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WARNING! The page needs an overhaul. Most of the information is still correct, but the project is in a very late stage and documentation is not my top priority right now ;) WARNING!

Diese Seite behandelt ein fortgeschrittenes Projekt des FeD eV. Es wird betreut durch riot. Kostet ca. Unknown und ist zu 80% fertig

80% fertig



This project is called OctoCore (aka "the 8legged beast"). The name is quite obvious. Its because of the eight cores on our board. We had some other names in mind. These are here.

First prototype


To summarize in a few words: The Octocore is a very tiny (half of a euro-board, 80x100mm) full featured computer. It has almost the same I/O as your usual off-shelf PC. It doesn't have very much raw computing power (8 x 80 MHz), but therefore doesn't waste much energy either.

Where to get

You can either buy kits personally (at the hackerspace) or order via webshop, when it is ready.

The eagle schematics etc will be released here, after the first more or less working prototype has been completed.

Concept of this Computer


The fine Parallax Propeller is the main CPU. With its whopping 32 IO lines, plenty of hardware can be integrated. We're not gonna build a fully modular machine, as we'll be integrating lots of hardware on the mainboard already. These are:

Integrated stuff
  • /EEPROM a 24c512 64KByte EEPROM
  • /TV-Out (Composite)
  • /VGA easily 1280x1024 with 4 colors
  • /Sound Stereo Out with a 3,5mm jack and integrated TDA-Amp
  • /Diagnostics 8 diagnostic leds
  • /Port two 8 and two 4 pin I/O port header - double usage! One with VGA the other with Ethernet & TV-Out. Sorry pals.
  • /PS2 2 ps/2 ports for a keyboard and a mouse
  • /USB switchable USB port for usb-host (either this or the second ps/2 port activated)
  • /Network a RJ45 Magjack with TCP/IP(V4 maybe even V6)
  • /PoE integrated Power-over-Ethernet (not standard conform, you'll need an /Modules/Injector injector.
  • /Infrared
  • /RGB onboard rgb led with external connectors
  • /Serial for programming/booting the CPU (no, this one won't be USB-Host)
  • /SD a microSD slot
  • /Reset Machine got stuck? Reset button included.

To use the two large IO-Ports, you will have to sacrifice VGA / diag leds (Port 1) and/or Ethernet / RGB-Led (Port 2) as those are dual used. The two small ports share MicroSD (Port 4) and Audio / PS2-Mouse (Port 3)

Sorry for the inconvenience, but we "only" have 32 pins ;)

Extra Modules

Some interesting addon-modules for the 4 I/O Ports are being developed. Have a look.


The OS for this platform is called /OOPS (for OctoCoreOPeratingSystem).

What can you achieve?


LTF made a nice demo for the Breakpoint 2009 using a standard propeller demokit (with VGA and Stereosound output): <youtube>6gEMKYnUADE</youtube>

General gadgets

Lady Ada, Robert Quattlebaum and some others invented the fine yBox2 project.

Other general purpose machines

What happens if you throw 3 Propeller cores together in one box? You get the Hive-Computer


What is being planned to do with this machine?

  • LedWall main controller
  • Home Automation for the hackerspace
  • Gaming platform

There is waaaay more stuff possible:


What can you do with this monster?

  • a simple gaming platform (equivalent to SuperNES or other non-3D consoles, look for the all famous Hydra)
  • of course you can build a ybox2 with it :)
  • Home automation
  • Alarm systems
  • a nifty VJ tool
  • a nifty musicians tool, even an instrument
  • robot brains
  • Workshop-Controller (e.g. for Computer Aided Manufacturing ([1]))
  • ... go ahead, make up some more!!1 :)



The OctoCore is sold as a complete kit including PCB, CPU (incl. all other µControllers), and all other parts.

We are preparing some soldering Instructions to help you build the kit.

For help with the Software, have a look at OOPS' documentation.


Images of the rev C-2 prototype following...

An early, yet unsoldered prototype (pcb production failed ;) is based on this board layout:

REV10B Board.png

(Which is Rev. 10 B)

Here you see revision 8 of the mainboard. Still far from being finished!

Mainboard 8.png


You can try various means to get support:

  • Join the irc-chat:
#octocore on IRC-Net
  • Try to send a mail to the mailinglist. (no list yet ;)
  • If you're willing to pay or are very very very patient, you can try to personally contact some related guys from the club ;D
  • No, we won't open a forum