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Susan Remmert

What it takes to employ Linux in safety applications : An interview with Shuah Khan

By Blog, Industry Conference, Mentorship

During the Open Source Summit Europe 2022, Shuah Khan, Linux Kernel Fellow at the Linux Foundation and previously the Chair of the ELISA Project Technical Steering Committee, met with Mike Vizard, Chief Content Officer, Techstrong TV, to discuss what it takes to employ Linux in safety applications and why the open source community is still looking to train top-notch maintainers.

This interview narrates the fundamental details that you need to know if you are new to ELISA Project and planning to contribute or get involved in the LF Project or any open source projects under Linux Foundation. The theme of the questions spanned from the need of safety programs and how Linux is involved in safety critical applications to how gender diversity and STEM education plays a role in the open source community and contribution.

ELISA Project as you know is simply defined as Enabling Linux In Safety Applications. Shuah Khan explains how ELISA is involved in many uses like automotive, medical etc and how the community is bringing together the safety experts to maintain safety critical platforms. She also explains with an example on how the project works in an automotive use case. When it comes to safety certification, she explains how ELISA Project is helping with the resources for the community that are planning to certify their safety critical platforms running in Linux. The role of safety experts and the kernel experts are like bread and butter. While safety experts look at the safety angle of the product or platform, kernel experts bridge the gap between safety and kernel.

There are sometimes concerns in people’s minds that in the future the regulators might be asking tough questions about safety when they develop medical, automotive applications. There are also lots of costs involved for these certifications. Considering the economical situation now, how the ELISA project can help the community is worthwhile.

For those who are currently studying or looking to get involved in the ELISA Project to learn more about Kernel and safety certification process, starting from this part (06:00) of the interview is a must watch.

This part explains about the talent ELISA Project is looking for, how LFX mentorship program helps the newcomers to integrate into the open source community, to help the code in and make them an expert in their preferred field.

In many cases, some are often uninformed about the possibilities of learning or don’t know where to start with the open source contribution. What we want to convey is our project has structural programs, resources to work and kernel webinars to learn. At the end of the program, there is also a virtual mentee showcase where the mentees explain about what they have done during the program to the member company representatives which is a potential opportunity for further steps like job or research programs.

The interview also discusses the outreach programs to attract talents from various parts of the world and the STEM initiatives.

We invite you to watch this video to learn more and if it helped you to learn something new, then share it with your communities: https://techstrong.tv/videos/open-source-summit-europe-2022/shuah-khan-the-linux-foundation-open-source-summit-europe-2022.

Learn more about the ELISA Project here

ELISA Summit: Trusted Execution Inside Secure Enclaves (Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today, we focus on a session presented by Işıl Öz, Assistant Professor, Izmir Institute of Technology and Elana Copperman, System Architect, Mobileye. They gives an overview on the topic Trusted Execution Inside Secure Enclaves“.

Trusted Execution Environments (TEE), which are hardware-implemented encryption technologies, ensure that applications work in an encrypted and secure way by protecting them from the operating system or other programs. While the sensitive data and code are stored inside private regions of enclave memory, unauthorized entities cannot modify them.

In this talk, the speakers will share basics about enclave memories and their usage scenarios. They will talk about open-source projects on Intel SGX technology and our experience in our ELISA mentorship program. In addition to that, the topics also include the safety issues with security aspects and mention about the impact of secure enclave implementations for safety-critical systems.

Watch the video below or check out the presentation materials here.

For more details about the ELISA Project, visit the main website here.

ELISA Summit: Analysis of eBPF for Safety Use Case (Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit, Mentorship

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today, we focus on a session presented by Elana Copperman, Mobileye & Jules Irenge, Linux Foundation Mentee. They will be sharing their insights on the topic “eBPF for safety use cases”

Jules shares his experience of working as part of the LXF/ELISA Mentorship Program. The program is focused on ebpf and xdp.

