Tag Archive for: Leon Anavi

Konsulko connects RDP with Wayland, Weston & Yocto at FOSDEM

Taking place February 4 & 5, 2023 in the beautiful city of Brussels (Belgium), FOSDEM is a two-day event organized by volunteers to promote the widespread use of free and open source software.

This year, Konsulko Group senior software engineer Leon Anavi will present Ups and Downs with Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) on Wayland, Weston and the Yocto Project.

Leon’s tutorial provides the exact steps to build-from-scratch core-image-weston, setup RDP and remotely access the embedded device using wlfreerdp (for Wayland) or xfreerdp (for X11) from a personal computer with Linux in the same network. Examples will be based on the kirkstone long-term support release of Yocto Project.

Leon will also discuss the advantages and the disadvantages of RDP as well as some troubleshooting guidelines.

If you are attending FOSDEM, be sure to to catch this lightning talk at the Embedded, Mobile and Automotive devroom on Saturday.

Konsulko Group: The Year in Review 2022

2022 went by quickly with Konsulko engineers working closely with our customers, our partners and the open source community. For the tenth straight year, Konsulko Group has helped our clients build outstanding commercial products with Embedded Linux, Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded, as well as deploying Over-the-Air (OTA) software updating.

Engaging with our customers

We had particular success with our Konsulko Continuous Time Engagement™ offering, providing dedicated engineering resources for two of the world’s largest semiconductor companies. This model provides guaranteed engineering time for an agreed period. KCTE has allowed our customers to use our engineers on a variety of their requirements, and switch between these tasks as the rest of their project and in-house engineering required.

Of course, many of our clients prefer Konsulko OnDemand Time Engagement™, SOW-based engineering for high level consulting, on-demand support, and specific tasks within a larger project. KOTE is also best for longer term engagements without a hard deadline that can be stopped and started as necessary, and projects with an expected pause (such as bring-up of new hardware which almost always results in a re-spin of the PCB).

Partnerships and Conferences

We continue our strong relationship with the Linux Foundation and Automotive Grade Linux. We worked with mender.io and PHYTEC, providing support and development for their customers. With our friends at ICS, we presented at a joint webinar in August, Software Update Mechanisms: Selecting the Best Solution by Konsulko’s Leon Anavi and ICS’ Jeff Tranter.

Our Konsulko engineers were active participants (often in person, sometimes virtually) in conferences and developer gatherings. Leon Anavi, Vitaly and Maria Wool, and Tim Orling made presentations at the Embedded Linux Conferences (North America and Europe), FOSDEM and Yocto Project Summits:

Tim also posted a technical paper on Using kernel config fragments to remove an unwanted feature.

Two top engineers join the Konsulko team

The bar is pretty high for joining Konsulko Group. Some of our team have thirty years experience with embedded software and Linux. Most have over twenty and all have over fifteen years, working (and playing) with Linux and the open source community. So we were happy to welcome Denys Dmytriyenko and António Oliveira to Konsulko Group this year.

Denys is a long time Open Source Software developer, contributing code to many FOSS projects, like glibc, PostgreSQL, KDE, MythTV, LIRC, OpenEmbedded, and Yocto Project. Before joining Konsulko Group, he worked as Software Developer and Architect for Texas Instruments for almost 20 years on numerous Embedded Linux (MIPS and ARM-based) products. Since 2011 Denys has served on the OpenEmbedded Board of Directors, and since 2019, on the Yocto Project Technical Steering Committee. He is a long time contributor and maintainer of numerous recipes and layers in the OpenEmbedded/Yocto Project universe.

António has worked in development of highly optimized hardware and software ranging from deeply embedded microcontrollers to full-fledged graphical user interfaces. During this time, he has gained extensive experience in build automation tools, analog and digital circuits, powerline communications, and low power and low frequency radio communications. An active member of the open source community, he has contributed to Yocto Project and the Linux kernel. In addition to his work as an embedded engineer, António served eight years on the executive board of his local parish in Portugal, including four years on the municipal council.

