EdgeX Foundry, the Linux Foundation’s open source industrial IoT group, released its second major update to its open source IoT software. Dubbed California, the release has a smaller footprint so it can run more effectively at the edge and also incorporates several new security features.
The California release follows EdgeX’s first software release, called Barcelona, which occurred last October. California was originally scheduled to be released in April but was delayed until July so that the EdgeX developer community could rebuild the EdgeX code in Go Lang and reduce the footprint of the platform. “We launched Barcelona last October and had tremendous momentum,” said Jason Shepherd, EdgeX Foundry member and chair of the group’s governing board. “Even our developer count has doubled. We have more than 50 unique authors contributing to the code.”
But by reducing the footprint, not only can EdgeX better function at the edge, it also reduces the memory and CPU usage. For example, the total footprint of Barcelona was 267 MB and the total footprint of California is just 42 MB.
The new release also incorporates several security features because security wasn’t a big component of Barcelona. Stephens explained that the California release includes two key security features. The first feature is reverse proxy, which incorporates an open source product called Kong where any external client of an EdgeX microservice must first authenticate itself before calling on an EdgeX API. The second is a secure storage facility that incorporates the open source Vault product and allows items like username/password credentials, certificates, secure tokens, etc., to be protected within EdgeX.
Prior to this release, companies using the Barcelona release added their own security. Shepherd noted that this resulted in hundreds of different protocols and ways to secure and manage the backend.
EdgeX is set up with open APIs so that partners can add their own options to the software.
This open framework means that companies can “mix-and-match” components, Shepherd noted. “You can add priority where you want it and then invest. But you also have more consistent security and management tools.”
California is already being deployed in proof-of-concept settings. “We think it’s more mature than some of the stuff out there,” Shepherd added.
The next EdgeX Foundry release, dubbed Delhi, will occur in October. That release, according to Shepherd, will be much more production focused and each microservice will have APIs.