OsmocomBB hardware migration to SDR

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Harald Welte laforge at gnumonks.org
Fri Jun 24 08:33:09 UTC 2016

Hi Vadim,

On Thu, Jun 23, 2016 at 06:45:45PM +0600, Вадим Яницкий wrote:
> It's no secret for everyone, that today OsmocomBB is not actively maintained
> as well as OpenBSC, for example. 

This is true, but even OpenBSC and related projects are suffering from a
lack of attention.  Despite being one of the founders of sysmocom, I
really don't like to see the development and maintenance responsibility
within one entity (or, let's say Holger and me privately, and sysmocom
asa company).  We need more contributors in all Osmocom projects.

> I think it's mostly due to supported hardware limitations. 

Honestly, I'm not sure.  The big difference is that there are commercial
users of OpenBSC, OsmoBTS, etc., and they can afford to fund some of the
work on those projects.  For OsmocomBB I don't think there's much of a
chacne for commercial interest.  You can buy an entire phone for USD 10
these days, including a license for the protocol stack / software - so
why bother investing in a "new" implementation of GSM.

There are some exceptions like test devices or virtual phones for load
generation, but those are also not interesting to most people anymore in

OsmocomBB doesn't support GPRS, EDGE, UMTS, HSPA and likely never will,
unless a maniac comes around who invests several months of full-time +
spare-time work into what most people would considre a hopeless cause.

For LTE, there's luckily the excellent free software srsUE
implemntation.  However, it requires a Core-i5, unless somebody manages
to transplant the protocol stack onto one of the commercially found LTE
baseband / PHY implementations actually used in phones.

Getting back further to your question:  Even on the supported hardware
(Calypso based phones), there are still many bugs and features missing,
and nobody contributes.  It makes me quite sad, as Andreas and I have
put in a lot of energy to get the project going, but then nobody really
got int carrying it along further.

> Currently I am looking for developers interested in this subject. 

We all are, but mostly the work gets done when we are not looking but
actually writing code :P  No offence, I just couldn't resist...

All the best, I'd definitely love to see progress on the "SDR based PHY
for OsmocomBB" front.

- Harald Welte <laforge at gnumonks.org>           http://laforge.gnumonks.org/
"Privacy in residential applications is a desirable marketing option."
                                                  (ETSI EN 300 175-7 Ch. A6)

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