Re: [SI-LIST] : Hspice: Windows vs Unix

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From: Kim Helliwell ([email protected])
Date: Mon Apr 09 2001 - 14:36:52 PDT

Anthony Davidson wrote:
> We are looking at Star-Hspice from Avanti! as a signal integrity analysis
> tool to evaluate/analyze high speed interconnects. We have decided to
> purchase some licenses but now we have to decide to buy a Windows version or
> a Unix (Solaris, I believe) version.
> According to Avanti!, Windows Hspice is a subset of Unix Hspice. The
> information I have is this:
> CMI is not supported on Windows. CMI is a development library allowing one
> to create MOSFET models in C. This will prevent us from using any vendor's
> MOSFET model that was generated with CMI, however, this may not be a problem
> because most manufacturers use the BSIM3 model nowadays. Does anybody know
> if BSIM3 models are better/worse than models generated with CMI? Will I be
> limited in anyway by not having CMI?
> Avanti! says that some 3rd party output formats are only supported on Unix,
> such as CadenceLink and MentorLink. Does anybody have any experiences they
> can describe using such links? What do these links allow you to do?
> Finally, has anybody used Hspice on both Windows and Unix platforms? Would
> you say that you prefer one platform over the other? Why?
> Any other comments would be greatly appreciated.
> Thanks in advance for your help!!
> Anthony Davidson

I cannot speak to the output formats issue, but I have some thoughts on
the BSIM3 vs models installed with CMI. On one hand, BSIM3 is a
standard, and BSIM4 may become one also as smaller geometries are
achieved; will HSPICE support BSIM4, and if so, how soon? Do you know
of vendor models you simply have to have, that can be installed with
CMI? Is is possible that HSPICE already supports them? (HSPICE is
famous for supporting a large number of MOSFET models, after all!)
So you may simply be fine with the NT version.

On the other hand, why limit your future possibilities? It sounds like
NT would do exactly that. Is there some other consideration (such as
cost) that make the Unix alternative unattractive? If you think there is,
have you considered the cost of maintaining an NT network vs. a Unix network
(assuming that you are not already bearing both costs now, that is!)

Personally, given the choice, I would opt for the Unix solution every time,
unless local company politics prevented (in which case, I would either not
be there in the first place or be looking to leave ASAP!). In your circumstances,
it's obviously the more flexible choice, and a smaller initial cost of an NT
network is deceptive, since ongoing maintenance could easily eat up any
apparent savings, in my opinion and observation. Talk to your IT guys about

Kim Helliwell
Senior CAE Engineer
Acuson Corporation
Phone: 650 694 5030  FAX: 650 943 7260

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