RTOS, secure virtualization technology for real-time systems, DO-178B and hypervisor for the most demanding embedded operating system applications...

Embedded Linux: Secure Virtualization for Embedded-Linux SystemsSecure Linux partitions on virtualized hardware with embedded hypervisor

Virtualization security, performance and compatibility in the new wave of embedded Linux


Virtualization for Embedded Linux® builds on more than a decade of embedded-Linux experience at LynuxWorks™, and more than 20 years in UNIX®-like embedded operating systems.

Cutting-edge applications can use Virtualization for Embedded Linux on virtualized hardware so that Linux and at least one other operating system can run simultaneously on the same platform.

Virtualization for Embedded Linux is para-virtualized for optimal performance of Linux applications controlled by the LynxSecure embedded hypervisor and separation kernel.

The result of this optimization is that embedded-Linux applications in a LynxSecure virtualization configuration perform almost as robustly as if executing on a native, standalone Linux platform.

Thanks to high-assurance LynxSecure virtualization software and partition management, embedded-Linux applications can now be designed into higher-security systems than before.

Unclassified embedded-Linux applications executing in a LynxSecure secure virtualization partition are isolated and cannot compromise higher security standards that might be designed into other parts of the system.

New embedded-Linux design strategies

Virtualization for Embedded Linux invites reuse of existing Linux applications as discrete components of new systems.

Linux virtualization also facilitates creative design strategies such as assigning a partition to a Linux application, and allowing it to communicate via secure virtual networking with a real-time system (running a different OS) in a different partition (as if multiple hardware platforms were being used).

Communication between embedded-Linux partitions and other system components can be controlled by the security policies of the LynxSecure separation kernel's virtual networking function. All embedded-Linux applications in the system see the secure virtual network like an external network, even though the system applications all reside on the same processor in securely separated partitions.

Virtualization for Embedded Linux delivers the flexibility and cost benefits of open-source Linux software that have long been attractive to embedded-systems developers, but now with even greater possibilities.

In the Hospital Wireless Sensor Application Proof-of-Concept from Portwell, Virtualization for Embedded Linux allows Linux and Windows® XP to run simultaneously on a Portwell board, controlled by the LynxSecure embedded hypervisor.

Operating-system compatibility and flexibility

If it is later determined that stricter, hard real-time performance is needed for Linux applications, they can be migrated to a different secure partition and executed on the LynxOS® real-time operating system instead, also from LynuxWorks. Linux application code can run unmodified on LynxOS, which can protect you against high cost and time-to-market penalties when requirements evolve.

As early pioneers in the embedded-Linux movement and founding members of the former Embedded Linux Consortium, we're proud to lead the next wave of embedded Linux: Linux in virtualized systems. Embedded Linux is no longer just for standalone embedded systems.

A LynuxWorks embedded OS is featured in this LynxSecure embedded system application:
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LynxSecure advantages

  • Optimal security and safety—the only operating system designed to support both CC EAL-7 and DO-178B level A
  • Real time—time-space partitioned separation kernel for superior determinism and performance
  • Hypervisor and virtualization technology— supports multiple heterogeneous, both para-virtualized and fully virtualized, operating system environments on the same physical hardware including Intel® VT
  • Highly scalable—supports Symmetric MultiProcessing (SMP) and 64-bit addressing for high-end scalability
  • Support for open standards—100% binary compatibility for Linux- or POSIX-based software applications allows them to migrate to a highly robust, secure environment
  • Faster time to market—enables developers to begin early development for secure applications
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