What is Solaris Express

I can see quite a few visitors come to my blog asking this question shown in the title of this post. I believe this blog entry will be useful specifically for those of you who only started getting to know Solaris.

Solaris Express is the first publicly available part of the new concept of Sun Microsystems, called Sun Software Express Program. The idea is to give an early public access to the latest software from Sun.

Solaris Express is the latest build of Solaris OS available for download, which includes all the latest features and changes. By participating in Solaris Express program, you get a chance to download the latest Solaris OS builds as they arrive, which allows you to obtain the necessary skills to use all the latest and greatest Solaris features before they are made a part of the next official Solaris release or update.

All you have to do to access Solaris Express is to get an account for Sun Download Center. For non-commercial use, Solaris Express is completely free. You don’t get any support with it though.

Commercial support for Solaris Express

If you plan on using Solaris commercially, the annual subscription will cost you 99$.

Your subscription will avail the following additional features to you:

  • access to the Solaris Express Community website
  • a license for a commercial use of your Solaris Express build
  • access to bug reports and updates
  • ability to submit bugs
  • get a feature forecast for the Solaris Express builds to follow
  • et a detailed roadmap of Solaris Express development

The links I provide below should help you learn more about Solaris Express:


  1. Jesper Nielsen says:

    Solaris Express seems to have disappeared. I can only find references to OpenSolaris, my understanding was that Express was a hybrid between Open and (real) Solaris… Will it be back or has it been discontinued for good?

    • Hi Jesper, yes Solaris Express (lately SXDE – Solaris Express Developer Edition) program was discontinued in January 2010, so it’s only OpenSolaris for now if you’re after the latest changes in the OS.

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