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Open-source Banking and Cryptocurrency ATMs

We are interested in developing open-source bank atms (automated teller machines). We are a group of linux and IT enthusiasts. Our goal is to have linux or another open-source operating system based atms developed before the 2016 deadline when microsoft will stop supporting embedded xp, which is currently running the atms. We are a global team. We collaborate from all over the world and at all hours. We want the financial industry to know there are alternatives to windows based systems. We can accomplish our goals through a worldwide effort and help from donators.

Open-source means the technology can be studied, customized and used by anyone for any purpose. Open-source allows for advancement of the technology at a fraction of the price should a single entity try to develop something similar. Open-source can give a client more choices and alternative solutions. Open-source can give a client more and-or better security measures. Open-source can give a client better and more functionality or uses with the same system. And finally open-source gives the client more control over their system. Upgrade whenever you want, according to your needs, your time table. Upgrade exactly the piece or pieces you want. Add only the piece or pieces of technology you want. Customize exactly the way you want it customized. Looking for a consultant? You have the whole world.

24 hours and 7days a week banking service can be provided to all branches. With video communication capability with every ATM, a bank can have one branch either in another time zone or a busy populous city that is operating 24/7, provide person to person banking services to all ATMs via video. The video communication capability would be an optional service on all ATMs.

Open source technology





tiny core



Linux is also finding some reception in the ATM marketplace. An example of this is Banrisul, the largest bank in the south of Brazil, which has replaced the MS-DOS operating systems in its ATMs with Linux. Banco do Brasil is also migrating ATMs to Linux. Indian-based Vortex Engineering is Manufacturing ATM's which operates only with Linux.

Real-Time Operating Systems (RTOS)


Common application layer transaction protocols

Diebold 91x (911 or 912)


Newer protocols such as IFX have yet to find wide acceptance by transaction processors

WOSA/XFS, now known as CEN XFS (or simply XFS), provides a common API for accessing and manipulating the various devices of an ATM. J/XFS

is a Java implementation of the CEN XFS API.

With the onset of Windows operating systems and XFS on ATM's, the software applications have the ability to become more intelligent. This has created a new breed of ATM applications commonly referred to as programmable applications. These types of applications allows for an entirely new host of applications in which the ATM terminal can do more than only communicate with the ATM switch. It is now empowered to connected to other content servers and video banking systems.

Notable ATM software that operates on XFS platforms include Triton PRISM, Diebold Agilis EmPower, NCR APTRA Edge, Absolute Systems AbsoluteINTERACT, KAL Kalignite Software Platform, Phoenix Interactive VISTAatm, Wincor Nixdorf ProTopas and Euronet EFTS.

Network protocols

Linux atm

Most ATMs are connected to interbank networks, enabling people to withdraw and deposit money from machines not belonging to the bank where they have their accounts or in the countries where their accounts are held (enabling cash withdrawals in local currency). Some examples of interbank networks include NYCE, PULSE, PLUS, Cirrus, AFFN, Interac, Interswitch, STAR, LINK, MegaLink and BancNet.

ATMs rely on authorisation of a financial transaction by the card issuer or other authorising institution via the communications network. This is often performed through an ISO 8583 messaging system.

Many banks charge ATM usage fees. In some cases, these fees are charged solely to users who are not customers of the bank where the ATM is installed; in other cases, they apply to all users.

In order to allow a more diverse range of devices to attach to their networks, some interbank networks have passed rules expanding the definition of an ATM to be a terminal that either has the vault within its footprint or utilises the vault or cash drawer within the merchant establishment, which allows for the use of a scrip cash dispenser.

ATMs typically connect directly to their host or ATM Controller via either ADSL or dial-up modem over a telephone line or directly via a leased line. Leased lines are preferable to plain old telephone service (POTS) lines because they require less time to establish a connection. Less-trafficked machines will usually rely on a dial-up modem on a POTS line rather than using a leased line, since a leased line may be comparatively more expensive to operate versus a POTS line. That dilemma may be solved as high-speed Internet VPN connections become more ubiquitous. Common lower-level layer communication protocols used by ATMs to communicate back to the bank include SNA over SDLC, TC500 over Async, X.25, and TCP/IP over Ethernet.

In addition to methods employed for transaction security and secrecy, all communications traffic between the ATM and the Transaction Processor may also be encrypted via methods such as SSL.

An ATM is typically made up of the following devices:

CPU (to control the user interface and transaction devices)

Magnetic or chip card reader (to identify the customer)

PIN pad EEP4 (similar in layout to a touch tone or calculator keypad), manufactured as part of a secure enclosure

Secure cryptoprocessor, generally within a secure enclosure

Display (used by the customer for performing the transaction)

Function key buttons (usually close to the display) or a touchscreen (used to select the various aspects of the transaction)

Record printer (to provide the customer with a record of the transaction)

Cash cartridge

Cash handling mechanism

Vault (to store the parts of the machinery requiring restricted access)

Housing (for aesthetics and to attach signage to)

Sensors and indicators


The vault of an ATM is within the footprint of the device itself and is where items of value are kept. Scrip cash dispensers do not incorporate a vault.

Mechanisms found inside the vault may include:

Dispensing mechanism (to provide cash or other items of value)

Deposit mechanism including a check processing module and bulk note acceptor (to allow the customer to make deposits)

Security sensors (magnetic, thermal, seismic, gas)

Locks (to ensure controlled access to the contents of the vault)

Journaling systems; many are electronic (a sealed flash memory device based on in-house standards) or a solid-state device (an actual printer) which accrues all records of activity including access timestamps, number of notes dispensed, etc. This is considered sensitive data and is secured in similar fashion to the cash as it is a similar liability.


Alternative Uses of ATMs