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This new Ubuntu release will help secure IoT devices

smart home
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Canonical, the developers of the Ubuntu desktop Linux distro, have announced a containerized version of the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS release designed especially for use on embedded and IoT devices.

According to Canonical, Ubuntu Core already powers "tens of thousands of industrial and consumer IoT devices run Ubuntu Core, brought to market by Bosch Rexroth, Dell, ABB, Rigado, Plus One Robotics, Jabil, and more."  

The company describes the new Ubuntu Core 20 as a major release, with special emphasis on its security enhancements. “Ubuntu Core 20 enables innovators to create highly secure things and focus entirely on their own unique features and apps, with confinement and security updates built into the operating system,” remarked Canonical’s CEO and founder Mark Shuttleworth.

Secure to the core

Along with the regular slew of updates and improvements, Ubuntu Core 20 debuts new security features such as secure boot, full disk encryption, and secure device recovery. Canonical also notes that the new release is available and certified for both x86 and ARM single board computers. 

"As apps move to the edge, the value of data in remote locations increases. Ubuntu Core 20 adds secure boot with hardware-backed full disk encryption to guarantee confidentiality from physical attackers," said Ubuntu Core project manager Galem Kayo.

Apps in Ubuntu Core are available as snaps, which is an all-in-one packaging format designed to simplify installing apps in Linux. While snaps are ideal for devices on the edge, their use in the project’s traditional non-Ubuntu Core ecosystem has evoked mixed response.

Canonical will host a free webinar on February 24 to discuss the release in more detail.

Mayank Sharma

With almost two decades of writing and reporting on Linux, Mayank Sharma would like everyone to think he’s TechRadar Pro’s expert on the topic. Of course, he’s just as interested in other computing topics, particularly cybersecurity, cloud, containers, and coding.