As Edge Applications Multiply, OpenInfra Community Delivers StarlingX 5.0, Offering Cloud Infrastructure Stack for 5G, IoT

Everything carriers and enterprises need to deploy edge clouds for 5G, IoT is in open source StarlingX 5.0, available today; new features enhance security, operability and automation.

AUSTIN, Texas—June 2, 2021—StarlingX—the open source edge computing and IoT cloud platform optimized for low-latency and high-performance applications—is available in its 5.0 release today. StarlingX combines Ceph, OpenStack, Kubernetes and more to create a full-featured cloud software stack that provides everything carriers and enterprises need to deploy an edge cloud on a few servers or hundreds of them.

New features in StarlingX 5.0 include:

  • edgeworker nodes, which enable customized operating systems near and at the edge
  • security enhancements
  • improvements to orchestration and automation
  • upgrades to and containerization of integrated open source components

***Download StarlingX 5.0 at***

StarlingX is in production, driving top 5G deployments

T-Systems and Verizon rely on StarlingX for their edge and production vRAN use cases, and a growing set of organizations are also evaluating the project for production deployment.

“It’s been exciting to see the tremendous increase in StarlingX community activity, not only in terms of commercial adoptions and evaluations but also with respect to investments in the project by many different organizations and individual contributors,” said Paul Miller, chief technology officer, Wind River. 

“We’re also seeing now, as a result of early market adoption of this open source stack, the use of StarlingX in edge computing and industrial IoT solutions,” Miller continued. “With market research indicating that about 70% of compute will be moving towards the edge over the next five years or so, we foresee continued strong adoption and investment in StarlingX community activity. As an original contributor to the code base and a strong supporter of the project, we are encouraged to see business being driven by StarlingX. The kind of ecosystem development we’re seeing around StarlingX is exactly what you want to see in a thriving open source community.”

Key Features of StarlingX 5.0

To further support the low-latency and distributed cloud requirements of edge computing and industrial IoT use cases, the community prioritized these features in StarlingX 5.0:

  • Support for ‘edgeworker’ nodes, a new personality distinguished from ‘worker’ nodes. Edgeworker nodes are usually deployed close to an edge device, such as an I/O device, a camera, a servo motor or a sensor, to manage host-based enrollment. The ‘edgeworker’ personality is particularly suitable when users want a lightweight approach, deploying only a few agents on the nodes. With edgeworker nodes, users can enroll new operating systems and new server classes, which expands the possibility for new StarlingX use cases.
  • Support for Nvidia GPUs, enabling operators to do additional offload for those particular workloads that require GPU interacting, such as machine learning or other image-based processing. 
  • Support for FPGA image update orchestration. FPGA and acceleration are important features of edge systems. The new FPGA image update orchestration feature in StarlingX 5.0 improves operations, supporting automation across the distributed cluster. This gives users the option to deploy FPGA with orchestrations that are automated from end to end.
  • A PTP notification feature to further extend StarlingX’s support of Precision Time Protocol. Operators can now receive notifications about the PTP state and take action in case the system time is no longer in sync with the PTP clock source, which is critical for time-sensitive applications.
  • Vault integration for secret management, a security focused feature. Users want the ability to store and access secrets securely. These secrets can include credentials, encryption keys, API tokens and other data that should not be stored in plain text on a system. Vault, an open source project, provides the ability to encrypt and store secrets with access control via a range of authorization and access policy configurations. Vault’s features include dynamic secret generation, data encryption, leasing and renewal, revocation and audit/logging. The integration of Vault improves StarlingX’s security posture and encryption capabilities while maintaining manageability.

Other additions to the new version include:

  • Improvements to certification management to enhance automation
  • Containerized Ceph storage by using Rook
  • Support for Net-SNMP v3 for the fault management service
  • CephFS for cluster storage 
  • Container Image Signature Validation

Learn more about these and other features of StarlingX 5.0 in the community’s release notes.

OpenInfra Community Drives StarlingX Progress

The StarlingX project launched in 2018. Since then, there have been more than 10,000 commits from over 260 authors. Today’s 5.0 release added 1100 commits from 105 developers to those total numbers. The StarlingX community is actively collaborating with several other groups such as the OpenInfra Edge Computing Group, ONAP, Akraino and more.

After initial code for the project was contributed by Wind River and Intel to the Open Infrastructure Foundation, the active community of support for StarlingX has expanded to include 99Cloud, FiberHome, and China UnionPay, among others. China UnionPay, China Unicom, T-Systems and Verizon have become early adopters of the software.

Community Accolades for StarlingX 5.0   

“The StarlingX community is continuously making significant progress,” said Shuquan Huang, technical director, 99Cloud Inc. “We’re excited to see StarlingX 5.0 is available with a lot of enhancements and new features. StarlingX will be the key to meet the requirement of edge computing, and it’s time to use the latest StarlingX platform to build your edge cloud.”

“The StarlingX 5.0 release is a new stage for edge computing,” said Wang Hao, senior software engineer, FiberHome Enterprise. “There are some great features that have been introduced to the platform to enhance edge computing security and bring more flexibility to different types of nodes that will extend StarlingX’s application to more edge scenarios.  Fiberhome will continue to focus on edge computing techniques and work with the StarlingX community to bring more values to our users.”

Project Resources

About StarlingX

StarlingX is the open source edge computing and IoT cloud platform optimized for low latency and high performance applications. It provides a scalable and highly reliable edge infrastructure, tested and available as a complete stack. Applications include industrial IoT, telecom, video delivery and other ultra-low latency use cases. StarlingX ensures compatibility among diverse open source components and provides unique project components for fault management and service management, among others, to ensure high availability of user applications. StarlingX is the ready-for-deployment code base for edge implementations in scalable solutions. StarlingX is an Open Infrastructure Foundation project. 



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