Apertis is a Debian derivative distribution geared towards the creation of product-specific images for ARM (both the 32bit ARMv7 and 64-bit ARMv8 versions using the hardfloat ABI) and Intel x86-64 (64-bit) systems.

Apertis v2022pre is the preview release of the Apertis v2022 stable release flow that will lead to the LTS Apertis v2022.0 release in March 2022.

This Apertis release is based on Debian Bullseye. It currently ships with the Linux kernel 5.15.x LTS series but later releases in the v2022 channel will track newer kernel versions up to the next LTS scheduled at the end of 2021.

Test results for the v2022pre release are available in the following test reports:

Release flow

  • 2020 Q4: v2022dev0
  • 2021 Q1: v2022dev1
  • 2021 Q2: v2022dev2
  • 2021 Q3: v2022dev3
  • 2021 Q4: v2022pre
  • 2022 Q1: v2022.0
  • 2022 Q2: v2022.1
  • 2022 Q3: v2022.2
  • 2022 Q4: v2022.3
  • 2023 Q1: v2022.4
  • 2023 Q2: v2022.5
  • 2023 Q3: v2022.6
  • 2023 Q4: v2022.7

Release downloads

Apertis v2022dev3 images
Intel 64-bit fixedfunction hmi base SDK SDK
ARM 32-bit (U-Boot) fixedfunction hmi
ARM 64-bit (U-Boot) fixedfunction
ARM 64-bit (Raspberry Pi) fixedfunction hmi

The Intel fixedfunction and hmi images are tested on the reference hardware (MinnowBoard Turbot Dual-Core), but they can run on any UEFI-based x86-64 system. The sdk image is tested under VirtualBox.

Apertis v2022pre repositories

deb https://repositories.apertis.org/apertis/ v2022pre target development sdk

New features

Updates from Debian Bullseye

This release is the second one based on Debian Bullseye, bringing plenty of upstream updates and fixes.

The reference Flatpak Runtime for Apertis

Starting from the Apertis demo introduced in the v2022dev2 release, the runtime has been refined and polished to provide the reference org.apertis runtime that application authors can use to distribute their Apertis-based applications on top of any Flatpak-supporting system.

Two variants are provided:

  • org.apertis.headless.Platform and org.apertis.headless.Sdk: A basic runtime with some common libraries that headless applications may use.
  • org.apertis.hmi.Platform and org.apertis.hmi.Sdk: A larger runtime for graphical applications, based on the headless one.

The “Creating Flatpak Runtimes and Applications guide covers in detail how the runtimes are built, how custom runtimes can be created and extended and how to build applications using them.

Apply and enforce Ed25519 signatures for Apertis Flatpak packages and runtimes

After the introduction of Ed25519 signatures in OSTree in the v2020dev0 release, Apertis has now extended the support of Ed25519 signatures to Flatpak.

This adds a modern signature mechanism that is compliant with the Apertis Licensing Expectations to ensure that all the Apertis Flatpak applications and runtimes deployed on a system come from a trusted source.

Audio policy to mute song app when switching to video app

Improvements in Wireplumber now allows system integrator and developer to support additional use cases, such as mute audio from a song application when switching to a video application.

A demonstrative policy is now bundled in the Apertis images, providing a starting point for teams interested in defining how their products should manage their audio streams.

Improved license compliance checks

The introduction of the license checks and reporting in the v2022dev1 release did start the effort to ensure that all packages in the target component had the appropriate source licensing metadata.

With the steady progress over the quarters thanks to the patient and accurate work of the Apertis maintainers in reviewing the many inconsistencies identified, this effort now comes to completion, significantly improving the quality of the bill-of-materials produced by the image building pipelines.

Improved availability of packaging tools for developers

The scrips and tools used by developers when performing packaging activities have been reorganized and are now shipped as part of the SDK, improving the development experience.

BSH SMM S2 PRO board support

Designed by BSH, the SystemMaster S2 Pro is an add-on board which provides input and output interfaces to a dedicated carrier board. Apertis users can now run a headless system using the fixedfunction image, which includes hardware support for wifi, bluetooth and audio. Check the setup notes for more info.

Build and integration

Scalable monitoring of LAVA jobs from GitLab pipelines

Apertis relies heavily on LAVA to continuously test our deployable artifacts. Every night hundreds of LAVA jobs get submitted to the devices in our LAVA farm from the daily image building pipelines; until now, the submission was done with a fire-and-forget approach since the standard GitLab runners do not cope efficiently with monitoring jobs managed by a downstream scheduler like LAVA.

The introduction of a custom GitLab runner dedicated to monitoring LAVA jobs enables the image building pipelines to keep track of all the submitted jobs efficiently.

