Linux is a family of open-source Unix-like operating systems based on the Linux kernel, an operating system kernel first released on September 17, 1991, by Linus Torvalds. Linux is typically packaged in a distribution that includes the kernel and supporting system software and libraries, many of which are provided by the GNU Project. Many Linux distributions have been created, such as Ubuntu, Debian, and CentOS. It is estimated that 96.3% of the world’s top 1 million servers run on Linux and 90% of all cloud infrastructure operates on Linux and practically all the best cloud hosts use it. GNU/Linux is also widely used in embedded systems such as cellphones, TVs, set-top boxes, car consoles, smart home devices, industrial control equipment, and more. Linux is increasingly becoming more popular for commercial embedded industrial applications. Several key advantages make Linux a worthwhile investment for an embedded development project: Robustness, Scalability, Widespread acceptance, Low cost, Easy customization, and Ready support.
To accelerate developments and reduce costs and time-to-market, a custom embedded GNU/Linux distribution called GYDA has been developed, that natively provides, applying secure-by design principles, a given set of security capabilities to fulfil SL 1 requirements established by the IEC 62443-4-2 standard. GYDA aims to build composite products from this pre-evaluated SW component to be used as a reusable block. This composition enables the reuse of assurance evidence and, consequently, reduces the amount of work to be done for the certification of the composite product. For its implementation and composition, the Yocto Project is used. The Yocto Project splits large software modules into layers. Hardware manufacturers typically provide a BSP layer for their products, complete with drivers and kernel configuration. The embedded specialist then adds a custom layer that inherits the hardware layer, adding and removing components to fit the end product. The GYDA layer will provide security capabilities and technical measures. Figure 1 shows the reusability concept of GYDA.
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