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New ‘Wolfi’ Linux Distro Focuses on Software Supply Chain Security

Chainguard this week announced Wolfi, a stripped-down Linux OS distribution designed to improve the security of the software supply chain.

Chainguard this week announced Wolfi, a stripped-down Linux OS distribution designed to improve the security of the software supply chain.

Available on GitHub, the community Linux distribution was created specifically for use with containers and cloud-native applications, and supports Chainguard images, the firm’s collection of curated distroless images.

Wolfi (named after star-sucker pygmy octopus, the smallest known octopus), relies on the environment’s kernel (instead of having its own) to be widely adaptable, and brings support for both glibc and musl.

According to the software supply chain security firm, Wolfi delivers build-time software bills of material (SBOM) for all packages, has a declarative and reproducible build system, and uses the apk package format. With Wolfi, packages are granular and independent, offering support for minimal images.

Wolfi, Chainguard says, is meant to help developers increase productivity by starting with a secure-by-default foundation that is not impacted by any known vulnerabilities, while also enabling organizations to control most modern supply chain threats.

“Wolfi builds all packages directly from source, allowing us to fix vulnerabilities or apply customizations that improve the supply chain security posture of everything from the compilers to the language package managers,” Chainguard explains.

The new Linux distro now powers all Chainguard images, a set of signed, minimal dependencies meant to significantly reduce attack surface, while simplifying auditing and updating. The images are rebuilt daily to ensure they have all the latest patches.

Related: US Gov Issues Guidance for Developers to Secure Software Supply Chain

Related: Aqua Security Ships Open Source Tool for Auditing Software Supply Chain

Related: Software Supply Chain Attacks Tripled in 2021: Study

Related: Chainguard Bags Massive $50M Series A for Supply Chain Security

Written By

Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

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