Developers can now see the results for each jobs and retrieve the logs directly in the same GitLab pipeline that submitted them, helping them to keep track of the impact of their changes in a close feedback loop.

Upstream Linux LTS version tracking from the packaging dashboard

The Apertis dashboard is the tool that the project uses to stay up-to-date with its upstream distribution, Debian.

This works well for the near totality of our packages, with the Linux kernel being the major exception: accordingly to the Apertis release flow for each new stable release we track the latest upstream LTS version, which means that we are rarely in-sync with the version shipped in Debian.

The dashboard is now able to find available updates directly from upstream in those cases, helping the Apertis maintainer to ensure we always ship the most up-to-date fixes to our users.

Tracking consumption of APT snapshots for long-term reproducibility

The approach Apertis took for Long-Term Reproducibility involves frequent snapshots of the APT repositories.

While snapshots themselves are rather cheap thanks to the design of the APT repository format, their accumulation over time quickly becomes a substantial cost.

The Apertis dashboard has now a dedicated section to track the storage consumption of the snapshots over time, to give maintainer visibility on which releases are consuming the most space, which snapshots carry the most weight and how much space can be reclaimed by their deletion.

Raspberry Pi images tested on LAVA

The Apertis images for Rasberry Pi are now included in the tests run on LAVA paving the way to the official suport of this board.

Documentation and designs

Export control

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.

The Export controls concept document tries to address the requirements and challenges that teams targeting global markets will face, providing a high level overview of the tools and workflows that Apertis can provide to make such compliance processes easier for them.

Virtual keyboard

The Apertis team has surveyed the On-Screen Virtual Keyboard state-of-the-art in the Wayland ecosystem to evaluate the viable options.

Due to licensing challenges and the in-flux state of the specifications no immediate winner emerged from the evaluation, but a strategy has been defined to address this need in the near future.

Deprecations and ABI/API breaks


No known regressions.


No known deprecations


No known breaking changes are part of this release.


Apertis Docker images

The Apertis Docker images provide a unified and easily reproducible build environment for developers and services.

As of today, this includes the apertis-base, apertis-image-builder, apertis-package-source-builder, apertis-flatdeb-builder, apertis-documentation-builder, and apertis-testcases-builder, Docker images.

Apertis infrastructure tools

The Apertis v2022 infrastructure repository provides packages for the required versions of ostree-push and ostree for Debian Buster:

deb https://repositories.apertis.org/infrastructure-v2022/ buster infrastructure


Image daily builds, as well as release builds can be found at https://images.apertis.org/

Image build tools can be found in the Apertis tools repositories.

Infrastructure overview

The Apertis Image Recipes provides an overview of the image building process and the involved services.

Known issues

High (22)

  • T7879 sdk-debos-image-building: test failed
  • T7984 Rhosydd test shows status as incomplete on v2021 images
  • T8009 Flatpak: sdk-flatpak-build-helloworld-app test fails on v2022dev2 sdk / base sdk
  • T8076 ade-commands: test failed
  • T8132 sdk-flatpak-demo: test failed
  • T8179 ADE: root:Project is not configured : error when executing sdk-ade-remote-debugging test on v2022dev3 SDK/Base SDK
  • T8288 HMI Videos app closing automatically on armhf v2022 images
  • T8360 Arm64 hmi ostree image not available for offline system-update tests on v2022
  • T8363 Videos are not loaded in Videos app of SDK/target of v2022pre
  • T8364 aum-ota-rollback-blacklist: test failed
  • T8382 Connman and other tests show as incomplete on v2020 for ARM
  • T8399 aum-offline-upgrade-branch: test failed
  • T8409 aum-rollback-blacklist: test failed
  • T8434 Switch between different graphical applications doesn’t work
  • T8436 apparmor-pipewire: test failed
  • T8440 agl-compositor : “PulseAudio Volume Control”, application icon not visible, shows a blank screen on v2021.3rc1
  • T8445 apparmor-functional-demo: test failed
  • T8448 U-Boot 2021.10 fails to boot ostree images
  • T8449 dbus-dos-reply-time: test failed
  • T8454 aum-offline-upgrade: test failed
  • T8456 aum-api: test failed
  • T8464 aum-ota-auto: test failed

Normal (68)

