The VMEbus architecture has become one of the most successful interconnect standards in the history of embedded computing. A key element of that success has been the VMEbus mandate for backwards compatibility. Each new addition to the VMEbus roadmap has maintained mechanical, electrical, and software compatibility with all pre-existing VMEbus boards, whether it was a protocol enhancement such as 2eSST, or a new extension such as StarFabric.
Although the processing throughput and functional density provided by today’s 6U VME boards could hardly have been imagined by the original VMEbus architects, all of today’s boards are still compatible with VMEbus boards designed 20 years ago. As VMEbus is enhanced to support the next generation of interconnect technology, the VMEbus community’s commitment to backwards compatibility will continue to be critical to VMEbus system integrators and end users as they evaluate architectures for new development projects.