The concept designs are a set of technical documents covering many aspects of the project, written through the history of the project, taking into account the status of the project at that time. These documents cover topics that have been researched but not necessarily implemented in Apertis at the time of writing.

Information in these documents may be outdated, but nonetheless provide important context for the decision making process and overall vision of the project.

Moving to Gitlab issues

Apertis is an Open Source project which has been growing sustainable during the past years. This growth also made it spread across different projects and teams, requiring Apertis to improve the tools it uses. In this regard, one issue that prevents Apertis to be really open is the fact that the bug tracking system is only open to maintainers making it hard for the community to report new bugs or to keep track of them. [Read More]

Export controls

Apertis targets a global community developing global products, and this necessarily makes it interact with the legislation regulating the export of goods, software and technology. In particular, Apertis can be used on products that fall under the “dual-use” categorization since they can be used for both civilian and military applications. In the context of export controls, it is important to highlight that compliance is a property of a specific product as a whole, and that Apertis being compliant does not automatically translate to products built with Apertis to be compliant. [Read More]

On-screen keyboard

Apertis can be used with a touchscreen only, in this case the user will need an on-screen keyboard to be able to enter information like passwords, URLs, messages. This document outlines the current state of the Wayland protocols dealing with input methods, their implementation status as well as a possible approach for integrating this support into Apertis. Terminology and concepts In Wayland, multiple protocols are involved to allow users to enter text. [Read More]

Lifetime of documents

Apertis is an already mature distribution which fully supports the development of systems for embedded devices as well as a whole infrastructure to make that possible. During its evolution changes are necessary and updating documentation is a key point to making it user friendly. With the goal of having documentation that really expresses the current state of the distribution, having a process and procedure to manage the lifetime of documents is crucial since each new release introduces changes than can lead to documentation to become outdated. [Read More]

GPL-3 Deltas Assessment

Apertis the distribution is derived from Debian, from which it takes its philosophy, tools, workflows and packages. This robust, friendly and mature distribution provides a solid base on which to build an offering to suite the needs of very demanding markets such as the automotive industry. One big difference between Apertis and Debian is that Apertis avoids certain licenses, in order to allow its target market to avoid legal issues. Several licenses are considered unsuitable in parts of Apertis, GPL-3 being the most important one. [Read More]

Apertis Platform Technical Vision

Overview The intention of this document is to outline the Apertis technical direction and vision for the Apertis platform as it would be used on a device, container or VM. This document does not cover the overall Apertis infrastructure and its general principles around for example open source license expectations, image building and the release process. These topics are covered in their own respective documents. Apertis is, by design, a very flexible platform to build on. [Read More]

Status Page Review

Introduction As interest and use of Apertis grows it is becoming increasingly important to show the health of the Apertis infrastructure. This enables users to proactively discover the health of the resources provided by Apertis and determine if any issues they may be having are due to Apertis or their infrastructure. Terminology and concepts Hosted: Service provided by an external provider that can typically be accessed over the internet. Self-hosted: Service installed and run from computing resources directly owned by the user. [Read More]

GPL-3-free replacements of GnuPG

Introduction In accordance to its Open Source License Expectations, Apertis currently ships a very old version of GnuPG which is still released under the GPL-2.0 terms, before the upstream project switched to GPL-3.0. This is problematic in the long term: the purpose of this document is to investigate alternative implementations with licensing conditions that are suitable for Apertis target devices. The use cases for Apertis target images only depend on GnuPG for verification purposes, not for signing or encrypting. [Read More]

Preparing hawkBit for Production Use

Introduction The Apertis project has been experimenting with the use of Eclipse hawkBit as a mechanism for the deployment of system updates and applications to target devices in the field. The current emphasis is being placed on system updates, though hawkBit can also be used to address different software distribution use cases such as to distribute system software, updates and even apps from an app store. Apertis has recently deployed a hawkBit instance into which the image build pipelines are uploading builds. [Read More]

GPL-3-free replacements of coreutils

Due to the nature of Apertis and its target markets there are licensing terms that are problematic and that forces the project to look for alternatives packages. The coreutils package is good example of this situation as its license changed to GPLv3 and as result Apertis cannot provide it in the target repositories and images. The current solution of shipping an old version which precedes the license change is not tenable in the long term, as there are no upgrades with bugfixes or new features for such important package. [Read More]