We hope you will have the opportunity to work with Denys, António and the rest of Konsulko Group in 2023.

Konsulko Group engineers to speak at ELC Seattle

Embedded Linux Conference, September 27- 30, 2021

Hyatt Regency Seattle | Seattle, Washington + Virtual

For over 15 years, Embedded Linux Conference (ELC) has been the premier, vendor-neutral technical conference for companies and developers using Linux in embedded products. Recent ELCs have expanded the scope to include both the user-space developers building applications on embedded Linux as well as the architects and developers working to deliver smart connected products and industrial IoT solutions.

At the upcoming Embedded Linux Conference, September 27- 30, 2021 at the Hyatt Regency Seattle (with a virtual option available), Konsulko Group engineers will give detailed technical talks on building RISC-V Linux systems, and Linux A/B upgrades.

Building a Low-key XIP-enabled RISC-V Linux System

Tuesday, September 28 • 4:00pm – 4:50pm

Principal Software Engineer (and GM Konsulko AB) Vitaly Vul (aka, Vitaly Wool) will discuss new hardware designs based on RISC-V, an open standard instruction set architecture. In modern times, RISC-V SoCs quite often have QSPI flash onboard which makes them perfect candidates to use XIP (eXecute In Place) technology to execute directly from flash without copying the code to RAM first. That allows to optimize memory footprint very tightly and thus opens up to really low-power IoT Linux appliances. Vitaly will present a demo how to run a mainline kernel configured for XIP on a RISC-V board, and discuss extending XIP support for RISC-V to 32-bit and MMU-less systems for low-key battery-powered RISC-V systems with RAM shortage.

Practical Experience with Linux A/B Upgrades

Wednesday, September 29 • 1:30pm – 2:20pm

Senior Software Engineer Leon Anavi will discuss deploying software upgrades to fleets of embedded Linux IoT devices, using A/B redundant systems with two identical partitions using popular open source solutions (like Mender or RAUC). Although they provide great features out of the box there are still plenty of technical obstacles to overcome for real-world use cases. In this presentation, we will walk through practical experiences using both Mender and RAUC with Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded. Leon will discuss BSP integration and porting efforts for new devices, bootloader requirements and configurations, tips and tricks for ARM and x86-64 systems, read-only file systems, partition layouts, storing persistent data during upgrades, managing single-file artifacts, simultaneous setup with Docker and other containers.

Join us in Seattle or virtually for this always informative, educational and fun conference for commercial and community embedded Linux developers.

Time to sign up for Virtual ELC Europe 2020

Join us at the Linux Foundation’s Embedded Linux Conference Europe, the premier vendor-neutral technical conference for embedded Linux developers, presented virtually on October 26–29, 2020.

Konsulko Group’s Leon Anavi will give a talk on Software Update Solutions for Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded, exploring the integration in Yocto and OpenEmbedded of A/B and binary delta updates over the air or through a USB stick.

No matter where you are in the world, here’s a good chance to experience ELC Europe for a fraction of the cost of the in-person event.

Getting Started with RAUC on Raspberry Pi

RAUC is a secure, robust and flexible open source software for A/B updates of Embedded Linux devices. It is appropriate for various use cases and it is compatible with all popular build systems: The Yocto Project/ OpenEmbedded, Buildroot and PTXdist.

Konsulko Group engineers have experience with all popular open source solutions for software over the air updates of embedded Linux devices, including Mender, SWUPdate, HERE OTA Connect based on OSTree and Aktualizr. In this article we will discuss the exact steps to integrate RAUC with the Yocto Project (YP) and OpenEmbedded (OE) for Raspberry Pi – the most popular single board computer among students, hobbyists and makers.

For the practical example in this article we will be using the latest and greatest Raspberry Pi as of the moment: Raspberry Pi 4 Model B. Versions with different RAM sizes are available on the market. Any of these Raspberry Pi 4 Model B versions are OK for this RAUC demonstration.