  • T2896 Crash when initialising egl on ARM target
  • T3233 Ribchester: deadlock when calling RemoveApp() right after RollBack()
  • T3321 libgles2-vivante-dev is not installable
  • T3920 arm-linux-gnueabihf-pkg-config does not work with sysroots installed by ade
  • T4092 Containers fail to load on Gen4 host
  • T4307 ribchester-core causes apparmor denies on non-btrfs minimal image
  • T4422 do-branching fails at a late stage cloning OBS binary repos
  • T4444 A 2-3 second lag between the speakers is observed when a hfp connection is made over bluetooth
  • T4693 Not able to create namespace for AppArmor container on the internal mx6qsabrelite images with proprietary kernel
  • T5487 Wi-Fi search button is missing in wifi application
  • T5748 System users are shipped in /usr/etc/passwd instead of /lib/passwd
  • T5896 sdk-dbus-tools-bustle testcase is failing
  • T5897 apparmor-ofono test fails
  • T5900 evolution-sync-bluetooth test fails
  • T5931 connman-usb-tethering test fails
  • T6024 sdk-dbus-tools-d-feet: folks-inspect: command not found
  • T6077 youtube Videos are not playing on upstream webkit2GTK
  • T6078 Page scroll is lagging in Minibrowser on upstream webkit2GTK
  • T6111 traprain: 7_traprain test failed
  • T6243 AppArmor ubercache support is no longer enabled after 18.12
  • T6292 gettext-i18n: test failed
  • T6349 sdk-code-analysis-tools-splint: 3_sdk-code-analysis-tools-splint test failed
  • T6366 sdk-cross-compilation: 10_sdk-cross-compilation test failed
  • T6446 aum-update-rollback-tests/amd64: DNS not available in LAVA tests after reboot
  • T6768 Fix the kernel command line generation in OSTRee for FIT image
  • T6773 HAB testing: the unsigned image may pass validation in several circumstances
  • T6795 SabreLite failing to boot due to failing “to start udev Coldplug all Devices”
  • T6806 HAB on SabreLite in open state accepts any signed kernel regardless of the signing key
  • T6885 gitlab-rulez fails to set location of the gitlab-ci.yaml on first run
  • T6961 audio-backhandling feature fails
  • T7000 DNS resolution does not work in Debos on some setups
  • T7012 Apparmor Denied session logs keep popping up on the terminal while executing tests
  • T7016 network proxy for browser application is not resolving on mildenhall-compositor
  • T7128 apparmor-session-lockdown-no-deny
  • T7129 apparmor-tumbler: test failed
  • T7333 apparmor-geoclue: test failed
  • T7512 debos sometimes fails to mount things
  • T7617 frome: test failed
  • T7721 Fakemachine in debos immediately powers off and hangs in v2021 and v2022dev1 when using UML on the runners
  • T7776 On executing system-update test on hawkbit-agent wrong delta is selected
  • T7785 DNS over TLS does not work on systemd-resolve
  • T7817 rhosydd: test failed
  • T7819 newport: test failed
  • T7827 When creaing new test repositories common-subtree.sh add gets confused if the checked out branch does not exists in tests/common
  • T7843 Package node-grunt-legacy-log fails to build in OBS due to environment variables
  • T7852 v2022dev2: Investigate test failure TestGetSourceMount
  • T7854 v2022dev2: FTBFS for package clisp in test streams.tst
  • T7872 Error building package ruby-redis on OBS
  • T7904 Failed unmounting /var message appears when v2022dev2 AMD64 Minimal OSTree image is shutdown
  • T7923 Gitlab pipeline OBS job reported “success” but OBS build was “unresolvable”
  • T7945 evolution-sync-bluetooth test fails in v2022dev2
  • T7964 assertion ‘G_IS_DBUS_PROXY (proxy)’ failed errors seeing on executing apertis-update-manager-ota-rollback test
  • T7977 v2022dev2 Persistent SDK tests fail
  • T8029 Unable to apply few of the gitlab-rulez for projects hosted on Gitlab
  • T8058 Rhosydd test fails to launch rhosydd-speedo-backend.service
  • T8069 Sound/Audio is not heard during the very first time when running the webkit2gtk-gstreamer1.0 test
  • T8074 Error wifi: Message recipient disconnected from message bus without replying observed on v2022dev3 images
  • T8175 License scan fails on package texlive-extra
  • T8194 ci-license-scan prints final error paragraph in the middle of scan-copyrights output
  • T8255 glib-gio-fs: test failed
  • T8281 dashboard: gnome-settings-daemon-data incorrectly flagged as missing the git repository
  • T8377 gupnp-services: test failed
  • T8411 tiny-container-system-connectivity-profile: test failed
  • T8412 tiny-container-user-connectivity-profile: test failed
  • T8423 apparmor-gstreamer1-0: test failed
  • T8435 “Add ‘reserved-memory’ node failed: FDT_ERR_EXISTS” log during boot