The Traverse Ten64 Brings Eight ARM64 Cores, Mainline Linux to Bear

Traverse Technologies' Ten64 board is a networking-focused platform with an eight-core, 64-bit Arm CPU.

Gareth Halfacree
a year ago

UPDATE (10/1/2020): The crowdfunding campaign for the Ten64, an eight-core ARM64 networking platform, is now live on Crowd Supply. Pricing has been set at $579 for the "complete kit," needing only RAM to be added to be operational, which Traverse Technologies says is a "deeply discounted" price compared to the planned MSRP.

An optional "NAS DIY Kit" add-on, available for $70, converts the Ten64 for use as a network attached storage (NAS) system, and includes an ATX power supply adapter, I/O faceplate for mini-ITX or larger PC chassis, and a Marvel 9215-based four-port SATA controller.

Shipping for both is scheduled to begin in late February 2021.

Original article continues below.

Australian design house Traverse Technologies has officially unveiled the Ten64, an eight-core ARM64 networking platform designed to ease the development process through the promise of “close-to-mainline” support for Arm’s Trusted Firmware, U-Boot, and the Linux Kernel, ahead of the launch of its crowdfunding campaign — and in doing so has confirmed that its prior Five64 design has been superseded.

Based around NXP’s QorIQ LS1088 system-on-chip, which includes eight Arm Cortex-A53 64-bit processing cores running at 1.6GHz with virtualization, cryptographic, and input/output memory management unit (IOMMU) extensions, the Ten64 is based on a mini-ITX form factor and includes user-upgradeable DDR4 SODIMM memory support for up to 32GB with or without ECC error correction. There’s 8MB of QSPI NOR flash and 128MB of NAND flash storage on board, plus M.2 NVMe for expansion.

As a network-focused device, there’s no surprise to see an impressive array of connectivity: The board includes eight gigabit Ethernet ports at the rear plus two 10-gigabit Ethernet SFP+ports, all of which can be configured as independent interfaces, along with two M.2 Key M, two mini-PCI Express 2.0, and one M.2 Key B ports, two USB 3.0 ports at the rear, and a further USB 3.0 port internally alongside a serial console accessible via USB Type-C.

Traverse’s key selling point isn’t necessarily the hardware, however: The company is making much of the software support, which will be based on as-close-to-mainline-as-possible versions of U-Boot and Linux 4.19 or above. The board will be able to boot OpenWrt and other Linux-based distributions, network-specific or otherwise, the team has promised, including from the M.2 storage slot.

The Ten64 replaces Traverse’s earlier Five64 design, which the company has been working on since 2017 but had yet to launch. Crowdfunding for the Ten64 begins in October, with more information available on the project’s Crowd Supply campaign page.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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