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RISC-V and RISE Initiatives


Scalable RISC-V Build and Test Infrastructure

A Linux distribution is built from a large amount of software sources and the build times of a whole Linux distribution is a critical element that can determine the amount of development iterations available over a certain quarter. 

At Canonical today we are using virtualized (QEMU) builders for RISC-V due to lack of hardware that has hypervisor extensions available. Once the appropriate platforms will be available it will greatly increase the capability of building and testing open source software packages at scale through Ubuntu. 


RISC-V Profiles Strategy for future Ubuntu versions

Mission Statement

Canonical's ambition is to power the latest and greatest capabilities of RISC-V via Ubuntu. Ubuntu enables innovators to explore the potential of RISC-V across the compute continuum. 

The RISC-V specifications are continuously evolving and for a Linux distribution the RISC-V Profiles Specification (https://github.com/riscv/riscv-profiles/blob/main/profiles.adoc) is of paramount importance. In order to provide the optimal performance on a given RISC-V platform the software needs to be compiled against the correct supported profile. As outlined in the paragraph above, the Linux distribution is consisted of over 30,000 software packages and a recompilation of the whole distribution for a different RISC-V profile is a non-trivial task. 

Our goals with Ubuntu are the following: support the latest RISC-V ratified profile, provide the best performance on available platforms and enable stable long-term supported releases for established and already existing RISC-V platforms. These are ambitious goals and through the RISE community we are in the process of evolving our strategy. 

Ubuntu Releases and RISC-V 

Ubuntu VersionRISC-V Profile(s) Supported
Ubuntu 20.04 LTSRVA20
Ubuntu 22.04 LTSRVA20
Ubuntu 24.04 LTSRVA20, additional tbd
Ubuntu 26.04 LTStbd

LTS or ‘Long Term Support’ releases are published every two years in April. LTS releases are the ‘enterprise grade’ releases of Ubuntu and are used the most. An estimated 95% of all Ubuntu installations are LTS releases. The currently active LTS is Ubuntu 22.04, and the upcoming LTS is Ubuntu 24.04. 

Ubuntu LTS releases receive 5 years of standard security maintenance for all packages in the ‘Main’ repository. With an Ubuntu Pro subscription, you get access to Expanded Security Maintenance (ESM) covering security fixes for packages in both the ‘Main’ and ‘Universe’ repositories for 10 years. Note: Anyone can use Ubuntu Pro for free on up to 5 machines, or 50 if you are an official Ubuntu Community member.

Learn more about the Ubuntu release cycle


Providing support for Vendor Specific Optimizations in Ubuntutbd



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