For all x86 modules MSC is using the advanced AMI Aptio V BIOS which implements the UEFI architecture with Secure Boot enhancements. MSC continuously improves its BIOS solutions with new functions and technologies such as Advanced Boot Device Configuration. MSC is offering to adapt the BIOS for customers, but is also offering the MSC BIOS Configuration Tool which enables users to easily modify BIOS binary images and set configuration defaults, add splash screen images, pre-define passwords etc. MSC is maintaining user-friendly interfaces such as EAPI (Embedded Application Programming Interface) to allow low-level control of non-volatile memory, I2C bus access, backlight settings, watchdog timer etc.
The AMI Aptio® V BIOS as used by MSC supports the “Chain of Trust” according to the TCG (Trusted Computing Group):
- From power-on every step is monitored
- Hash values in TPM are compared to actual values of SW modules
- Boot process stops if integrity of one chain link is doubtful
- SecureFlash update tool allows signed update files only
- Root of Trust cannot be modified
MSC is supporting all popular and important operating systems, i.e. Windows 10, Windows 7 and Linux. Older modules are supporting Windows 7 and/or Windows 8. For most recent modules, Linux support is based on the Yocto Project which is the standard for up-to-date embedded systems controlled by Linux.
MSC on-board controller
MSC implements a powerful microcontroller (EC) on all advanced modules which helps to control correct operation of the module and takes over most of the house holding functions: it controls the fan speed, monitors temperatures and voltage levels and controls power on/ off of the board. Besides health monitoring and logging, the EC has implemented a power-on and boot watchdog and display backlight control. The optional smart battery support makes it easy to design full battery powered systems.