Project Photon OS

Photon OS is a Linux based, open source, security-hardened, enterprise grade appliance operating system that is purpose built for Cloud and Edge applications.

Virtual Machines and Bare Metal

Run apps on bare metal, on hypervisors like VMware ESXi, or in the public cloud

Containers and Kubernetes

Use as a secure, stand-alone container host, or build cloud-scale Kubernetes nodes and clusters

Local and Remote Development

Use Photon OS as a Development Environment for building modern applications

Download Photon OS

Download local images for x86, ARM64 and Raspberry Pi, or use Cloud images for environments like AWS, GCE, Azure, along with checksums and previous releases.

ISO Images

Contains everything needed to install. Choose between a minimal or a full installation to suit your deployment needs. Photon can be installed from ISO directly, or can be used with PXE/kickstart environments for automated installations

OVA Appliance

Portable, ready-to-go virtual environment. Photon OS Open Virtual Appliance packages include a highly sanitized and optimized kernel and packages to streamline and standardize appliance deployments.


Lightweight Container Host

Photon OS delivers just enough of a Linux operating system to efficiently run containers on VMware vSphere, Microsoft Azure, Google Compute Engine, and Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud

Read The Docs
Secure By Default

Using the recommendations of the Kernel Self-Protection Project (KSPP), the Photon OS Linux Kernel is secure from the start. Packages are built with hardened security flags and can be easily updated and verified.

Read The Docs
Real Time Kernel Support

Photon OS provides a performant stack for deployments like Virtual Radio Access Network applications that demand real time capabilities and ultra-low latency response

Read The Docs


The Photon project team welcomes contributions from the community. If you would like to contribute code and you have not signed our Contributor License Agreement (CLA), our CLA-bot will walk you through the process and update the issue when you open a Pull Request.

Team Photon

Photon OS is released as open source software by an epic team of contributors.

Sharath George


Anish Swaminathan


Vasavi Sirnapalli


Alexey Makhalov


Srivatsa Bhat


Oliver Kurth


Siju Maliakkal


Susant Sahani


Michelle Wang


Tapas Kundu


Harinadh Dommaraju


Ajay Kaher


Michael Roy

Website + Docs

Carlos Murillo

Website Graphics

Kishan Malur

Product Manager


The ISO and OVA images are distributed under the VMware Photon OS EULA. Open source license information may be found the in Photon OS Open Source License file.


Photon OS is released as open source software and provides community support through our GitHub project page. If you encounter an issue or have a question, feel free to reach out on the GitHub issues page for Photon OS.

Get Started

See the documentation to get started with Photon OS