Ostro™ OS Quick Start Guide🔗

This quick start guide explains how to install the Ostro OS development environment on your development system and to install and run applications on Ostro™ OS Supported Platforms.

Refer to the Ostro OS Release Notes for specific details about capabilities and status of features for the current release.

You’ll find a summary of resources to find Ostro OS images, source code, documentation, and support systems in Ostro™ Project Access and Community Support Resources

This guide describes two ways to get started with your investigation and use of the Ostro OS:

  • Download one of the pre-built Ostro OS images, ready to run on a supported hardware platform, or emulated using a Virtual Machine.
  • Download the source code, examine and customize the OS and packages, and use the Yocto Project tools to generate a new image that is tailored to your specific application needs.


You can do Ostro OS development using a reasonable current Linux-based host system capable of running Yocto Project tools used to configure and build Ostro OS images. You should be familiar with the Yocto Project terminology and processes and how to use these tools as documented at the Yocto Project web site. A good place to start is with the Yocto Project Quick Start Guide.

Downloading a Pre-Built Ostro OS Image🔗

A fast way to investigate the Ostro OS is to download one of the pre-built Ostro OS images, ready to run on Ostro™ OS Supported Platforms (or emulated using a Virtual Machine). Ostro OS images are available from https://download.ostroproject.org

Within each of the hardware-specific release folders you’ll find an images folder, and in that folder, you’ll find a .dsk file that can be directly written to a hard disk or booted on a USB thumb drive (written there with dd). This .dsk file contains a raw full-disk image with boot partition and rootfs with sizes fixed at compile time. For a faster download, you’ll also find compressed versions of the .dsk file (with a .dsk.xz extension).

Note that the bit-support of the UEFI firmware on your hardware platform (such as a MinnowBoard MAX) and for the Ostro OS distro must match; i.e., you need a 64-bit Ostro OS image for a board with 64-bit firmware. Check the firmware version on your board to verify which bit-support is configured.

Once you’ve downloaded the image for your supported hardware, you’re ready to load and run that image on your Ostro™ OS Supported Platforms or emulation environment.

Setting up and Building an Ostro OS Image🔗

If you don’t want to use one of the pre-built images, you can get the Ostro OS sources and make your own image. We’ve written a Building Ostro™ OS Images tech note that explains this procedure.

You should be familiar with the Yocto Project build tools as explained in the Yocto Project Quick Start Guide. This guide has step-by-step instructions and system requirements for setting up your host computer’s development environment and tools needed to build an Ostro OS image.

Briefly (and as fully explained in the Yocto Project Quick Start Guide), you’ll need:

  • A host system with a minimum of 50 Gbytes of free disk space that is running a supported Linux distribution (i.e. recent releases of Fedora, openSUSE, CentOS, Debian, or Ubuntu). If your host system supports multiple cores and threads, you can configure the Yocto Project build system to take advantage of this and significantly decrease the time needed to build images.
  • Appropriate developer packages (gawk, make, python, perl, patch, and others) installed on the system you are using for builds
  • A release of the Yocto Project (included when you clone the ostroproject repo from GitHub).

Once you’ve followed the Yocto Project instructions to get your computer ready to host a project, you may also need to set up proxy information if you’re sitting behind a firewall.

You’ll also need to create an SSH public key (if you don’t already have one) and add that key to your GitHub profile as explained in these GitHub Generating SSH Keys instructions. (These instructions also show how to confirm that your proxy and SSH key are set correctly.)

The Yocto Project Quick Start Guide offers detailed instructions and explanations about the build environment and processes.

Briefly, you start by setting up the environment for building the Ostro OS by cloning the ostroproject/ostro-os GitHub repo, editing configuration files, and then starting the build. Refer to the Building Ostro™ OS Images tech note for more information.

If you made no changes, you should end up with a binary .dsk file that is functionally equivalent to an image in the Ostro Project binary release folder.

Running an Ostro OS image🔗

Once you have an Ostro OS image (by downloading a pre-built image or by building your own), you’ll want to install and run it on your target hardware or VM environment. We’ve written a Booting and Installing an Ostro™ OS Image tech note that explains this procedure.