Synopsys has decided to adopt ARM's Amba on-chip bus as the favoured way to link the main cores in its DesignWare library of intellectual property (IP).
The California-based EDA firm plans to use Amba to make it easier to incorporate 'star IP' cores, such as processors, in DesignWare. But the company has decided to stick with its existing yearly subscription model for DesignWare by only including models for ARM, MIPS and other processors, not the cores themselves.
Customers will have to negotiate licensing terms with IP suppliers, although Synopsys will provide design views for early evaluation.
Phil Dworsky, director of marketing and business development for Synopsys, said: "There are three partners who are full partners: Infineon, mips and NEC. We are working with them to make their cores fully reusable. We are packaging them to make them work with the [Amba] on-chip bus. Once the licence is secured, we will deliver the RTL [hardware design]."
Synopsys will provide ARM's simulation models but the UK processor cores company is only 'endorsing' Synopsys' approach.
Dworsky says Synopsys will port larger cores, such as PCI and PCI-X bus interfaces, to Amba: "We have a separate development on Amba subsystems. They are peripherals such as timers, interrupt controllers and Uart."
The company is looking for other suppliers "with IP complementary to DesignWare" to join the programme. Synopsys will support version 2.0 of the Amba specification initially. Cores for the switch-fabric version, multi-layer Amba hardware bus (AHB), and AHB Lite, will arrive in mid-2002.