First, the answer: EVB is short for EValuation Board. EVBs are typically created by silicon vendors for the sole purpose of evaluating a chip’s performance, developing applications and features for it and assisting developers in becoming familiar with the various features provided by the chip. Most importantly, EVBs are not general-purpose computer systems; instead, they typically have minimal hardware for a user interface and limited utility.
EVBs are also often known as development boards. To help paint the picture of what an EVB is, Wikipedia describes development boards in this way:
“A microprocessor development board is a printed circuit board containing a microprocessor and the minimal support logic needed for a computer engineer to become acquainted with the microprocessor on the board and to learn to program it. It also served users of the microprocessor as a method to prototype applications in products.”
“Unlike a general-purpose system such as a home computer, usually a development board contains little or no hardware dedicated to a user interface. It will have some provision to accept and run a user-supplied program, such as downloading a program through a serial port to flash memory, or some form of programmable memory in a socket in earlier systems.”
For example, a System-on-Chip (SoC) manufacturer such as ASPEED Technology will provide its AST2500 BMC chip on an EVB so that system vendors can test it for use in their proprietary hardware platforms. AMI will also use an EVB as part of this process by loading our MegaRAC® SP-X™ BMC Firmware onto the EVB.
By doing so, we can then demonstrate the various features of our BMC firmware to our customers on the same AST2500 chip that they will use in their hardware/system designs. This gives our customers the capability to understand how SP-X will function on the AST2500 hardware, and also allow them to make customizations and allowances for its performance and functionality for that specific chip should they desire to do so.
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