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Jay Shotwell

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ZF Micro Announces Collaboration with

PC Certify/PC-Diag Inc. to Provide Test Suite for

ZFx86 486 PC-on-a-Chip

Palo Alto, California, October 30, 2007: Today ZF Micro Solutions, Inc., manufacturers of the ZFx86 486 PC-on-a-Chip announced the collaboration with PC Certify/PC-Diag, Inc., developers of PC discovery, diagnostic, benchmark, and utility products for end users, technicians, help-desks, computer manufacturers, resellers, and OEMs. The software will be included with the ZFx86 Integrated Development System to help ZF’s OEM customers test, configure, and perform preventive computer hardware maintenance during all phases of an embedded PC’s life-cycle: Hardware Development, Manufacturing, Maintenance and Customer Support. The PC Certify/PC-Diag,Inc. family is based on award-winning test technology that has been in continuous development and refinement since 1989. The software discovers and reports what is in the system, tests it for functionality, tests it for performance, tells the user what actions to perform in order to repair any discovered faults, and provides utilities to assist the user in system maintenance.

The ZFx86 is an x86 System-on-a-Chip incorporating 486 motherboard functionality in a single device. It runs a wide variety of operating systems including DOS, Linux, Windows 95/98/NT/CE and most Real-Time systems. It comes bundled with the ZF Embedded BIOS based on a Phoenix Technologies kernel so OEMs do not have to pay BIOS license fees or incur expensive and time-consuming BIOS ports. At less than 1Watt it is the lowest power x86 embedded controller on the market. The patented ZF FailSafe System makes it the only X86 System-on-a-Chip that boots autonomously on power-up and can operate even if all system software has been destroyed or corrupted. FailSafe also allows upgrades over the Internet and eliminates the risk of irrecoverable crashes. It is the perfect End-Of-Life Replacement for 186, 386 or 486 products other manufacturers have recently discontinued eliminating the need to re-write or re-validate code that is debugged and functional.

About ZF Micro Solutions, Inc. is a privately held company founded by David Feldman, the creator of the PC/104 IEEE standard and the 5¼ inch form factor embedded Single Board Computer. Feldman pioneered FailSafe systems in 1995 when he founded ZF. The company reduced small form factor boards to a single chip combining x86 PC functionality with ZF’s patented fail-safe technology. ZF Micro Solutions (www.zfmicro.com ) is headquartered in Palo Alto, California.

About PC Diag Inc is a premier USA developer and manufacturer of diagnostic test products for personal computers. All PC Certify Inc products are available worldwide through distributors or directly from PC Certify Inc.  Contact PC Diag Inc at phone (888) 689-2978, FAX (800) 303-6027 for more information. Also visit the company web site at http://www.pc-diagnostics.com


"If you have anything to do with maintenance or repair,
call these guys immediately" -
John C. Dvorak

Read our Review in MaximumPC Magazine!
"Having a copy of PC Certify around is akin to having a little X-ray machine on a floppy disk."

Read our Review in MaximumPC Magazine!
"PCUpgrade's - Utility of the Month"
PCUpgrade Magazine


As reviewed in MaximumPC Magazine

As reviewed in MaximumPC Magazine - February 2002

Download our MaximumPC Magazine Review! Download Review


If the Swiss Army developed a tool for diagnosing and treating common PC maladies, we think it would look a lot like PC Certify. Comprising more than 400 diagnostic tests and utilities, the software fits on a single floppy disk, with room left over for voluminous help files, tutorials, and log files. While you'll still need a decent trauma kit and replacement parts to get a seriously ill PC up and running, PC Certify can shave hours of time that might otherwise be spent tediously examining every component in search of the culprit.

PC Certify operates from any pure DOS environment (such as Safe Mode command prompt; not that DOS-window fakery), and tests can be executed in a batch run or individually, subsystem by subsystem.

"Having a copy of PC Certify around is akin to having a little X-ray machine on a floppy disk."

Even candystripers will be able to pop is the disk and test hard drives, floppy drives, I/O ports, CPU, and memory for an instantaneous, Star Trek-like diagnoses - all while receiving a basic education on how PC's work (for example, one help file explains how to interpret Hex dumps from crashed programs). seasoned professionals can trade up to more sophisticated PC Certify versions that perform remote diagnostics, back up the Master Boot Record, and place the systems under heavy stress for burn-in testing. One of our favorite features backs up CMOS settings, so a battery swap won't force you to re-tweak your BIOS.

Young'uns may find the DOS-based interface a bit jarring to work with, but hey, it's still easier and less awkward than administering a barium enema.

- LOGAN DECKER, MaximumPC Magazine

Monthly Specials

Engineered for the Professional PC Repair and Maintenance Technician
PC-Diagnostics Lite
MSRP: $49.95
Price: $29.95

PC-Diagnostics Novice
MSRP: $119.00
Price: $77.00

PC-Diag Pro Remote
MSRP: $189.95
Price: $59.95

PC-Diagnostics Pro Suite
MSRP: $679.90
Price: $189.95

Professional Kit
MSRP: $968.75
Price: $289.95

Master IT Kit
MSRP: $1367.75
Price: $589.95

Quintum Technologies - USB Drive Burn-In 03/30/07 COMPLIMENTS: On behalf of Quintum technologies, I would like to commend your company, PC Diag, for the development of the new release of Burn-In.  The ability to launch it directly from a USB key is a major factor in choosing your product.   

1.)  Having the application(s) on a USB-key allows Quintum to test a product over a number of days, because of the ample storage space on the key.  In the past we would typically run out of space on the floppy disk before an appropriate number of cycles had been completed.    

2.)  It also allows us to add any custom DOS applications that we may wish to run.  Addition vendor specific diagnostic checks are typically run on every unit.  The additional space on the USB-key allows us to store and run these applications from one source.  This saves us time and ultimately money in training, production and not having to support different media types. 

  3.)  Having enough space on one key for everything makes them all identical.  Every key is instantly replaceable.  If a different piece of media was needed for each application, it would be costly, confusing, and difficult at best to track and concatenate the results of a unit.  

4.)  The USB-Keys act as a secondary back-up source of the test result files.  The keys allow Quintum to store the results of every unit that a particular key has tested.  The space allows the storage of, not only the PC-Diag logs, but the logs of the third party vendors as well.  It could prove useful if the test results were ever lost due to a corporate system hard disk drive failure.  Additionally we found a trend in our original application where it turned out that a particular key had an older version of a program.   Since all of the result files were stored on the key, we found that all the failed units had been tested with this one key.  It made it easier to analyze the issue and find the link to the root cause.  The program was updated and the failures stopped.   

5.)  Having the program on media that is supplied from PC Diag should reduce customer service calls.  If the customer is allowed to format and partition the USB key, PC-Diag would be dealing with calls on un-supported hardware, not to mention unhappy customers.  There is little time for things that do not work out of the box.  Supplying the code pre-configured on approved media eliminates these potential customer issues.

6.)  It is important to Quintum Technologies, Inc. to Burn-In our systems at their maximum rated temperature.  We are glad to see that the Burn-In software on the PC-Diag supplied USB-key has been functioning well, continuously for twelve (12) days at temperatures ranging from 45 to 50 ºC.  This was a pleasant and welcome surprise, as it is critical that the keys can survive this environment.  

7.)  The Bench Mark Tests look very intriguing.  We would like to see these develop further as a means of system to system performance comparison.  

Michael R. Fink
Hardware Engineer
Quintum Technologies, Inc.,