Abstract

This paper presents Sora, a fully programmable software radio platform on commodity PC architectures. Sora combines the performance and fidelity of hardware SDR platforms with the programmability and flexibility of general-purpose processor (GPP) SDR platforms. Sora uses both hardware and software techniques to address the challenges of using PC architectures for highspeed SDR. The Sora hardware components consist of a radio front-end for reception and transmission, and a radio control board for high-throughput, low-latency data transfer between radio and host memories. Sora makes extensive use of features of contemporary processor architectures to accelerate wireless protocol processing and satisfy protocol timing requirements, including using dedicated CPU cores, large low-latency caches to store lookup tables, and SIMD processor extensions for highly efficient physical layer processing on GPPs. Using the Sora platform, we have developed a demonstration radio system called SoftWiFi. SoftWiFi seamlessly interoperates with commercial 802.11a/b/g NICs, and achieves equivalent performance as commercial NICs at each modulation.