Airbotics
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Supporting technologies

Airbotics is built on several mature, well-tested, open-source technologies enabling us to provide secure and stable updates.

Uptane

Uptane is an extension of The Update Framework (TUF) designed for securing software update systems in the automotive industry. It was initially developed by a consortium of industry, academic and goverment agencies under a grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Popular Science named Uptane one of the Top Security Inventions of 2017, and since 2019 is has been formally affiliated with the Linux Foundation as a Joint Development Foundation project.
Uptane is integrated into Automotive Grade Linux is used by about 1/3 of new cars on US roads [1]. TUF is used to secure millions of system and has been adopted by Docker Content Trust, PyPI, Datadog, and many others.
Building on this framework allows us to ensure your robots are receiving updates securely.

OSTree

OSTree is an upgrade system for Linux-based operating systems that performs incremental atomic upgrades of complete bootable filesystem trees.
It has severals benefits:
  • Unlike dual-bank (i.e. A/B partitioning) update strategies, you don't need to overspec storage.
  • It downloads deltas between versions, saving bandwidth.
  • It can store n versions.
  • Updates are fully atomic and safe to power failures.
OSTree is used in Flatpak and several Fedora derivatives.

Aktualizr

Aktualizr is an open-source C++ implementation of an Uptane client with integrations for OSTree. It was originally developed by ATS Advanced Telematic Systems and is used as the foundation for several commercially available implementations of Uptane. It is used in the meta-updater Yocto layer allowing for OTA updates of Yocto-built OSTree-complaint images.
The Airbotics client is built around libaktualizr with extensions for ROS and other communication protocols.

Yocto

Yocto (or The Yocto Project) is an open-source collection of tools for building custom Linux-based distributions. It supports a wide array of architectures and platforms and software technologies such as ROS, Zephyr, FreeRTOS, Automotive Grade Linux, and tonnes more. It has been a Linux Foundation project since 2010.
It allows for fine-grain customisation of systems but has a steep learning curve, for this reason we provide a reference distribution to get started.