As long time developers and users of the Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded, both have become favorite tools for creating customized distributions for Konsulko engineers. We frequently use and support them commercially. The Yocto Project is a Linux Foundation collaborative open source project for creating custom Linux distributions for embedded devices. It is based on Poky, the reference distribution of the Yocto Project, using the OpenEmbedded build system. The Yocto Project releases on a 6-month cadence. As of the time of this writing, the latest stable release is Dunfell (3.1).

RAUC is a powerful and flexible open source solution that requires advanced skills for initial integration. To use RAUC in an image for Raspberry Pi built with the Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded, it requires:

  • U-Boot as a bootloader
  • Enabled SquashFS in the Linux kernel configurations
  • ext4 root file system
  • Specific partitioning of the microSD card that matches the RAUC slots
  • U-Boot environment configurations and a script to properly switch RAUC slots
  • Certificate and a keyring to RAUC’s system.conf

RAUC is capable of covering various use cases and scenarios, including advanced options for single or redundant data partitions. Upgrades are performed through the so called RAUC bundles. It is possible to install them over the air or using the old-fashioned method with a USB stick. For managing updates to a fleet of Internet of Things, it is possible to integrate RAUC with Eclipse hawkBit project that acts as a deployment server with a nice web user interface.

For the sake of simplicity, this article focuses on the most simple and straight-forward use case with 2 identical RAUC slots: A and B. For each slot we will have a separate partition on the microSD card for Raspberry Pi. We have already covered most of the RAUC requirements in an additional Yocto/OE layer called meta-rauc-raspberrypi. We will use it to put the pieces together. First we will build a minimal bootable image for Raspberry Pi 4 with RAUC. We will flash it to both A and B slots. After that we will build a RAUC bundle that adds the text editor nano. Finally we will install this RAUC bundle on the B slot, reboot and verify that nano is present.

Building a Linux Distribution with RAUC

Follow the steps below to build a minimal image for Raspberry Pi with Yocto, OpenEmbedded and RAUC as well as to perform a software update:

  • Download Poky, the reference distribution of the Yocto Project:

git clone -b dunfell git://git.yoctoproject.org/poky poky-rpi-rauc
cd poky-rpi-rauc

  • Download meta-openembedded layer:

git clone -b dunfell git://git.openembedded.org/meta-openembedded

  • Download Yocto/OE BSP layer meta-raspberrypi:

git clone -b dunfell git://git.yoctoproject.org/meta-raspberrypi

  • Download Yocto/OE layers for RAUC:

git clone -b dunfell https://github.com/rauc/meta-rauc.git

git clone -b dunfell https://github.com/leon-anavi/meta-rauc-community.git

  • Initialize the build environment:

source oe-init-build-env

  • Add layers to conf/bblayers.conf:

bitbake-layers add-layer ../meta-openembedded/meta-oe/
bitbake-layers add-layer ../meta-openembedded/meta-python/
bitbake-layers add-layer ../meta-openembedded/meta-networking/
bitbake-layers add-layer ../meta-openembedded/meta-multimedia/
bitbake-layers add-layer ../meta-raspberrypi/
bitbake-layers add-layer ../meta-rauc
bitbake-layers add-layer ../meta-rauc-community/meta-rauc-raspberrypi/

  • Adjust conf/local.conf for Raspberry Pi 4 with systemd and RAUC by adding the following configurations to the end of the file:
MACHINE = "raspberrypi4"

DISTRO_FEATURES_append = " systemd"
VIRTUAL-RUNTIME_init_manager = "systemd"
DISTRO_FEATURES_BACKFILL_CONSIDERED = "sysvinit"
VIRTUAL-RUNTIME_initscripts = ""

IMAGE_INSTALL_append = " rauc"

IMAGE_FSTYPES="tar.bz2 ext4 wic.bz2 wic.bmap"
SDIMG_ROOTFS_TYPE="ext4"
ENABLE_UART = "1"
RPI_USE_U_BOOT = "1"
PREFERRED_PROVIDER_virtual/bootloader = "u-boot"

WKS_FILE = "sdimage-dual-raspberrypi.wks.in"
  • Build a minimal bootable image:

bitbake core-image-minimal

NOTE: Building an image from scratch requires a lot of operations and takes some time so please patiently wait until bitbake completes all tasks.

