Canonical Ubuntu 22.04 LTS is now generally available, featuring significant leaps forward in cloud confidential computing, real-time kernel for industrial applications, and enterprise Active Directory, PCI-DSS, HIPAA, FIPS and FedRAMP compliance – raising the bar for open source from cloud to edge, IoT and workstations. Canonical partners with industry leaders to deliver enterprise-grade security, long-term maintenance and support on all major architectures, hardware and clouds.
“Our mission is to be a secure, reliable and consistent open-source platform – everywhere”, said Mark Shuttleworth, CEO of Canonical. “Ubuntu 22.04 LTS unlocks innovation for industries with demanding infrastructure security requirements, such as telecommunications and industrial automation, underpinning their digital transformation.“
Confidential Computing and Arm drive public cloud innovation
Ubuntu is deeply integrated into public clouds and optimised for performance, security and ease of use. A key new capability is Confidential Computing, which greatly improves data protection and privacy in leading public clouds without requiring any changes to existing application deployments.
Ubuntu is the only Linux distribution supporting Azure Confidential VMs. “Azure’s confidential VMs deliver confidentiality between different cloud customers and also between customers and Azure operators. Hardware-level encrypted guest isolation, combined with measured boot and TPM-backed full-disk encryption in Ubuntu and Azure Managed HSM, customer code and data are encrypted in use, in transit, and at rest using encryption keys that are protected and can be controlled by the customer,” said Vikas Bhatia, Head of Product for Azure Confidential Computing.
“Canonical has been an important partner in this effort, working closely with us to bring confidential computing innovations to our customers”.
To ensure great performance on Arm, Canonical also optimised Ubuntu 22.04 LTS images for AWS Graviton. On AWS, Ubuntu is available from EC2, with multiple images including support for the latest Graviton chips, all the way to containers.
Oracle Cloud Infrastructure works closely with Canonical to enable Ubuntu on all its hardware. ”With Ubuntu 22.04 LTS on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, developers get a highly optimised operating system and kernel with excellent boot speed, security and stability,” said Bo English-Wiczling, Senior Director, Developer Relations, Oracle. “This includes the latest Arm servers, Ampere A1, where we provide high-performing and cost-effective solutions for all types of workloads.”
Ubuntu is where developers are
For innovators on Raspberry Pi, Ubuntu 22.04 LTS marks the first LTS release with Ubuntu Desktop support on the Raspberry Pi 4. “With Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, the entire recent Raspberry Pi device portfolio is supported for the very first time, from the new Raspberry Pi Zero 2W to the Raspberry Pi 4”, said Eben Upton, CEO of Raspberry Pi Trading. “It’s great to see a certified Ubuntu Desktop release that includes support for the 2GB Raspberry Pi 4, giving developers all over the world access to the most affordable development desktop environment.”
Ubuntu WSL delivers deep integration with native Windows development environments like Visual Studio Code and Docker Desktop across a shared file system. Users mix Windows and Linux commands to create efficient workflows for data science, web development and IT systems management. Users of Ubuntu WSL can upgrade to 22.04 LTS directly.
Canonical partners with OEMs to offer enterprise-focused Ubuntu WSL, pre-enabled on Windows workstations, for streamlined Linux and Windows development. “Dell’s WSL-enabled Precision Workstations bring the power of Ubuntu to Windows users,” said Kyle Harper, Director of Artificial Intelligence Strategy, Precision Workstations at Dell Technologies. “With support for tools like NVIDIA CUDA, Tensorflow and PyTorch, Ubuntu WSL increases the accessibility of data science and AI/ML workloads with performance approaching Ubuntu on bare metal. No need to reboot between Ubuntu and Windows anymore, for many AI/ML/DL workflows.”
For Windows and MacOS developers, Multipass provides Ubuntu 22.04 LTS VMs on demand with full cloud-init for cloud prototyping at home. Multipass gains Apple M1 support, making it the best way to drive development for new Arm cloud instances. Multipass has also added support for Docker workflows – unifying the developer experience for cloud and cloud-native applications.
For shared development environments, multi-user LXD offers per-user project segregation, restricting specific user permissions so multiple people can safely share the same LXD cluster.
The platform for data-intensive workloads
SQL Server on Ubuntu Pro LTS for Azure offers exceptional scalability and performance. It gives business-critical SQL Server workloads access to comprehensive open source security on Azure. SQL Server on Ubuntu Pro is backed by Microsoft and Canonical, and comes with 24/7 support for the entire solution.
With Ubuntu 22.04 LTS, NVIDIA virtual GPU (vGPU) software drivers are generally available. Data scientists can natively install NVIDIA vGPU Software 14.0 and benefit from highly performant GPU resources across multiple virtual machines at the same time. This allows data scientists to parallelise and isolate advanced AI/ML workloads, while ensuring that the underlying hardware resources are used efficiently.
To meet the demands of AI/ML, HPC and data science workloads, developers and enterprises rely on NVIDIA-accelerated computing, with Ubuntu supported on NVIDIA DGX systems as well as NVIDIA-Certified Systems running the NVIDIA AI Enterprise software suite.
“Enterprises, data scientists and developers building AI solutions require integrated systems and software that easily support MLOps workflows,” said Manuvir Das, Vice President of Enterprise Computing at NVIDIA. “Organisations can now run NVIDIA AI on Ubuntu to help solve some of humanity’s biggest challenges with new products and systems that simplify operations, boost safety and improve communication.”
