ASIC. OmniXtend, a new, open
approach to providing cache coherent memory-over-an-Ethernet fabric,
enables access to and data sharing with a wide variety of components.
The compatibility with the Tofino switch ASIC is significant as it
allows data center architects to implement innovative architectures
where the main memory is central to the network. OmniXtend enables cache
coherency to be equally shared with GPUs, FPGAs,
machine-learning accelerators and CPUs. This can support further
advancements in data center architectures, CPU micro-architecture and
purpose-built compute acceleration in data-centric devices.

These announcements build-on Western Digital’s long-standing commitment
to advancing the RISC-V ecosystem and driving data-centric innovation
through open source collaboration, including multiple related strategic
investments and partnerships, and demonstrated progress toward its stated
goal of transitioning one billion of the company’s processor cores to
the RISC-V architecture
. RISC-V enables the company to participate
in and leverage a broad community of inventors focused on bringing
increasing amounts of processing power closer to data. With compute
power closer to data, customers can minimize data movement at the edge
and within their data centers, optimizing processing that is based on
location, workload or a time-value need.


  • “By teaming up with Western Digital and SiFive, we are able to further
    our vision to not only further expand the openness of the PlatformIO’s
    professional embedded development environment, but extend the
    PlatformIO ecosystem,” said Ivan Kravets, chief executive officer,
    PlatformIO. “The ‘zero-configuration’ Platform Plus tools eliminate
    many of the most time-intensive aspects of software design and are
    enabling, better, less buggy code. By making these open-source,
    PlatformIO is now a fully free and open environment for
    next-generation design, from semiconductors to processor to software.”
  • “We are pleased to partner with Western Digital and PlatformIO to
    bring the PlatformIO’s tools to the open-source community,” said
    Yunsup Lee, chief technology officer, SiFive. “The list of supported
    hardware and software solutions and automated capabilities offer the
    potential to reduce the time-to-market of innovative purpose-built
    software applications for IoT, AI, machine learning, analytics and
    more. As SiFive continues to drive innovation and provide leadership
    in the RISC-V space, an investment like this is key to enabling the
    marketplace for those who want to enjoy the benefits of the innovative
    solutions provided by RISC-V.”


About Western Digital

, a leader in data infrastructure, creates environments for
data to thrive. The company is driving the innovation needed to help
customers capture, preserve, access and transform an ever-increasing
diversity of data. Everywhere data lives, from advanced data centers to
mobile sensors to personal devices, our industry-leading solutions
deliver the possibilities of data. Western Digital® data-centric
solutions are marketed under the G-Technology™, SanDisk®, WD®, and the
Western Digital™ brands.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks
and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, statements regarding
RISC-V and our investments in and contributions to the RISC-V ecosystem,
our market positioning, business strategies and growth opportunities,
market trends, and data growth and its drivers. Forward-looking
statements should not be read as a guarantee of future performance or
results, and will not necessarily be accurate indications of the times
at, or by, which such performance or results will be achieved, if at
all. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties
that could cause actual performance or results to differ materially from
those expressed in or suggested by the forward-looking statements.

Key risks and uncertainties include volatility in global economic
conditions; business conditions and growth in the storage ecosystem;
impact of competitive products and pricing; actions by competitors;
unexpected advances in competing technologies; our development and
introduction of products based on new technologies and expansion into
new data storage markets; difficulties or delays in manufacturing; and
other risks and uncertainties listed in the company’s filings with the
Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) and available on the
SEC’s website at www.sec.gov,
including our most recently filed periodic report, to which your
attention is directed. We do not undertake any obligation to publicly
update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of
new information, future developments or otherwise, except as required by

© 2019 Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates. All rights
reserved. Western Digital, the Western Digital logo, G-Technology,
SanDisk, WD, SweRV Core, and OmniXtend are registered trademarks or
trademarks of Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates in the US
and/or other countries. Tofino is a trademark of Barefoot Networks. All
other marks are the property of their respective owners.


Laura Bakken
Western Digital Media Relations
[email protected]

Peter Andrew
Western Digital Investor Relations
[email protected]

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