The Zephyr Project is an initiative to bring a real-time operating system to low-power IoT-connected devices and technologies. The platform is open-source and might be the buffer needed to address IoT security concerns. (images via Zephyr)
The Internet of Things (IoT) is here to stay. As devices continue to be upgraded for optimal internet connectivity, security has become an increasing concern – something The Zephyr Project hopes to change.
The Zephyr Project is an open-source initiative to bring a Real-Time Operating System (RTOS) to low-power, small memory footprint devices. The RTOS allows for the most efficient use of energy by keeping memory usage low and prioritizing task execution. As such, it may provide the level of protection needed to keep users protected from security threats once and for all.
The Zephyr kernel functions by separating the operational processes from the rest of the bare-bone OS; also called the microkernel, and nanokernel. The nanokernel is responsible for all essential operating tasks, including executing tasks through an internal fiber-based backlog. The microkernel is more powerful and allows for multitasking and memory storage, but is only used when necessary. In this way, the RTOS successfully creates a low-power operating system that is powerful, without all the energy guzzling. In fact, it only requires 10KB or less to operate.
The Zephyr kernel is based on modular memory and information processing. Similar to MIT’s new AI Chip, the RTOS schedules task execution cooperatively, and is based on performance-critical cue organization. The system can run on units as small as 8 kB up to 512 kB, and can run numerous system architectures simultaneously. Most importantly, it adds a layer of security otherwise unavailable for low-power footprint devices. This could curb the increasing trend of sacrificing user security for internet connectivity.
As-is the Zephyr kernel is projected to work seamlessly with Arduino 101 Arduino Duo Intel Galileo Gen 2 and the NXP Freedom board Because it is open-source developers are welcome to join the Zephyr Project community and customize the platform for their unique needs. Those interested in learning more about the project may visit the company website, or reach out to the lead developers.
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