Canonical offers enterprise-grade security maintenance and 24/7 support for a range of open source SQL and no-SQL database systems, including MySQL, PostgreSQL and Redis. With Charmed Apache Kafka, Canonical introduces a comprehensive, highly automated and fully supported solution for streaming data-processing at scale. Charmed solutions automate deployment and operation of complex, software-intensive systems. Engineers using cloud-native solutions such as Kubernetes will benefit from new Docker container images for popular open source data processing solutions.
LTS Docker images
The Ubuntu 22.04 LTS base image is available on Docker Hub along with a Canonical-maintained portfolio of secure and stable LTS application container images.
“Ubuntu plays an essential role on Docker Hub, as one of the most popular Docker Official Images.” said Webb Stevens, SVP of Secure Software Supply chain at Docker. “Beyond the base image, Canonical also publishes a well-maintained portfolio of secure and stable OCI-compliant images as a member of the Docker Verified Publisher program. As a Docker Verified Publisher, Canonical delivers friction-free access to trusted content to developers through Docker Hub without rate limits.”
Existing LTS Docker images on Ubuntu will receive new long-term supported 22.04-based tracks, including MySQL, PostgreSQL and NGINX. The open-source applications portfolio is expanding further, focusing on Observability and Big Data, with new Grafana Loki, Apache Kafka and Apache Cassandra container images.
Real-time kernel for telco and industrial applications
Canonical is pleased to announce the Ubuntu 22.04 LTS real-time kernel, now available in beta. Designed to meet telco network transformation needs for 5G, Ubuntu 22.04 LTS with the real-time kernel delivers performance, guaranteed ultra-low latency and security for critical infrastructure. This new kernel also serves latency-sensitive use cases in industrial automation and robotics.
“Ubuntu 22.04 LTS’s real-time kernel unlocks low-latency use cases for real-time applications like Cloud RAN,” said Dan Lynch, Marketing Director at Intel. “Together with Canonical, we have validated Intel’s FlexRAN SDK to enable OpenRAN implementations requiring pre-emptive real-time kernel capabilities to meet 5G latency requirements.”
With the PREEMPT_RT patchset integrated for x86 and Arm64 architectures, Ubuntu’s real-time kernel enables extreme latency-dependent use cases and provides deterministic response times to service events.
“The real-time kernel in Ubuntu 22.04 LTS leverages the acceleration from Intel hardware, allowing us to compete on even terms with the biggest network equipment providers”, says Radoslaw Adamczyk, Technical Lead at IS-Wireless, which develops and delivers mobile networks in the OpenRAN model. “Now we have one platform for the whole stack, from bare metal with MAAS to Ubuntu OS, LXD VM and Microk8s on the edge – tested, validated, verified and secure.“
Enhanced enterprise compliance
Canonical Ubuntu makes it straightforward to conform to various industry compliance standards, such as PCI-DSS, HIPAA and FedRAMP.
“FIPS 140-2 certified Ubuntu images on AWS fulfil our FedRAMP compliance requirements,” said Patrick Kaeding, Security Engineer at LaunchDarkly. “With enterprise-grade Ubuntu LTS support backed by 10 years maintenance commitment from Canonical, LaunchDarkly provides critical development infrastructure for some of the world’s most recognised brands.”
To support security management operations, CVE and related vulnerability information for Canonical Ubuntu LTS releases are now published as an OVAL stream and integrated into industry-standard scanning and audit tools.
“Tenable and Canonical collaborate behind the scenes to make security vulnerability alerts in Tenable’s suite of Vulnerability Management products timely, accurate and actionable throughout the whole 10-year lifecycle of Ubuntu LTS”, said Robert Huber, Chief Security Officer at Tenable. “Together, we give our joint customers a secure, stable and trustworthy open-source platform.”
Active Directory is now fully supported in the Ubuntu installer with Advanced Group Policy Object, and allows more refined user permissions and script execution control from within Active Directory.
“Ubuntu 22.04 LTS enables our customers to manage their Ubuntu devices with the same tools as their Windows devices, adds support for Thunderbolt 4, 5G modems and Wi-Fi 6E, and introduces new features like power slider and ePrivacy screen”, said Igor Bergman, Vice President, SW/Cloud for PC & Smart Device at Lenovo. “Lenovo is excited to continue to work together with Canonical to enable upcoming ThinkPad, ThinkCentre and ThinkStation platforms on the Ubuntu 22.04 LTS release.”
Timely, performant and customisable
Ubuntu 22.04 LTS adds Rust for memory-safe systems-level programming. It also moves to OpenSSL v3, with new cryptographic algorithms for elevated security.
Ubuntu Desktop 22.04 LTS gains significant usability, battery and performance improvements with GNOME 42 featuring GNOME power profiles and streamlined workspace transitions alongside significant optimisations which can double the desktop frame rate on Intel and Raspberry Pi graphics drivers.
For the fashion-conscious, Ubuntu 22.04 LTS offers ten different accent colours, applied to both the dark and light variants of the Yaru theme, as well as the widest selection of community wallpapers to date.
Ubuntu 22.04 LTS is available today on Ubuntu Downloads and major public clouds.
Canonical is behind Ubuntu, the leading OS for container, cloud, and hyperscale computing. Most public cloud workloads use Ubuntu, as do most new smart gateways, switches, self-driving cars, and advanced robots. Canonical provides enterprise security, support, and services to commercial users of Ubuntu. Established in 2004, Canonical is a privately held company.
I am one of the editors here at www.systemtek.co.uk I am a UK based technology professional, with an interest in computer security and telecoms.