  • Flash the image to a microSD card and boot it on Raspberry Pi 4:

sudo umount /dev/sdX*
bzcat tmp/deploy/images/raspberrypi4/core-image-minimal-raspberrypi4.wic.bz2 | sudo dd of=/dev/sdX
sync

  • Attach USB to UART debug cable to Raspberry Pi 4, plug ethernet cable and the microSD card. Turn on Raspberry Pi 4. Verify that the system boots successfully.
  • Now, let’s extend the image with the simple text editor nano by adding the following line to the end of conf/local.conf:

IMAGE_INSTALL_append = " nano"

  • Build a RAUC bundle:

bitbake update-bundle

  • Start a web server:

cd tmp/deploy/images/raspberrypi4/
python3 -m http.server

  • On the Raspberry Pi download the RAUC bundle, install it and reboot the board:

wget http://192.168.1.2:8000/update-bundle-raspberrypi4.raucb -P /tmp
rauc install /tmp/update-bundle-raspberrypi4.raucb
reboot

  • After successful upgrade with RAUC reboot the Raspberry Pi and verify that nano is now present:

which nano

  • Check RAUC status to confirm that now the second partition has been booted:

rauc status

For Internet of Things and other real-world products, the whole build procedure with the Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded can be optimized further to just a few commands for easy implementation of continuous integration (CI).

Konsulko engineers have been there since the earliest days of the OpenEmbedded build framework and the Yocto Project. We have experience with RAUC and various other open source solutions for software updates. Please contact us if you need your “own” rock-solid Linux distro for your own embedded product.

 

Helping Yocto Project work with Python 3

According to the statistics from StackOverflow Python is the fastest-growing major programming language. First released in 1991, Python is nowadays commonly used for various applications in multiple different industries. Python is a first class citizen of many embedded Linux systems.

The Yocto Project, a collaborative project of the Linux Foundation for creating custom Linux distributions for embedded devices, uses the OpenEmbedded build system and relies on layer meta-python from meta-openembedded to deliver Python 3 packages. Until recently, meta-python was providing both python 2 and python 3 versions of each package. The Python community decided that January 1, 2020, was the day to sunset Python 2. Since then Python 2 has been officially deprecated. This triggered major changes related to the support in Yocto and OpenEmbedded. All recipes for version 2 were moved to layer meta-python2 to provide legacy support after the end of life for this Python release. In meta-openembedded/meta-python, the OpenEmbedded community started efforts to remove all recipes for version 2 as well as to consolidate inc and bb files into a single bb file for version 3.

Konsulko Group engineers are regular contributors to various upstream open source projects, including meta-openembedded and more specifically to meta-python. In the past month, Leon Anavi joined the community efforts for consolidating Python 3 recipes in a single file as well as for upgrading various packages. Nowadays, most of the Python 3 recipes are utilizing the pypi bbclass which takes care for downloading and processing packages from pypi.org. This makes most of the upgrades to new releases of a Python package straight-forward. However, it is important to check the list of build and runtime dependencies as well as to ensure that bitbake still works fine with the upgraded recipe version for both x86-64 and ARM architectures prior to submission. 

Let’s have a closer look at the recipe python3-protobuf. It has been recently upgraded from version 3.11.3 to version 3.12.2. Protocol Buffers, also known as protobuf, are Google’s language-neutral, platform-neutral, extensible mechanism for serializing structured data. In the Yocto and OpenEmbedded ecosystem, recipe python3-protobuf depends on recipe protobuf from layer meta-oe. Both meta-oe and meta-python are part of meta-openembedded. So to avoid version mismatch and to ensure that bitbake will be able to successfully build python3-protobuf version 3.12.2 an upgrade of recipe protofobuf to the same version was mandatory. We contributed both upgrades to the master branch of the git repository meta-openembedded. The maintainers took care of cherry-picking them to the dunfell branch which is compatible with the latest stable release of the Yocto Project as of the moment. As a result, if you checkout the latest stable release of Poky, the reference system of the Yocto Project, and meta-openembedded you will be able to quickly build the latest version of protobuf and python3-protobuf out of the box.

