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All grown up: Raspberry Pis running Ubuntu added to IoT patching service KernelCare

No downtime for major updates

CloudLinux has added the Raspberry Pi to its KernelCare patching service, although only if you're running Ubuntu.

While CloudLinux might have recently been in the headlines regarding its CentOS alternative, its KernelCare service has been ticking over quietly since 2014, patching the running kernel when needed "with zero downtime".

The arrival of the service is a recognition of the diminutive computer's presence in the IoT world, where implementations tend to be more on the appliance side and ongoing security updates are not always applied. The consequences of a failure to patch a connected IoT device can range from inconvenient to catastrophic.

The system works by allocating kernel memory for the new code, pauses all processes, modifies the original functions, jumps to the new code, then resumes processing. No reboot is required.

Oracle's Ksplice will also update critical components, affording Linux fans with pockets deep enough for Oracle Linux Premier Support the ability to dodge downtime when the patch fairy beckons.

KernelCare's take on the Raspberry Pi is free for enthusiasts, but commercial users are expected to pay a fee. The supported chips are the BCM2711 of the Pi 4 and the BCM2837 of the Pi 3 as well as some later Pi 2 models. Operating system-wise, Ubuntu Focal Fossa for the 64-bit ARM platform is supported. Debian and Raspbian are due "soon". ®

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