The number of edge applications and services is going to explode in the next five years, and the majority of these edge devices are going to use open-source platforms, with Linux being the leading open-source component. 5G, which is so much more than the next-generation wireless network, will have a profound impact on the growth of these new edge devices across many markets. It will facilitate Industry 4.0, smart cities, autonomous driving, and the yet-to-be imagined use cases enabled by AI and machine learning. Many of these devices will be far from homogeneous, though, due to the tremendous diversity that exists at the intelligent edge. That, in turn, will create a need for market specificity in terms of features, standards, and capabilities in order to address the requirements of a particular market…and it will inevitably lead to new market-grade Linux solutions.

So what constitutes a market-grade Linux solution? This paper explains the major considerations for such a solution, followed by sections that provide a detailed treatment of policy frameworks for securing these open-source variants and the hardening of a Linux operating system.