The Sercos SoftMaster industrial Ethernet master is now available for free on SourceForge.net. Sercos SoftMaster can be implemented on most standard industrial-PC hardware including X86 or ARM. It is supported by a variety of operating systems, and is flexible and economical because it does not require any dedicated hardware.
Offered by Bosch Rexroth under MIT open-source license, the software can also come with a Sercos-on-a-Stick livesystem demo on a free USB thumb drive. The livesystem is useful for those looking to learn how to use the software.
The master works with standard Ethernet controllers using suitable real-time operating system. For medium- to high-synchronicity requirements with less than 100 ns jitter and bus cycle times of less than 125µs, the use of a TTS-capable Ethernet controller (such as the Intel I210) and a suitable real-time operating system is recommended. If two of these Ethernet controllers are synchronized, ring architecture with seamless redundancy is also possible.