Hardware programming

A platform for low-level experiments


This page is dedicated to my research on low-level hardware programming.  It is very difficult to reach the hardware, when it is hidden behind multiple layers of the operating system.  I have created an exploratory platform consisting of two Intel-based computers connected via RS232 interface.  One computer, the Master, is running Windows and is used to control the second computer. The second one, the NakedCPU, runs essentially without any operating system, hence it is available to truly low-level experiments.


To be fair, NakedCPU is brought to life with a tiny code, NakedOS, which turns CPU into protected mode and begins listening on Serial port.  This platform was featured as a two-part article in two issues of Circuit Cellar magazine.  Click below on the front pages of the magazine to download the PDFs.  The article explains in details how to begin experimenting with Intel CPU, surrounding hardware and how to obtain and understand hardware documentation.  The code is available from the magazine’s FTP here.