On one hand, eBPF is a kernel mechanism that provides a sandboxed runtime environment in the Linux kernel without changing kernel source code or loading kernel modules.

eBPF programs can be attached to various kernel subsystems, including networking, tracing and Linux security modules (LSM).

On the other, eXpress Data Path (xdp) is a technology that enables high performance data communication, bypassing most of the operating system networking stack using eBPF.

Elana shares an analysis of eBPF for safety, focusing on xdp, and demonstrate how these can be used for safety.

In the process she showcase eBPF /xdp tools that do and count how many packets have been accepted, rejected or redirected and how this can be used for tracing.

The goal of this presentation is to guide system administrators and programmers to consider using this technology to improve on software safety.

To learn more, watch the video below.

For more details about the ELISA Project, visit the main website here.

ELISA Seminar: PREEMPT_RT – How not to break it (Video)

By Blog, Seminar Series

In March, the ELISA Project launched the Monthly Seminar Series, which focuses on hot topics related to ELISA and its mission. Presenters are members, contributors and thought leaders from the ELISA Project and surrounding communities. You can find all of the seminar videos here.

In October, Sebastian Siewior from Linutronix presented a seminar titled,  PREEMPT_RT – how not to break it.

The PREEMPT_RT patch set has only a handful patches left until it can be enabled on the X86 Architecture at the time of writing. The work has not finished once the patches are fully merged. A new issue is how to not break parts of PREEMPT_RT in future development by making assumption which are not compatible or lead to large latencies. Another problem is how to address limitations on PREEMPT_RT like the big softirq/ bottom halves lock which can lead to high latencies.

A short background of the RTL Collaborative Project: The Real Time Linux collaborative project was established to help coordinate the efforts around mainlining Preempt RT and ensuring that the maintainers have the ability to continue development work, long-term support and future research of RT. In coordination with the broader community, the workgroup aims to encourage broader adoption of RT, improve testing automation and documentation and better prioritize the development roadmap.

Would like to know more on how it’s all started? You can find more details here: https://wiki.linuxfoundation.org/realtime/rtl/start.

Watch the full video here:

Materials from the seminar can be found here.

Learn more about ELISA Project.

ELISA Summit : Using memory access error detection (Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today, we focus on a session presented by Priyanka Verma, Senior Software Quality Engineer, Red Hat GmbH and Dennis Brendel, Senior Software Quality Engineer, Red Hat on the topic “Using memory access error detection for safety argumentation”

Kernel Electric-Fence (KFENCE) and Kernel Address Sanitizer (KASAN) are memory safety error detectors with support in the Linux kernel. This presentation explores how well KASAN and KFENCE detect different types of memory access errors with various configuration settings to assess the suitability of these memory access sanitizers to develop safety argumentation.

Watch the video below or check out the presentation materials here.

For more details about the ELISA Project, visit the main website here.

ELISA Summit : AUTOSAR Adaptive Applications in Rust (Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today, we focus on a session presented by Christof Petig, Advanced Software Developer, Aptiv Services Deutschland GmbH and Huzaifa Saadat, Head of Center of Excellence AUTOSAR, Alten GmbH on the topic “AUTOSAR Adaptive Applications in Rust”. The talk mainly focuses on the introduction to AUTOSAR adaptive, benefits of Rust wrt FuSa, presenting specific techniques for Rust C++ interaction within AUTOSAR adaptive, outlook towards Rust for AUTOSAR classic.

Watch the video below or check out the presentation materials here.

For more details about the ELISA Project, visit the main website here.

ELISA Summit: Medical Devices Working Group Update (Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit, Working Group

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today, we focus on a session presented by the team members from ELISA Medical Device Working Group: Jason Smith, Jeffrey (Jefro) Osier-Mixon, Kate Stewart, Milan Lakhani,Nicole Pappler, Shefali Sharma, Shuah Khan on the topic of Medical Device Working Group update.

