In my last corporate EDA job I had customers in Korea that were evaluating a new circuit simulator and getting strange results. When I asked, “Could you send me your test case?” the reply was always, “No, we cannot let any of our IC design data leave the building because of security concerns.”
Today I had a phone conversation with Janet Peterson of Mentor Graphics to learn more about what they are doing to address this scenario of an IC design company needing EDA tool support but wanting to protect their Intellectual Property (IP) under development.
Q: What does the technology from Imera allow you to do at Mentor?
A: One thing that we can do in support now is to view the screen of a customer while they are using one of our IC tools like Calibre for physical verification, or Tessent for test.
Q: Why couldn’t I just use something like WebEx to share a desktop?
A: We do use WebEx for casual conferencing, however you need something with more security than what WebEx was designed for and that’s where the Imera techology comes in.
Q: What does a customer need to start using this secure desktop sharing?
A: Imera has software called TeamLinks and then at Mentor we have some Imera hardware called an appliance gateway connected to our network.
Q: Can you tell what kind of connections happen between Mentor and customers?
A: Yes, we have a complete log of all activity happening through our appliance gateway.
Q: What about being able to remotely control your EDA tool at a customer site?
A: Yes, from our office we can remotely and securely control the customer desktop and look at a schematic, or run their tools to see what is happening.
Q: What else can you do with this Imera technology?
A: We can actually let our customers run a pre-release version of software or a new feature all remotely. The Mentor software physically runs in Wilsonville, Oregon yet the customer can try their design on this new software without having to download and install it. The customer data is kept secure and this process meets their strict security requirements for IP not leaving the building.
Q: Can you summarize the benefits of using this secure sharing environment?
A: Sure, customers can now show us how they are using our EDA tools and what the results are. If there’s an issue then we can more quickly understand it and fix it, even rerun the same design on the new software to confirm that it’s resolved. We’re really saving time and travel expenses, plus the customer is now receiving much better support.
Q: Who else is using this Imera technology?
A: Lots of high tech companies: TSMC, Cadence, Synopsys, Magma, Infineon, Renesas, IDA, Mediatek, MoSys, AMD, Broadcom, Marvell, NetLogic, Cymer, Nikon, Micronic and Ambarella.
If you’re interested to learn more then consider registering for the San Jose seminar on January 31st from Noon to 2:00PM.
- Introduction by Daniel Nenni
- Imera Presentation (by Bruce Feeney (15 minutes))
[INDENT=2]Secure connections for collaboration with suppliers and partners
[INDENT=2]Security, Export Control and Legal Compliance
[INDENT=2]Statement of the problem we’re trying to solve
[INDENT=2]Remote source code debug
[INDENT=2]Remote critical issue support
[INDENT=2]Secure engineering collaboration
- MGC Customer Support Presentation (30 minutes)
[INDENT=2]Overview w/ benefits
[INDENT=2]Use Case # 1 – Troubleshooting a SR between Support Engineer with customer
[INDENT=2]Use Case # 2 – Debugging a DEI with Support Engineer, Customer, and R&D Engineer
- Q & A (10-15 minutes)