RTA-VRTE – AUTOSAR platform software framework for vehicle computer

Operating system, basic software, hypervisor, and security elements based on AUTOSAR Classic and Adaptive

Vehicle computers with microprocessors are a central component of the future E/E architectures for networked and automated driving. The prerequisite for this is a secure and reliable platform software framework. This allows vehicle manufacturers and service providers to concentrate on functionality.

A platform software framework must support the following functionalities:

  • Flexible and efficient integration of cross-domain functions with different safety requirements
  • Clear separation of software  from different suppliers on one ECU
  • Continuous secure update capability over the entire vehicle life-cycle in the field
  • Support of new business models in software and services

But nevertheless the classic automotive requirement have to be fulfilled:

  • Highest demands for safety and security
  • Real-time capability, even after many software updates (freedom from interference)
  • Cost efficiency
  • Maintainability of vehicle software over long life time

To master this challenges ETAS offers the RTA-VRTE (Vehicle Runtime Environment) based on AUTOSAR. Developed together with the Bosch Group this basic software framework contains operating system, AUTOSAR adaptive basic software, hypervisor, safety and security elements. In addition ETAS offers services, like consulting, training and service hotline as well as development tools like the ISOLAR family.

The VRTE is built on Service Oriented Architecture (SOA)-principles. This allows the integration of software building blocks (services) from different suppliers on one ECU. A hypervisor makes it possible to separate functionality with different safety levels up to ASIL D and enables continuous secure software updates over the air.


  • OEM and Tier 1 can concentrate on their core business based on a reliable, AUTOSAR Adaptive conformant software framework also used in Bosch vehicle computers
  • Early Access Program, including the VRTE software, software development tools, training and consulting allows fast knowledge ramp-up by quick implementation and testing of new E/E architectures and AUTOSAR Adaptive applications.
  • Customer specific, scalable solution for every automotive OEM and software supplier
  • Services across the whole live cycle of the ECU like integration support, customer specific adjustments, update and upgrade management

Areas of application

Suitable for all powerful, microprocessor-based vehicle computers for e.g. HAD/ADAS and connectivity applications with the following requirements:

  • AUTOSAR Adaptive architectures
  • Software from various suppliers and safety classes on one control unit
  • Software updates over-the-air
  • Safety critical systems up to ASIL-D
  • Vehicle independent software (Ap Store)
  • Automotive cyber-security requirements

The RTA-VRTE – developed together with the Bosch Group – combines automotive software know-how across all domains with expertise in E/E architecture, complex real-time software, IoT, and automotive hardware (in-vehicle and backend). RTA-VRTE offers functional safety, real-time behavior and reliability under automotive requirements, combined with cyber-security.

ETAS RTA-VRTE – Runtime Environment for Vehicle Computer



An important part of a Basic Software Framework for automotive vehicle Computer is the Hypervisor. It ensures that functions from various sources can run on the same device without influencing each other. This means that only the changed areas need to be considered during tests. In addition, this separation ensures that ECUs are harder to attack.

Customers should be able to upgrade and update software-controlled vehicle functions without any safety or security concerns. This presupposes a strict separation between individual software functions with a hypervisor designed for the necessities of automotive industry.

The hypervisor creates multiple virtual machines for non-AUTOSAR, AUTOSAR Classic and AUTOSAR Adaptive applications with different safety levels on the same CPU.

Thanks to intelligent inter-core communication and strict encapsulation, it is possible to develop software-controlled functions independently of each other and – including for vehicles already owned by customers – modify them at any time without the need for time-consuming revalidation of the overall system. In addition the hypervisor ensures that the different functions don’t influence each other regarding the time behaviour (freedom from interference).

Service Oriented Architecture (SOA)

In service-oriented architectures (SOA), application components provide services through a communication protocol over a network. A service comprises a stand-alone unit of functionality available only via a formally defined interface. A service can be accessed remotely, acted upon and updated independently. The function provided by a service is in the general case the integration of distributed, separately maintained and deployed software components.