VxWorks 7 SDK for Raspberry Pi 3


The VxWorks 7 SDK is a development environment dedicated to VxWorks application developers which include the following features:

This guide helps you get up and running with developing applications for platforms running VxWorks. You can use it for creating new applications, or just exploration of VxWorks capabilities.

Setting up the development environment

You should start by downloading a VxWorks SDK for your platform of choice from https://labs.windriver.com and unpacking it. Refer to the documentation in docs in the unpacked SDK for additional information on creating and debugging applications.

OS requirements

The SDKs are meant to run on Linux hosts. Some of the examples in this document are specific to Debian derivatives.


Host dependencies

On Debian derivatives, the following packages need to be installed:

sudo apt install build-essential libc6:i386

Having an FTP server installed on your development host will make application deployment easier and allow you to access the host file system from a VxWorks target.

To accommodate for the varying runtime configurations of the VxWorks kernel images included in the SDKs, you may be interested in using an FTP server option based on pyftpdlib.

Install pyftpdlib.

sudo apt install python-pip
sudo pip install pyftpdlib

Booting VxWorks on Raspberry Pi 3B / 3B+

  1. To create the SD card, download the firmware from:


    E.g. wget https://github.com/raspberrypi/firmware/archive/1.20200212.tar.gz

    Format an SD card as a FAT32 file system and copy the contents of the "boot" directory from the downloaded firmware to the SD card.

  2. Copy the files in bsps/rpi_3_0_1_1_0/boot/scard/ to the SD card.

  3. Download the u-boot.bin file from https://github.com/Wind-River/vxw7-bsp-raspberry-pi/blob/master/rpi_3- and copy it to the SD card as kernel8.img


    cp u-boot.bin /mnt/boot/kernel8.img

  4. Create a vx directory in the folder where you have copied the files at step 2.


    mkdir /mnt/boot/vx

  5. Copy the VxWorks kernel image to the vx folder


    cp bsps/rpi_3_0_1_1_0/uboot/uVxWorks /mnt/boot/vx/

  6. Connect a USB to serial cable to the Raspberry Pi
    On the Raspberry Pi 3 Model, GPIOs 14 and 15 are used as UART transmit and receive pins (Mini UART).

Connect the USB to serial cable adapter between the Raspberry Pi and your PC. Then start a serial communication program (e.g. minicom) and configure the serial connnection parameters as follows:

Bps/Par/Bits       : 115200 8N1
Hardware Flow Control : No
Software Flow Control : No

After plugging in the SD card in your Raspberry Pi 3B+ and powering it up, the VxWorks kernel previously copied onto the SD card will boot automatically.

U-Boot 2018.11 (Jun 12 2019 - 14:03:07 +0800)

DRAM:  948 MiB
RPI 3 Model B+ (0xa020d3)
MMC:   mmc@7e202000: 0, sdhci@7e300000: 1
Loading Environment from FAT... OK
In:    serial
Out:   vidconsole
Err:   vidconsole
Net:   No ethernet found.
starting USB...
USB0:   scanning bus 0 for devices... 4 USB Device(s) found
       scanning usb for storage devices... 0 Storage Device(s) found
Hit any key to stop autoboot:  0 
6140208 bytes read in 256 ms (22.9 MiB/s)
## Booting kernel from Legacy Image at 08000000 ...
   Image Name:   vxworks
   Image Type:   AArch64 VxWorks Kernel Image (uncompressed)
   Data Size:    6140144 Bytes = 5.9 MiB
   Load Address: 00100000
   Entry Point:  00100000
   Verifying Checksum ... OK
   Loading Kernel Image ... OK
## Starting vxWorks at 0x00100000, device tree at 0x00000000 ...

Target Name: vxTarget 
 _________            _________
 \77777777\          /77777777/
  \77777777\        /77777777/
   \77777777\      /77777777/
    \77777777\    /77777777/
     \77777777\   \7777777/
      \77777777\   \77777/              VxWorks 7 SMP 64-bit
       \77777777\   \777/
        \77777777\   \7/     Core Kernel version:
         \77777777\   -      Build date: Nov 15 2019 09:54:37
           \7777777/         Copyright Wind River Systems, Inc.
            \77777/   -                 1984-2019
             \777/   /7\
              \7/   /777\
               -   -------

                   Board: Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ - ARMv8
               CPU Count: 4
          OS Memory Size: ~947MB
        ED&R Policy Mode: Deployed
     Debug Agent: Started (always)
         Stop Mode Agent: Not started
              BSP Status: *** UNSUPPORTED ***

 Adding 12036 symbols for standalone.

Find USB-Ethernet device: Lan78xx USB Ethernet
Waiting for IP attach...
Attached TCP/IP interface to usb2End unit 0
Connecting to the Network...Done.

Network configuration:
ifname usb2End0 inet mac 00:11:22:33:44:55

This device is also accessible over telnet!
        E.g. telnet


IMPORTANT: If you are using a Raspberry Pi 3B you will need to use a USB-to-Ethernet dongle to enable networking.

For information on the USB networking devices, refer to the following sources:

Application development

Start by opening a Linux terminal window and going to the location of your unpacked VxWorks SDK.

Source the SDK environment file to update your PATH and environmental variables, gaining direct access to the tools included within the SDK.

$ source <SDK_DIR>/toolkit/wind_sdk_env.linux 

Building applications

A "hello world" C application can be built as:

$ $CC hello.c -static -o hello

Make a note of the location of your application.

Running applications

Start an FTP server on port 21 with user "target" and password "vxtarget" and FTP root in the current user's home.

sudo python -m pyftpdlib -p 21 -u target -P vxTarget -d $HOME &

Make a note of the IP address of your development host.

If your Raspberry Pi has successfully completed DHCP negotiation, it will be able to access the host file system via a VxWorks remote file device.

In the vxWorks shell run the following command to create a device named "wrs".

-> netDevCreate ("wrs", "", 1)

Note: Replace with the IP address of your development host (i.e. the one on which you're running the FTP server).

Switch to the cmd shell and navigate to the location of the RTP you have created, now available on the target via the remote file device created previously.


-> cmd
[vxWorks *]# cd wrs
[vxWorks *]# pwd
[vxWorks *]# cd opt
[vxWorks *]# ls
[vxWorks *]# more hello.c
#include <stdio.h>

int main(int argc, char **argv) {
    printf("Hello World\n");
    return 0;
[vxWorks *]#
[vxWorks *]# hello
Launching process 'hello' ...
Process 'hello' (process Id = 0xffff8000005e85d0) launched.
Hello world
[vxWorks *]# 

Refer to the documentation in docs for additional information on creating and debugging applications.

Creating Rust applications

The Rust development environment is set up in a similar manner to the standard application development environment, i.e. by sourcing the SDK environment file.


$ source <SDK_DIR>/toolkit/wind_sdk_env.linux 

Building a simple hello world Rust program

$ cargo new hello
$ cd hello
$ cargo build

This will create an RTP called hello.vxe in the directory target/vxworks-target/build-mode where vxworks-target is one of the targets listed below and build-mode is either debug or release.

For example you might see an RTP in the directory: target/armv7-wrs-vxworks-eabihf/debug/hello.vxe

VxWorks Rust targets:

Run the hello.vxe in the VxWorks shell. You will see the following output:

Hello, world!

Note: For more information on using cargo, including how to customize the build output location or change the build mode from debug to release, see the cargo documentation here https://doc.rust-lang.org/cargo/guide/.