What goes into creating a high-quality Operating System?

Imagine a small team working on an embedded device – it could be a simple light bulb, a security alarm, a set top box or an internet gateway. Their mission is to ship their application on this device. Typically, this team juggles their time between implementing their core application with bringing up a BSP, cobbling together an OTA solution to allow future updates, managing their CI pipeline and “implementing security”.

Unfortunately, many engineering teams rarely have enough time, capacity or expertise to think about the nuances of security policy (for kernel, toolchain, networking, CVEs), trusted boot and key management, update policy, product hardening and IP compliance. They end up doing the bare minimum to ship a product. We’re not even talking about maintenance yet – very few companies budget for multi-year maintenance of the device software.

Governments are starting to pay attention as thousands of such devices are connected to the internet – inside the home as well as in critical industrial and utility infrastrastructure.

This talk focuses on what goes into creating a high-quality embedded operating system that companies can adopt to build high-quality secure products on top of. Using opinionated defaults to reduce decision fatigue while keeping the operating system secure out-of-the-box is one of the key goals of the Eclipse Oniro. You will hear about the steps already taken to build such a system, what we want to work on in the next 18 months and how you can help.