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Femto-Containers: DevOps on Microcontrollers with Lightweight Virtualization & Isolation for IoT Software Modules

Abstract : Development, deployment and maintenance of networked software has been revolutionized by DevOps, which have become essential to boost system software quality and to enable agile evolution. Meanwhile the Internet of Things (IoT) connects more and more devices which are not covered by DevOps tools: low-power, microcontroller-based devices. In this paper, we contribute to bridge this gap by designing Femto-Containers, a new architecture which enables containerization, virtualization and secure deployment of software modules embedded on microcontrollers over low-power networks. As proof-of-concept, we implemented and evaluated Femto-Containers on popular microcontroller architectures (Arm Cortex-M, ESP32 and RISC-V), using eBPF virtualization, and RIOT, a common operating system in this space. We show that Femto-Containers can virtualize and isolate multiple software modules, executed concurrently, with very small memory footprint overhead (below 10%) and very small startup time (tens of microseconds) compared to native code execution. We show that Femto-Containers can satisfy the constraints of both low-level debug logic inserted in a hot code path, and high-level business logic coded in a variety of common programming languages. Compared to prior work, Femto-Containers thus offer an attractive trade-off in terms of memory footprint, energy consumption, agility and security.
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https://hal.inria.fr/hal-03263164
Contributor : Emmanuel Baccelli Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, November 3, 2021 - 5:16:26 PM
Last modification on : Friday, February 4, 2022 - 3:16:26 AM

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Femto-Container-preprint-v2.pd...
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  • HAL Id : hal-03263164, version 2

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Koen Zandberg, Emmanuel Baccelli. Femto-Containers: DevOps on Microcontrollers with Lightweight Virtualization & Isolation for IoT Software Modules. 2021. ⟨hal-03263164v2⟩

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