Canonical Ubuntu Core 22 optimised for IoT and embedded devices

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Canonical has released Ubuntu Core 22, the fully containerised Ubuntu 22.04 LTS variant optimised for IoT and edge devices, that is now available to download.

The release brings Ubuntu’s comprehensive operating system (OS) and services to a complete range of embedded and IoT devices.

IoT manufacturers face complex challenges when it comes to deploying devices, while ensuring security and remote management at scale is also becoming increasingly challenging as device fleets expand. Ubuntu Core 22 has been developed to help manufacturers by providing an ultra-secure, resilient, and low-touch OS, backed by a growing ecosystem of silicon and ODM partners.

“Our goal at Canonical is to provide secure, reliable open source everywhere - from the development environment to the cloud, down to the edge and to devices,” said Mark Shuttleworth, CEO of Canonical. “With this release, and Ubuntu’s real-time kernel, we are ready to expand the benefits of Ubuntu Core across the entire embedded world.”

The Ubuntu 22.04 LTS real-time kernel, now available in beta, delivers high performance, ultra-low latency and workload predictability for time-sensitive applications.

It includes a fully preemptible kernel to ensure time-bound responses. Canonical partners with silicon and hardware manufacturers to enable advanced real-time features out of the box on Ubuntu Certified Hardware.

Ubuntu Core provides a robust, fully containerised Ubuntu, which breaks down the monolithic Ubuntu image into packages known as snaps - including the kernel, OS and applications. Each snap has an isolated sandbox that includes the application’s dependencies, to make it fully portable and reliable. Canonical’s Snapcraft framework enables on-rails snap development for rapid iteration, automated testing and reliable deployment.

Every device running Ubuntu Core also has a dedicated IoT App Store, which offers full control over the apps on their device, and can create, publish and distribute software on one platform. The IoT App Store offers enterprises a sophisticated software management solution, enabling a range of new on-premise features.

The system guarantees transactional mission-critical over-the-air (OTA) updates of the kernel, OS and applications - updates will always complete successfully, or roll back automatically to the previous working version, so a device cannot be ‘bricked’ by an incomplete update. Snaps also provides delta updates to minimise network traffic, and digital signatures to ensure software integrity and provenance.

Ubuntu Core includes advanced security features out of the box, such as secure boot, full disk encryption, secure recovery and strict confinement of the OS and applications.

The Ubuntu Certified Hardware programme defines a range of off the shelf IoT and edge devices trusted to work with Ubuntu. The programme also includes a commitment to continuous testing of certified hardware at Canonical’s labs with every security update over the full lifecycle of the device.