StarlingX, an open source platform for edge computing based on OpenStack, has reached version 6.0 with a Linux kernel upgrade as well as security and deployment enhancements to make systems easier to manage.
The StarlingX project offers a complete software stack for Edge and IoT deployments, with support for code running in containers or virtual machines. It was started by Intel and Wind River, but is now an independent project supported by the Open Infrastructure Foundation, with code available under the Apache 2 license.
Companies using StarlingX in production systems include T-Systems, Verizon and Vodafone, with code available for free download from the StarlingX website.
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One of the major updates in this release is the Linux kernel at the heart of the stack, with the StarlingX team stating that in light of previous CentOS announcements, the community has decided to switch to Debian. In practice, this meant an upgrade to kernel version 5.10, which also had the side effect of providing userspace with tools to configure routing and forwarding interfaces.
Another issue addressed is that of deployment and configuration. According to the StarlingX team, Edge use cases tend to vary widely in deployment configurations and users need to develop their infrastructure and then modify and scale it as needs change.
Starting with version 6.0, users can migrate their deployment to a duplex configuration that includes two controller nodes. This means that the process of moving from one subcloud deployment to another does not require a new installation.
The StarlingX community also strives to support disaster recovery scenarios. As part of this, users can now apparently move subclouds between distributed cloud systems while restoring the system controller.
Security is a key issue with edge deployments, and StarlingX 6.0 offers security certificate management through cert-manager, which simplifies the process of maintaining platform certificates, including automatic renewals. Administrators can also now update the Kubernetes root CA certificate on a running system by uploading or automatically generating a new one.
StarlingX even comes with monitoring and alerts to notify administrators of certificate expiration dates. In version 6.0, this extends to separate severity levels for certificates that are about to expire and those that have passed their expiration date.
Also new is support for auditd, the Linux auditing system, to help administrators track security breach events based on preconfigured audit rules.
Wind River provides a commercially supported version of StarlingX known as Wind River Studio for critical intelligent edge systems. In a statement, Wind River CTO Paul Miller said StarlingX 6.0 is another milestone that will advance cloud technologies for critical industries.
StarlingX is described as being suitable for a wide range of use cases and edge applications, from telecommunications to industrial IoT to retail. It supports ultra-low latency, extremely high service availability, and small footprint deployments.
Ildiko Vancsa of the Open Infrastructure Foundation, who serves as Senior Director of its Community & Ecosystem division, said of the post, “StarlingX already provides the essential functionality to build infrastructure from core to edge by providing a robust foundation , flexible and scalable with OpenStack which can be used to build your central cloud as well as installed at the edge to manage a smaller pool of resources.” ®