CheriBSD 22.05 Release Notes

The CHERI Project is pleased to announce our Getting Started release of CheriBSD (22.05). The Getting Started release has been timed to coincide with the May 2022 availability of Arm's CHERI-enabled Morello Board prototype.

CheriBSD is an adaptation of FreeBSD for CHERI, providing an experimental operating system with a rich use of the Morello prototype architecture’s features. It is intended to be a platform for general research, development, evaluation, and demonstration for secure, memory-safe CHERI-enabled systems. CheriBSD provides spatial and referential memory safety to all software running in userspace and, optionally, the entire operating system kernel. Future releases will also implement CHERI-based temporal memory safety and software compartmentalization features.

The Getting Started release is delivered as an installable image which needs to be downloaded, written to a USB storage device, and installed on the Morello Board. Read the Getting Started with CheriBSD guide to learn more how to obtain a copy of the latest release and install it. The guide also includes information on what third-party software is available for CheriBSD and Morello.

The best way to contact CheriBSD developers, CHERI researchers, and other CheriBSD users is via the CHERI-CPU Slack, which includes a #cheribsd channel.

There are also several mailing lists that people following the project may be interested in:

  • Announcements List: Announcements of new releases and updates.
  • Discussion List: General discussion of CheriBSD development, both within and on top of the CheriBSD operating system.
  • Ports List: Discussion of software ports to CheriBSD of popular packages, as well as those that are present in the FreeBSD Ports Collection.

We gratefully acknowledge our sponsors and supporters including UKRI, DARPA, Arm, Google, Microsoft, and others. We offer many thanks to the complete CHERI hardware, software, and formal teams at SRI International and the University of Cambridge, without whom this work would never have taken place.

CheriBSD/Morello is a Digital Security by Design (DSbD) technology. This work was supported in part by the UK Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ICSCF) and Innovate UK project Digital Security by Design (DSbD) Technology Platform Prototype, 105694.