Image support matrix

Kairos builds several artifacts for user convenience which are based on openSUSE, Alpine Linux, and Ubuntu.

The images are pushed over, and are available for installation and upgrading.

The installable mediums part of the releases are generated with the methods described in the automated installation reference from the images sources listed below, and the images can be used to point over for upgrades, as well.

Image flavors

Kairos release process generates images based on official container images from the major popular Linux Distributions, If you can’t find your preferred distribution first check if we are already planning support for it, or create a new issue.

Below you can find a list of the images and their respective location on the registry.

  • The Core images does not contain any Kubernetes engine. Those images can be used as base for manual customization.
  • The Standard images contains k3s and the kairos provider which enables Kubernetes deployments, optionally with p2p.

Base images are tagged against specific upstream versions (e.g Ubuntu 20 LTS pins to Ubuntu 20:04, opensuse to opensuse leap 15.4, …).

Flavor/Variant Core (no k3s) Standard(k3s)
openSUSE based
Ubuntu based (rolling) **
Ubuntu based (22 LTS) **
Ubuntu based (20 LTS) **
Alpine Linux based (openSUSE kernel)
Alpine Linux based (Ubuntu kernel)
openSUSE based (RaspberryPi 3 and 4, arm64)
Alpine Linux based (RaspberryPi 3 and 4, arm64)

Versioning policy

Kairos follows Semantic Versioning and our releases versioning signal changes regarding the Kairos components, not changes to the OS, and underlaying packages versions. Flavors are pinned to specific upstream OS branches (e.g. opensuse to leap 15.4) and major version bumps would be reflected by either having new flavors in our build matrix or having specific releases to follow upstream with regard to minor version bumps (e.g. leap 15.3 and leap 15.4).


  • We support only the latest release branch with patch releases.
  • Patch releases ( e.g. 1.1.x ) follows a weekly release cadence, if needed, exceptions made for highly impacting bugs in Kairos itself or at the OS layer (e.g. High scored CVEs).
  • Minor releases follows a monthly cadence and are expected to bring enhancements, with planned releases.
  • Major releases signal a new a set of advanced features, or significant changes to the codebase. In-place upgrade from old to new major release branch is not always guaranteed, however we strive for compatibility among versions.

Release changelog

Our changelog is published as part of the release process: it contains all the changeset, highlights and release notes that are pertinent to the release.

We strongly recommend to check every release changelog before running any upgrade, or while building your customized version of Kairos.

Release changelogs are available for Kairos core and for each component. Here you can find a list of the components that are part of a Kairos release and their respective release page with changelogs.

Project Release page
Kairos core
Kairos provider (k3s support)

Last modified December 7, 2022: :book: Docs enhancements pt2 (#543) (808feef)