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Canonical announces support for the 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors with Intel vRAN Boost


on 27 February 2023

Reliable, high-speed connectivity unlocked for 5G radio networks

[Barcelona, Spain, 27 February 2023] – Canonical is proud to announce full support for Intel’s innovative new 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors with Intel vRAN Boost hardware platform family on Ubuntu Pro 22.04 LTS, delivering immediate compatibility with the advanced embedded silicon-based accelerators and a host of other improvements in the platform. With the integration of the Ubuntu real-time kernel, customers can immediately benefit from the power of Ubuntu Pro 22.04 LTS and drive their Open RAN architectures to meet the ever-increasing demand for fast and reliable connectivity in the modern mobile network landscape.

Unlocking the potential of open-source software for mobile networks

The use of open-source operating systems and applications in mobile networks brings numerous benefits to telecommunications companies. These technologies support innovation, modernisation, scalability and cost-effectiveness, and drive advancements in domains like OpenRAN architectures. Open-source software also ensures transparency and collaboration in the development of network solutions, which accelerates the deployment of new services for mobile network subscribers. 

Ubuntu continues to be a leading operating system for many global enterprises. The OS has gained a strong reputation for security, resilience, and advanced features required by modern mobile operators. This trend is driven by a relentless focus on automation, hardware and kernel feature enablement, and the latest telecommunications-specific features, including real-time kernel support for virtualised radio networks based on technologies like Intel FlexRAN reference software. 

Powering up for enhanced efficiency

By leveraging Ubuntu real-time kernel operating on the Intel Xeon scalable processors with vRAN boost in an Open RAN architecture, operators can build modern, scalable, power-efficient and cost-effective 5G networks, ensure 6G readiness, and enable the deployment of innovative new services for subscribers. 

With the implementation of a virtualised, Open RAN architecture, mobile operators can deploy specific network functions, allowing for greater flexibility and efficient utilisation of network resources. 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors deliver up to twice the capacity at the same power envelope for vRAN workloads compared to the previous generation. These processors also integrate vRAN acceleration directly into the CPU providing approximately 20% additional compute power savings.

The Ubuntu real-time kernel has been optimised for 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors with Intel vRAN Boost and meets 5G real-time performance requirements. Canonical Ubuntu has been validated on both Dell and HPE platforms based on these devices, ensuring that the solution offers unrivalled reliability and scalability, as well as operator choice.

“The early availability of Ubuntu Pro 22.04 LTS with real-time kernel compatible with the 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors with Intel vRAN Boost is a continuation of Canonical’s commitment to supporting Intel’s network and edge innovations, which also includes FlexRAN reference software,” says Arno van Huyssteen, CTO Communications Service Providers at Canonical. “Ubuntu Pro 22.04 LTS with real-time kernel was engineered to enable unrivalled performance and efficiency for Communications Service Providers. We’re delighted to work with our OpenRAN ecosystem partners like Intel to continue delivering this capability to the industry.

“The availability of Ubuntu real-time kernel for the 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors with Intel vRAN Boost is meaningful for the ecosystem,” says Cristina Rodriguez, VP and GM of Wireless Access Network Division at Intel. “This enables the RAN industry to rapidly develop and deploy sustainable, high-performant networks, and demonstrates the value of innovation and co-creation in the telecommunications industry.”

About Canonical

Canonical is the publisher of Ubuntu, the leading OS for container, cloud and hyperscale computing. Ubuntu is the OS for most public cloud workloads as well as the emerging categories of smart gateways, 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. 

Please note Intel, the Intel logo, and other Intel marks are trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries.

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