Recommended Patchset for Solaris 10 – January 2016

Those of you still on Solaris 10 may want to download the latest Recommended Patchset for Solaris 10 which was published just last week, on 28th of January 2016.

There’s only four such patchsets a year and this is quite handy for rolling baselines when you plan to patch all of your Solaris 10 servers in a particular quarter.

While this patchset does not incluse ALL of the available security patches, it contains most critical ones to date.

From the README:

The Recommended OS Patchset Solaris 10 SPARC provides the minimum set of patches needed to address security and Sun Alert issues, and selected issues identified by Oracle Proactive Services and the Oracle Technical Support Center, for the Solaris 10 Operating System for sparc. The patches contained in this patchset are considered the most important and highly recommended patches for Solaris 10.

Solaris 10 patch return codes

Now that some of the systems I have to regularly patch are Solaris 10 ones, I have to get used to the new patch return codes which one can see when applying one of the Sun’s recommended patchsets. It’s similar to the Solaris 8/9 patchset installation codes, but there are more codes added to the list.

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Solaris 10 update 7 (5/09) release

Last week yet another update of Solaris 10 OS was released: Solaris 10u7.

What’s new in Solaris 10 update 7?

  • ZFS support when cloning a Solaris zone – quite a useful tool for someone who always copied the files of Solaris zones. I personally did similar cloning myself, but it’s handy that now ZFS cloning is supported in the zoneadm command itself.
  • IPsec – SMF services – Service Management Framework now manages all the necessary IPsec functionality with traditionally thorough approach: interface consistency, restarting anf fault-tracking are all provided. SMF services for IPsec are: ipsec/policy, ipsec/ike, ipsec/manual-key and ipsec/ipsecalgs.
  • SunSSH with OpenSSL PKCS#11 Engine support – this opens way for more optimal use of hardware crypto accelerators.
  • iSCSI Target improvements – greatly improved iSNS (Internet Storage Name Service) support, updates for improved interoperability. Most common iSCSI initiators are now supported
  • NetXen 10-GigE driver – a new NIC driver called ntxn will make it possible to use 10-Gigabit cards on your x86 platform
  • New locale support – greetings go to Kazakhstan and Ukraine which are now fully supported

This isn’t a full list of improvements, so if you’re interested in all the details – please read the official What’s New in Solaris 10 update 7 doc.

Solaris 10 u7 screenshots gallery

I’ve uploaded a few screenshots for you, nothing revolutionary but will still give you an idea if you have never seen Solaris 10 before:

See also:

What’s new in Solaris 10?

Here are just some of the revolutionary changes introduced in Solaris 10:

DTrace – dynamic tracing

DTrace allows you to dynamically trace anything and everything in real time. You can observe processes both in userland and kernel space, watch them as closely as you want and this all with virtually no performance impact. This allows DTrace to be used on a production system being absolutely sure it’s not going to considerably slow the system down or crash it.
I think it’s one of the best Solaris 10 innovations – all the administrators and developers will like it.

ZFS file system (zettabyte file system)

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Be careful with Jumpstart miniroot

Last few days I’m working on debugging the Solaris 10 Jumpstart install for some old desktops (Ultra 10, Ultra 60).

Among few well-known problems, I’ve noticed such an anomaly: the whole Jumpstart session happens just fine, all the packages are installed, but at the very end I see the errors and the installation fails:

SUNWspnego.......................done.    1.30 Mbytes remaining.
SUNWsra..........................done.    1.18 Mbytes remaining.
SUNWsrh..........................done.    1.00 Mbytes remaining.

Completed software installation
Solaris 10 software installation succeeded
Customizing system files

- Mount points table (/etc/vfstab)
- Unselected disk mount points (/var/sadm/system/data/vfstab.unselected)
- Network host addresses (/etc/hosts)

ERROR: Could not open file (/etc/hosts)
ERROR: Could not set up the remote host file (/etc/hosts)
ERROR: System installation failed

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Did you know: root shell in Solaris 10

As you know, traditionally with older Solaris versions you had to leave /sbin/sh as the default root shell. In Solaris 8 and 9, you’re supposed to do this because all the libraries for dynamic linking are in /usr/lib, which could well be on a separate /usr filesystem. This filesystem may not be accessible during the maintenance boot, and therefore it is regarded as a very bad practice to change the root shell.

To make sure the superuser is always going to be able to log in, you have a /sbin/sh assigned to root, and it’s a statically built binary, so it doesn’t need any of the external libraries:

solaris$ file /sbin/sh
/sbin/sh:       ELF 32-bit MSB executable SPARC Version 1, statically linked, stripped
solaris$ ldd /sbin/sh
ldd: /sbin/sh: file is not a dynamic executable or shared object

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