Embedded Apprentice Linux Engineer

Are you an Embedded Engineer who is transitioning to using Linux? Attend seminars on how to start with using Linux for Embedded Applications. The Embedded Apprentice Linux Engineer program provides a place at existing Embedded conferences where you can get your questions answered.

Do you have Embedded Linux questions? We have answers!

Embedded Apprentice Linux Engineer Logo
Embedded Apprentice Linux Engineer (E-ALE) is nominally a series of 8-9 seminars over 2-3 days at existing Embedded Linux conferences. Take as many or few as you want to. The seminars will each represent a key topic relevant to Engineers new to Embedded Linux. Each seminar first gives lecture or presentation on one subject, followed by lab time to practice the relevant learned skills (most often on real embedded HW). Each seminar will be taught by a professional Embedded Linux Instructor with years of practical experience.

Please be aware that some seminars have suggested prerequisites. Later seminars will assume you have the knowledge from the earlier prerequisite seminar.

Electronic Parts

No question is too simple.

At professional conferences it can sometimes be embarrassing to ask what seem like simple questions. The reality is that everyone had to start somewhere. Let us help fill in any holes in your existing knowledge. All levels of experience welcome.
Raspberry Pi

Maker to Professional

Everyone comes with their own reason to learn Embedded Linux; from maker to Professional Engineer. However the basics are all the same. Embedded linux essentials are the same, or at least highly similar across all platforms and architectures.
Minnow Boards


Do you have specific questions about a particular CPU architecture or brand of board? One of our instructors probably has deep experience on that platform, or in some cases actually helped build the board in question. Come and ask questions and we’ll point you in the right direction.

Can't I just learn this stuff online?

Of course, you can learn online! There are lots of great online resources available around on the Web.

However, not everyone learns in the same way. Some people like to learn in-person from an instructor who has already been-there and done-that; someone who can answer your immediate questions or at least point you in the right direction.

At this time, E-ALE is in-person classes only.

We don’t offer these seminars online.

But what if I want to try out things I learn on real Hardware?

We try to use real Embedded hardware in all our seminars. We have to tailor the embedded board and availability to the conference however. So although we have traditionally used the PocketBeagle+BaconBits board for most of our conferences, we are going to have to use the Raspberrypi platform at the upcoming Linux.conf.ca conference since that is the official LCA conference embedded platform this year. We will be using PocketBeagle+BaconBits for the other ALE sessions this year.

Please check each conference for embedded board specifics and the embedded daughter boards we are using to give attendees access to sensors as well as a number of inputs and outputs. The training is still free, but the purchase of one of our HW kits is required in order to do the in class labs. We sell the kits as close to cost as we can so as not to lose any money.

What do I need to know beforehand? What do I bring to class?

What am I expected to know beforehand?

We make assumptions about attendees existing skills in the E-ALE seminars:

  • You are comfortable using a command line interface
  • You can program and know C
  • You have some level of Linux userspace experience

These are not courses on "How to use Linux"


What should I bring to class?

Attendees can elect to use the computers which are in the classroom we will be using at University of Canterbury. However attendees are encouraged to bring their own laptop with the following requirements if they have one:

  • A minimum of a recent i5 processor
  • 8GB of RAM
  • Your plugin power supply (we will be compiling a lot)
  • At least 100GB of free disk space
  • Run "./check-requirements.sh EALE"

If your laptop doesn’t run Linux...

... please make sure you have a virtual machine program hypervisor available in order to install a Linux VM (for instance Virtual Box, or VMWare).


Get your computer ready for E-ALE seminars

We have a script which will set up your computer for E-ALE. Please run it before you come to the seminars.

You can find all the slides and code on the Course Materials site, or in github.

E-ALE is at more than one conference!


  March 5-8, 2020 Pasadena Convention Centre, California, USASCaLE is one of the longest running community Linux conferences in the world, this being it's 18th year running in the Los Angeles Region. Sadly due to cancellations by enough of our speakers, in part...

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ELCE 2019

ELCE 2019

October 28-30, 2019 Lyon Convention Centre, Lyon, France Embedded Linux Conference Europe (ELCE) is the premier vendor-neutral technical conference for companies and developers using Linux in embedded products. Now in its 13th year, the conference gathers user-space...

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ELC 2019

ELC 2019

August 21-23, 2019 Hilton San Diego Bayfront,San Diego, CA ELC is the premier vendor-neutral technical conference for companies and developers using Linux in embedded products. It will be held at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront, San Diego, CA. ELC E-ALE Survey Please...

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Upcoming Conferences where you’ll find E-ALE


E-ALE will be at Embedded Linux Conference Europe takes place October 28-30, 2019 in Lyon, France.


E-ALE will be at the 18th annual Southern California Linux Expo will take place on March. 5-8, 2020, at the Pasadena Convention Center.


E-ALE will be at Embedded Linux Conference North America takes place June 22-24, 2020 in Austin, Texas.

What is the License? Are the Seminars Recorded?

What is the License?

All our slides are licensed under CC BY-SA, and the code under GPL/MIT. Feel free to share or use this material however you see fit. The idea is to share all speaker slides and code on github.

Are there Recordings?

Recordings depend on the conference, but we’re trying to have all the seminars recorded and published to YouTube.

Who are the Instructors?

All of our E-ALE instructors are all either professional Instructors, or domain experts in the topics they’re sharing.

The opinions of our instructors are their own and do not necessarily reflect those of the ALE project.

Who is behind E-ALE?

Is E-ALE a company?

We are an open source project made up largely of community members and companies who want to help people get into Embedded Linux programming.

All the materials and instructor time is donated, and all the HW kits are priced as low as we can to cover costs.

Who started E-ALE?

A number of long-time Linux Engineers were standing around an established embedded Conference talking about how they had been hearing from attendees new to Embedded Linux that the existing talks were too advanced for people transitioning to Embedded Linux. And this crazy idea to provide low cost Embedded training at existing embedded conferences was born.

Surely E-ALE is selling something?

E-ALE operates as a non-profit. We only try to cover costs. The time and written materials used in E-ALE are all donated.

Certainly, all of our E-ALE instructors are also consultants with their own companies. Each of them would be happy to talk to you further about more paid training or contract work. However, that is up to you to ask them about it.

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