Best Top 15 free IoT Operating System used for development

IoT Operating System - embedded Operating system

15 Free IoT Operating Systems (embedded Operating system):

Following are Top 15 free IoT Operating System used for Internet of Things Application development. These all are Open source, you can use it for personal and commercial purpose. These are also used as embedded Operating system for embedded application development.

All are stable and support all recognized Single board computers like Raspberry Pi Boards, Beagle Bone Board, Intel Galileo Board, Banana Pi, etc

1. Raspbian

Raspbian is specially developed free official Raspberry Pi OS. It is one of the most famous OS from ‘free Operating System for IoT ‘group. Raspbian is a variation of Debian Linux optimized to run on the Raspberry Pi.

Raspbian comes with plenty of pre-installed software for education, programming, and general applications.

It has Python, Java, Scratch, Sonic Pi, Mathematica, etc and it includes more than 35,000 applications modules that can run on the device.

More details at Raspbian

2. Ubuntu Core

Ubuntu core is one of the most popular distributions of Linux, and this variation brings Ubuntu to the Internet of Things.

It is the secure, robust and lightweight operating system for the internet of things.

It runs on Cloud Computing like Google Compute Engine, Microsoft Azure, Amazon Elastic Compute as well as Raspberry Pi 3, Raspberry Pi 4, Beagle Bone and other Single Board Computers.

More details at Ubuntu Core

3. Ubuntu MATE

Ubuntu MATE is an easy-to-use and most stable operating system with a configurable desktop environment.

Ubuntu MATE compatible with modern workstations, single board computers, and older hardware also. It makes modern computers fast and old computers usable.

It is compatible with the Raspberry Pi boards.

More details at Ubuntu Mate


RISC OS OPEN is  fast and easily customized operating system for ARM devices. It is one of the popular embedded operating system for

RISC OS Pi is the official RISC OS distribution for the Raspberry Pi computer.

RISC OS is an operating system which was designed and developed specifically for the ARM processor by the original ARM creators. It is compact, fast and efficient.

More details at RISC OS OPEN

5. FreeRTOS – Embedded Operating system

FreeRTOS is also known as FreeRTOS Kernal. It is developed over 15-year partnership with the world’s leading chip companies.

Now FreeRTOS kernel is a market leader for RTOS (Real-Time Operating System) and standard solution for small microprocessors and microcontrollers.

It is completely free and supported even for commercial used applications. It is compatible with Raspberry Pi and other single board computers.

More details at FreeRTOS


RIOT is the friendly IoT operating system for IoT and embedded development and it is developer-friendly, resource-friendly, and IoT-friendly.
Key features include support for C and C++, partial POSIX compliance, multi-threading, energy efficiency and more. It supports IoT devices and single-board computers.

More details at RIOT

7. ARM Mbed OS

Arm Mbed OS is a free open source embedded operating system designed specifically for the “things” in IoT. It is one of the popular IoT operating system.

It includes all the features that the developer need to develop a connected product based on an Arm Cortex-M microcontroller. It includes security, connectivity, an RTOS, and drivers for sensors and I/O devices.

More details at Arm Mbed

See also: BeagleBone Black – Introduction to New IoT Device

8. Contiki

Contiki is a free open source IoT operating system for the Internet of Things application development.

This OS connects tiny low-cost, low-power microcontrollers to the Internet and it is a powerful toolbox for building complex wireless systems.

for more info about Contiki, visit below link given at more details.

More details at Contiki

9. Tizen

Tizen is an open and flexible OS built to address the needs of the connected device ecosystem and all stakeholders of the mobile, including mobile operators, device manufacturers, application developers and ISVs (independent software vendors).

It is a Linux-based free operating system for mobile and connected devices, and it comes in versions for vehicles, smartphones and tablets, TV and wearable.

By working with device partners you can customize the operating system and user experience to meet the needs of demographics customers.

More details at Tizen

10. eLinux OS

eLinux kernel (or a portion of it) support number of IoT devices. Due to lightweight and stable, it runs smoothly on embedded devices including Single board computer like Raspberry Pi and Beagle Bone Boards.

Check below link for extensive information about using Linux in embedded systems.

More details at eLinux

11. TinyOS

TinyOS is a free and an open source, BSD-licensed OS designed for low-power wireless devices. It is OS used in sensor networks, personal area networks, ubiquitous computing, smart buildings, and smart meters.

It provides excellent support for networking and low-power operations.

More details at: TinyOS

12. Windows 10 IoT

This free operating system built for the Internet of Things, this is another most famous IoT Operating system from ‘free Operating System for IoT’ group.

Windows 10 IoT Core is a version of Windows 10 that is optimized for smaller devices with or without a display, and that runs on the Raspberry Pi 2 and Raspberry Pi 3, Arrow DragonBoard 410c & MinnowBoard MAX.

Windows 10 IoT Core utilizes the rich, extensible Universal Windows Platform (UWP) API for building great solutions.

More details at: Windows 10 IoT


13. OSMC

Open source Media Center (OSMC) is a Linux based free open source Media player.

It allows you to play media from your local network, attached storage and the Internet.

OSMC is the leading media center in terms of community, feature set and it is based on the Kodi project. It is compatible with the Raspberry Pi boards.

More details at OSMC

14. LibreELEC

LibreELEC runs Kodi (Kodi is used as a media player and entertainment hub for digital media)

It supports many of the popular HTPC hardware solutions, from Raspberry Pi 0/1/2/3 to Wetek, Odroid C2 and iMX6 (both via community support), and Intel based machines using Nvidia, AMD and Intel graphics solutions.

More details at LibreELEC

15. PiNET

PiNET is free and open source projects for helping schools set up and manage a Raspberry Pi classroom.

Its key features include

  • Network-based user accounts
  • Network-based operating system
  • Shared folders and work collection system.
  • Automated backups Many more small features like classroom management software integration, batch user import, etc.

More details at PiNET

See alsoWhat is IoT framework? List top 10 Open source IoT frameworks


Let us know what you think about above mentioned 15 free IoT Operating System i.e open source Embedded Operating system in the comment section below.

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