Red Hat Sets Sights on Delivering the First Continuously Certified Linux Platform for Road Vehicles

Open source leader to add predictable Linux platform with ongoing certifications for a variety of in-vehicle, safety-related applications, from infotainment to driver operations


Red Hat, Inc., the world's leading provider of open source solutions, today announced its intent to deliver a functional-safety certified, evolving Linux operating system for the automotive industry. Built from the trusted components of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, the world’s leading enterprise Linux platform, and in collaboration with exida, a leader in functional safety across multiple industries, this operating system will be designed for continuous updates throughout its lifecycle while still retaining crucial functional safety certifications. This brings greater flexibility to the automotive software ecosystem, enabling vehicle manufacturers and their partners to focus on innovative driving experiences with confidence in the behavior of the underlying foundation, which will be developed and maintained by Red Hat and continuously certified by exida.


With Red Hat’s Linux expertise, services and market position, and the exida leading position in assessment, safety analyses and certification, Red Hat and exida are committed to give automation and automotive companies with functional safety applications access to innovative and high-quality open source software.

Jonathan Moore

director, Advanced Systems, exida

As vehicles become increasingly more like mobile datacenters, from advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) to automated vehicles to infotainment, the operating system plays a fundamental role in the resulting software stack. Current automotive software is based on proprietary, limited and intentionally slow components to maximise risk reduction and minimize mistakes, enabling a safety argument to be constructed. Red Hat intends to add open innovation to automotive software while retaining this same commitment to functional safety, bringing expertise in both implementation of more secure computing at-scale and reliable Linux systems-building benefits to the automotive supply chain.

To do this, Red Hat has engaged with exida to help prepare for ISO 26262 certification, an international standard governing the functional safety of electronic systems on road-vehicles. The ISO 26262 standard is the adaptation of IEC 61508 series of standards to address the sector specific needs of electrical and/or electronic systems within road vehicles. The adaptation applies to all activities during the safety lifecycle of safety-related systems comprising electrical, electronic and software components.

Through this collaboration, Red Hat and exida will work towards the continuous certification of the intended Red Hat automotive Linux offering. exida serves as a world-leading accredited certification body specializing in automation and automotive systems with more than 500 work years of cumulative experience in functional safety and cybersecurity. Over nearly two decades of operation, exida maintains extensive relationships with many premium automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and many more automotive suppliers globally. exida maintains the largest database of failure mode information on all component parts used in safety related applications with over 400 billion operating hours of real world field data.

Red Hat’s open hybrid cloud solutions already power a vast array of critical, global workloads, from hospital information systems to worldwide financial networks. Underpinning all of these systems is Red Hat Enterprise Linux, which acts as a more stable, more secure and highly-reliable foundation for even the most sensitive applications. Red Hat intends to take this expertise and apply it to operational technologies, starting with automotive systems, with the potential to also encompass manufacturing equipment, robotics and more.

Supporting Quotes

Stefanie Chiras, senior vice president and general manager, Red Hat Enterprise Linux Business Unit, Red Hat

“Modern automobiles reimagine the customer driving experience, from the in-vehicle systems for safety and entertainment to the operation of the vehicle itself. This evolution doesn’t change the ever-present demand for greater reliability and functional safety, which extends to the software backbone of next-generation cars, all connected by edge computing and the open hybrid cloud. Red Hat is no stranger to delivering the foundation for critical enterprise workloads and, by working with exida, we now intend to bring our expertise and the capabilities of the world’s leading enterprise Linux platform to the automotive industry with the first Linux-based, continuously-certified road vehicle operating system.”

Jonathan Moore, director, Advanced Systems, exida 

exida is delighted to collaborate with Red Hat. With Red Hat’s Linux expertise, services and market position, and the exida leading position in assessment, safety analyses and certification, Red Hat and exida are committed to give automation and automotive companies with functional safety applications access to innovative and high-quality open source software. The Red Hat support and the exida open certification scheme based on a continuously enhanced safety case provides the leadership needed in the use of open source software at scale and a firm foundation for integrators to better understand safety features and safety assumptions when developing the next generation of automotive safety applications that take advantage of open source software ecosystems.”

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