Zephyr is a scalable real-time operating system (RTOS) supporting multiple hardware architectures, optimized for resource constrained devices, and built with security in mind.

The Zephyr RTOS is based on a small-footprint kernel designed for use on resource-constrained systems: from simple embedded environmental sensors and LED wearables to sophisticated smart watches and IoT wireless gateways.

You can get the Zephyr source, install the Zephyr SDK, build sample applications, and run them on the Corstone-300 Fixed Virtual Platform (FVP).

Host platform

Zephyr SDK is available on Windows, Linux, and macOS hosts. However the FVP is only available for Windows and Linux hosts.

These instructions assume an Ubuntu Linux host machine or use of Arm Virtual Hardware (AVH).

Corstone-300 FVP

The Corstone-300 FVP is available from the Arm Ecosystem FVP page. Setup instructions are given in the install guide .

Alternatively, you can access the FVP with Arm Virtual Hardware . Setup instructions are given in the Arm Virtual Hardware install guide .

Install the required software to build Zephyr

  1. Add the Kitware repository to your sources list

The repository is needed to install the Zephyr dependencies.


            wget https://apt.kitware.com/kitware-archive.sh
sudo bash kitware-archive.sh
  1. Install the Zephyr prerequisites

Use the apt command to install the required software:


            sudo -E apt install --no-install-recommends -y git cmake ninja-build gperf ccache dfu-util device-tree-compiler wget python3-dev python3-pip python3-setuptools python3-tk python3-wheel xz-utils file make gcc gcc-multilib g++-multilib libsdl2-dev libmagic1 xterm
  1. Install the Python dependencies

Install Python dependencies and activate a new virtual environment:


            sudo apt install -y python3-venv
ls -al
mkdir zephyrproject
python3 -m venv zephyrproject/.venv
source zephyrproject/.venv/bin/activate
pip install west
  1. Download the Zephyr source code and install additional python dependencies declared in the source:

            west init zephyrproject
cd zephyrproject
west update
west zephyr-export
pip install -r zephyr/scripts/requirements.txt

Install Zephyr SDK

You need the Zephyr Software Development Kit (SDK) to build Zephyr applications.

It contains the compiler, assembler, linker and other programs needed for building Zephyr applications.

Download, verify, extract and setup the Zephyr SDK bundle, downloadable from the Zephyr project on GitHub . The instructions shown in this learning path are with version v0.16.0 of the SDK.


            cd ~
wget https://github.com/zephyrproject-rtos/sdk-ng/releases/download/v0.16.0/zephyr-sdk-0.16.0_linux-x86_64.tar.xz
tar -xf zephyr-sdk-0.16.0_linux-x86_64.tar.xz
cd zephyr-sdk-0.16.0
./setup.sh -t all
cd ~

Build the hello world sample application

There are sample applications included in the Zephyr source code repository.

You can build the hello world application for the Corstone-300 using west:


            cd zephyrproject/zephyr
west build -p auto -b mps3_an547 samples/hello_world

MPS3 AN547 is the hardware twin of the Corstone-300 FVP.

The application binaries are placed in the ~/zephyrproject/zephyr/build/zephyr/ directory.

Run Zephyr application on Corstone-300 FVP

Using local machine with the FVP installed


            FVP_Corstone_SSE-300_Ethos-U55 -a build/zephyr/zephyr.elf -C mps3_board.visualisation.disable-visualisation=1 --simlimit 30

Using Arm Virtual Hardware

To run on AVH:


            VHT_Corstone_SSE-300_Ethos-U55 -a build/zephyr/zephyr.elf -C mps3_board.visualisation.disable-visualisation=1 --simlimit 30
Optional switches

-C mps3_board.visualisation.disable-visualisation=1 disables the FVP visualization. This can speed up launch time for the FVP.

--simlimit 30 terminates the FVP after 30 seconds. Remove or extend if necessary. The FVP can also be manually terminated with Ctrl+C.

You will see telnet terminal windows pop up from the running simulation on the FVP with the output similar to:


        *** Booting Zephyr OS build zephyr-v3.4.0-3573-g79158a777b37  ***
Hello World! mps3_an547


You have successfully built a Zephyr application and run it on the Corstone-300.

Additional applications

You can try some of the other sample applications included or build your own.

To build the Dining Philosophers example, use:


            west build -p auto -b mps3_an547 samples/philosophers

Run the new executable at build/zephyr/zephyr.elf on the FVP as above . The output will be seen in a terminal.