Commercial embedded Linux benefits: long term savings

31st July 2019
Posted By : Anna Flockett
Commercial embedded Linux benefits: long term savings

Commercially-supported embedded Linux is the best choice for embedded systems. It provides organisations with the support they need to create customised solutions at a fraction of the cost of developing them on your own. This is the second part, in a series about the main benefits of utilising a commercially-supported embedded Linux solution. Part 1 explains how commercial embedded Linux helps you get to market faster and part 3 will review how you can simplify compliance.

Guest blog written by Pavan Singh, Wind River.

Here’s how commercial Linux can provide long term savings for your organisation.

Commercially-supported embedded Linux helps decrease costs

While commercial embedded Linux tends to have higher upfront costs than community Linux distributions – long-term it provides significant savings compared to maintaining a customised version of a community distribution.

Support and maintenance

Linux is large, complicated, and requires significant effort from your engineers to provide adequate support, patches, and vulnerability management over time. In the long run, using a commercial offering is generally less expensive than maintaining a roll-your-own (RYO) solution in-house.

Long-term, it’s more expensive to support and maintenance on an RYO Linux.

While it’s difficult to make broad generalisations about the cost of creating and maintaining your own embedded Linux two things must always be considered:

  1. The cost is considerable
  2. That cost is almost always wildly underestimated

Here’s an example estimating the five year investment costs required for a telecommunications device:

Here are the main variables that contribute to the long-term cost of maintaining your system:

  • Type of embedded device
  • The life span of the device
  • Security requirements
  • Virtualisation
  • Application footprint
  • Internet connectivity
  • High availability or fault tolerance requirements
  • Global vs local deployments
  • Free open-source software / open-source policy requirements
  • Whether you will be updating devices in the field

Want to calculate the total cost of ownership for your specific use case? Try our online cost calculator.

Better and cheaper security

Organisations can no longer rely on 'fire and forget' device deployment. The more devices you have, the more entry points you have, and the more potential risk you are exposed to. Every single exploit is making connected devices more vulnerable. Managing and mitigating threats is essential for the protection of end-users but requires an engagement that is beyond the scope of most IoT developers, device manufacturers, and operators.

The more devices you have, the more entry points you have, and the more potential risk you are exposed to.

Curious how many threats your device will face before end of life? Try the security threat calculator.

Secure and manage embedded products with wind river

While the initial costs of a commercially-supported embedded Linux solution may seem daunting, they provide significant savings in the long run. Commercial support ensures there is a dedicated team providing long-term support, maintenance, and timely patches to keep interconnected products safe from security threats.

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