Konsulko engineers have been there since the earliest days of the OpenEmbedded build framework and the Yocto Project. We continue to regularly make upstream contributions to these open source projects. Please contact us if you need your “own” Linux distro for your own embedded product.

Custom Linux Distro for NVIDIA CUDA Devices

How to get started and build a minimal custom Linux distribution for embedded NVIDIA CUDA-enabled devices using the Yocto Project (YP) and OpenEmbedded (OE).

Join us at FOSDEM

Please join us at FOSDEM, the annual free event for software developers to meet, share ideas and collaborate. Every year, thousands of developers of free and open source software from all over the world gather in Brussels.

If you are at the event on February 2, you may want to attend an informal, no-host dinner of embedded and automotive community developers. Be sure to register if you plan to go.

Leon Anavi, Konsulko Group senior software engineer will give two talks at FOSDEM:
Making Open Source Hardware for Retrogaming on Raspberry Pi in which he will explain how to use device tree overlay for a simple gamepad, and The Software Developer’s Guide to Open Source Hardware.

We hope to see you there.

See you at the AGL AMM (and at ELC Europe the week after)

This week, Konsulko Group is coming to Dresden, Germany to the Automotive Grade Linux All Member Meeting. Matt Ranostay will present State of Connectivity in AGL, an overview and roadmap of bindings and binding APIs in the current and upcoming release of AGL. Scott Murray will speak on the developer panel.

Next week, Konsulko engineers will travel to Edinburgh, UK to give four technical sessions at co-located Linux Foundation events.
* At the OpenIoT Summit, Leon Anavi will speak about Open Source MQTT Brokers, a lightweight publish/subscribe machine-to-machine protocol with a reliable bi-directional communication in (near) real-time, and at Embedded Linux Conference Europe, Comparison of Voice Assistant SDKs for Embedded Linux Devices, including Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa as well as an open source alternative, Mycroft.
* At ELC Europe, Scott Murray will explore Building Container Images with OpenEmbedded and the Yocto Project, discussing container size, reproducibility, security vulnerability fixing, and license compliance.
* As part of special Embedded & IoT Apprentice Engineer Tracks (additional track registration required), Konsulko Group CTO Matt Porter will present Introduction to IIO and Input Drivers.

We hope to see you in Dresden or Edinburgh, or both.

Konsulko Group presents four technical sessions in Edinburgh

Embedded Linux Conference (ELC) is the premier vendor-neutral technical conference for companies and developers using Linux in embedded products. For the past 13 years, ELC has had the largest collection of sessions dedicated ​exclusively to embedded Linux and embedded Linux developers.

Co-located with both the Open Source Summit Europe, the leading conference for developers, architects, the open source community and industry leaders to collaborate and share information, and OpenIoT Summit, the only Internet of Things (IoT) event focused on the development of open IoT solutions, ELC Europe will be held in Edinburgh, UK, October 22-24, 2018.

Registration for one of the three co-located conferences allows you to attend the other two as well.

Konsulko engineers will present four technical sessions:

Leon Anavi will give two presentations –
* at the OpenIoT Summit, Open Source MQTT Brokers, a lightweight publish/subscribe machine-to-machine protocol with a reliable bi-directional communication in (near) real-time, and
* at ELC Europe, Comparison of Voice Assistant SDKs for Embedded Linux Devices, including Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa as well as an open source alternative, Mycroft.

At ELC Europe, Scott Murray will explore Building Container Images with OpenEmbedded and the Yocto Project, discussing container size, reproducibility, security vulnerability fixing, and license compliance.

As part of special Embedded & IoT Apprentice Engineer Tracks (additional track registration required), Konsulko Group CTO Matt Porter will present Introduction to IIO and Input Drivers.

We hope you are able to attend. We’ll see you in Edinburgh in October.

Tag Archive for: Leon Anavi