CAmkES (component architecture for microkernel-based embedded systems) is a software development and runtime framework for quickly and reliably building microkernel-based multiserver (operating) systems. It follows a component-based software engineering approach to software design, resulting in a system that is modelled as a set of interacting software components. These software components have explicit interaction interfaces and a system design that explicitly details the connections between the components.

The development framework provides:

Setting up your machine

Build dependencies

Download CAmkES

Download CAmkES source code from GitHub:

mkdir camkes-project
cd camkes-project
repo init -u
repo sync

Build and run simple application

The following will configure, build, and run a simple example CAmkES system:

make arm_simple_defconfig
make silentoldconfig

If you haven’t done so already, change the toolchain to the one for your system. You can do this by running make menuconfig, then going to Toolchain Options -> Cross compiler prefix. You will most likely be compiling with arm-linux-gnueabi-.

qemu-system-arm -M kzm -nographic -kernel images/capdl-loader-experimental-image-arm-imx31

In order to clean up after building (for example because you’ve set up a new configuration and you want to make sure that everything gets rebuilt correctly) do:

make clean

Read Tutorial

To learn about developing your own CAmkES application, read the Tutorials#CAmkES_tutorials.

Camkes Terminology/Glossary

Can be found here.


Information about the x86 camkes vm can be found here.

Visual CAmkES

CAmkES comes with a tool for visualising the components and connections making up an application. For more info, see here.

Changes in CAmkES 3

The current version of CAmkES introduces a number of syntactic and functional changes. For details about what’s changed, see here.


Here’s some information about the internals of the CAmkES tool: CAmkESInternals

Command Line Interface

There is an experimental command line interface for managing CAmkES projects. Read more: CAmkESCLI

Python Dependencies

The Build Dependencies section covers how to install the python dependencies. The python metapackage, camkes-deps, is implemented in the CAmkES repo here.