When developing embedded products, creating a custom Linux operating system can be a daunting task. The challenge is choosing a single starting point: a multitude of Linux distributions are available to developers and users, but finding a standardized position from which to build is difficult. Enter the Yocto Project, a collaborative effort between the Linux Foundation and independent developers to gather standardized templates, tools, and methods for creating custom Linux systems. This paper gives an introduction to the Yocto Project’s utility when creating your own Linux-based systems and offers a specific exercise to walk readers through development system setup using Yocto Project 1.3.