GitHub Introduces Arm64 Runners for Enhanced Performance and Sustainability

GitHub Introduces Arm64 Runners for Enhanced Performance and Sustainability

GitHub has announced the introduction of ArmⓇ-based Linux and Windows runners for GitHub Actions, significantly enhancing the platform’s performance and sustainability, according to The GitHub Blog. This addition aims to provide developers with a more efficient and cost-effective way to build and deploy applications.

Arm64 Runners: A New Era for GitHub Actions

The newly introduced Arm64 runners are designed to offer substantial improvements in power, performance, and sustainability. These runners, managed by GitHub with images built by Arm, provide a more efficient compute layer, helping developers optimize their compute costs and reduce their carbon footprint. Notably, these runners are priced at 37% less than the x64 Linux and Windows runners.

Developers across various industries, from gaming to embedded mobile development, can now leverage the performance benefits of Arm-based hardware hosted by GitHub. This development eliminates the need for self-hosting or using QEMU virtualization, which is slower than running natively.

GitHub and Arm: A Collaborative Effort

GitHub has partnered with Arm to deliver Ubuntu and Windows VM images, ensuring a seamless transition for developers to start building on Arm. The Ubuntu 22.04 image comes with a comprehensive set of tools, with plans to expand these tools for the Windows image and introduce a new Ubuntu 24.04 image.


This collaboration is part of GitHub’s broader strategy to partner with leading technology providers, aiming to offer a diverse range of images for customers to build on. This initiative follows the launch of GPU runners equipped with NVIDIA-built images in April, designed to integrate MLOps practices into GitHub Actions.

Bhumik Patel, Director of Software Ecosystem Development at Arm, emphasized the importance of this partnership in advancing sustainable computing. “The availability of Arm-hosted runners marks an important step toward more sustainable computing by enabling software developers with advanced CI/CD capabilities to develop the power-efficient and versatile Arm architecture for various projects,” he said.

Sustainability on GitHub Actions

GitHub’s commitment to sustainability is further reinforced by the introduction of these new Arm-hosted runners. Arm-based servers in the cloud have demonstrated a 30-40% reduction in power usage for widely deployed workloads, contributing significantly to lowering carbon emissions. Developers can measure the energy consumption of their GitHub Actions workflow runs using tools like the Eco-CI Energy Estimation tool.

Getting Started with Arm-hosted Runners

These runners are available for GitHub Team and Enterprise Cloud customers, with plans to extend availability to open source projects by the end of the year. Developers can start using these runners by creating an Arm runner in their organization or enterprise and updating the runs-on syntax in their GitHub Actions workflow file. Detailed setup instructions and pricing information are available in GitHub’s public documentation.

Image source: Shutterstock

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