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VOSySmonitorX86: a firmware based mixed criticality virtualization on x86

A real time operating system running securely with Linux on x86

Virtual Open Systems, a virtualization firmware company, mixed critical iot, automobile, edge systems

VOSySmonitorX86 is a firmware-based mixed criticality virtualization solution for x86 systems. It has been designed by Virtual Open Systems to address automotive, industrial and smart cities market segments. By extending system BIOS firmware, VOSySmonitorX86 enables spatial and temporal isolation between the safety critical operating system and Linux.

More in detail, VOSySmonitorX86 uses System Management Mode (SMM) execution level to run applications isolated from the memory and CPU viewpoints. In this way, the safety critical operating system is run protected by SMM, i.e., the most secure and protected execution environment in x86 systems. Moreover, by extending directly the systems BIOS, VOSySmonitorX86 brings the concept of certification up to the UEFI bios level.

VOSySmonitorX86: Linux and FreeRTOS running safely on x86

VOSySmonitorX86: Linux and FreeRTOS co-executes safely on x86 arch SoCs

The mixed critical virtualization solution used to enable safe Linux/FreeRTOS co-execution in this demonstration is VOSySmonitorX86, an adaptation of the arm and RISC-V based successful VOSySmonitor and VOSySmonitoRV company products.

The video showcases a typical mixed critical environment with Linux and an RTOS (Real Time OS) running concurrently on the same hardware (Minnowboard turbot equipped with an Intel Atom 3845 System-on-Chip). Key product features demonstrated are:

  • CPU Isolation. Linux cores workload are brought to the maximum, not affecting FreeRTOS operations
  • Freedom from interference. A Linux crash is triggered, not impacting FreeRTOS operations
  • Memory isolation. FreeRTOS memory is protected. A read to the FreeRTOS memory area returns garbage
Vosysmonitorx86, A Virtualization Mixed Critical Secure Firmware For X86 Soc VOSySmonitorX86, a virtualization firmware mixed critical execution environment demonstration running Linux and FreeRTOS on X86 arch