The main goal of this working group is to develop best practices to analyze systems and identify the components of Linux that will be participating in safety analysis, in the context of medical device safety standards. The main activities include 

  • Analysis of open source medical device application (openAPS)
  • Create documentation of results of STPA analysis (system, requirements, architecture, design, …)
  • Comparison of results of STPA analysis to 62304 Software of Unknown Provenance (SOUP)
  • Create documentation on usage of tooling to support kernel analysis 

In this session, the team shares progress to date, as well as some of the lessons learned and areas where they could use some help. The deliverables being worked on for the next quarter will be previewed as well.

Watch the video below or check out the presentation materials here.

For more details about the ELISA Project, visit the main website here. To learn more about the Medical Device Working Group or to join the community, click here.

ELISA Summit: Kernel Tracing (Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit, Working Group

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today, we focus on a session presented by Shefali Sharma, Senior year CSE Student, India and LFX Mentee at ELISA Medical Devices WG on the topic “Kernel Tracing.” In this video, Shefali presents the work she did during her ELISA Mentorship Program including:

  • Understanding system resources necessary to build and run a workload is important.
  • The highlights of theLinux tracing and strace can be used to discover the system resources in use by a workload. 
  • The completeness of the system usage information depends on the completeness of coverage of a workload.
  • Performance and security of the operating system can be analyzed with the help of tools like ftrace, perf, stress-ng, paxtest.
  • Once we discover and understand the workload needs, we can focus on them to avoid regressions and use it to evaluate safety considerations.

In addition to these topics, she also explains about her mentorship experience with ELISA Medical Working Group.  Watch the video below or check out the presentation materials here.

If you’re interested in becoming a ELISA Project or Linux Foundation mentee, you can review mentorships and all here: https://lfx.linuxfoundation.org/tools/mentorship/.

ELISA Summit: Generation of Static Architecture Diagrams for Specific Kernel Images (Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit, Working Group

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today, we focus on a session presented by Alessandro Carminati, Red Hat and Maurizio Papini, Red Hat on the topic Generation of Static Architecture Diagrams for Specific Kernel Images.”

In this talk, the experts shared how they generated a static architecture diagram of the Kernel based on radare2. To analyze the kernel for safety is challenging since it is a huge monolithic piece of code. Subsystems exist within the kernel, but they are not well defined nor documented. ISO26262 part6 requires a ‘Software architectural design specification’ that can be used to support safety analysis and drive the function of tests.

Watch the video below or check out the presentation materials here.

ELISA Summit: Automotive Working Group Update – Tell-tales an Evolution Use Case Towards Driver Assistance ?!(Video)

By Blog, ELISA Summit, Working Group

An estimated 185 people registered for the ELISA Summit, which took place virtually on September 7-8 to gather Linux community members and attendees from around the world. The event, which featured 15 sessions and 20 speakers, was open to anyone involved or interested in defining, using, or learning about common elements, processes, and tools that can be incorporated into Linux-based, safety-critical systems amenable to safety certification. Members of the ELISA Project community presented best practices and overviews on emerging trends and hot topics to using open source software in safety-critical applications and detailed working group updates.

We’ll be featuring event videos in blogs each week. Today we’ll feature the session by Philipp Ahmann, Robert Bosch GmbH supported by work from Paul Albertella, Codethink, and Christopher Temple, Arm on the topic Automotive Working Group Update – Tell tales an evolution use case towards driver assistance.

The session mainly covered the topics such as what is a tell tale and why is it the use case of the Automotive WG? What is STPA and advantages of it. This session gave an update on the latest activities of the Automotive Working Group status. Focus was put on the explanation why the Automotive Working Group has selected the use case of “safe displaying of warning signs on instrument cockpit” also called “telltales”. The benefits of the use case is illustrated as well. The relationship to other use cases is provided and the natural evolution to other automotive use cases like driver assistance features is shown.

Watch the video below or check out the presentation materials here.

To learn more about the Automotive Working Group or to join the mailing list or meetings, click here.