ZFS and DTrace make management easy

Shoji Haraguchi

Managing a multiboot environment

 Using ZFS to store each BE made it easy to replicate and manage BEs. The new beadm(1M) command is provided to create BEs and manage multiboot environments.

# beadm create BEbackup

 By simply typing the above command line, a snapshot of the active BE is created and a clone, named BEbackup, is created for the active BE. The entire process finishes in seconds.

 The created BEbackup can be selected from the GRUB startup menu when you reboot your BE. When you create copies of a BE before making changes in your system configuration (such as adding packages or drivers), they can serve as backup for your system boot configuration.

 BEs can be created on the storage pool with no limit. It is easy to remove or rename a non-active BE.

 Although the traditional Solaris Live Upgrade also allows the user to duplicate and manage BEs, the new BE management facilities consume much less disk space and are much faster. So, it's very convenient!

Updates made easy

 OpenSolaris ensures easy upgrade installation. With OpenSolaris 2008.05, you can select your desired packages from an IPS repository and update them using the IPS we introduced in our last article of the series - 3: Package management of OpenSolaris ( Alternatively, you can upgrade all installed packages at the same time to the latest available version using the following simple command.

# pkg image-update

 The pkg image-update creates a backup of a BE and upgrades that backup. At the next boot, "opensolaris-1" will be added to the GRUB menu. By booting this BE, the update is enabled. You can be revert the BE to the pre-upgrade state if the upgrade does not work as intended by selecting "OpenSolaris2008.05" from the GRUB menu.

 The IPS repositories at are scheduled to be updated every two weeks. This feature is useful for periodical system updates.

Sun Microsystems, Inc.
An OpenSolaris evangelist. I am a member of the Solaris Platform & Security Group and working as a technical program manager. I serve as a technical point of contact for the Solaris Hardware Partners (SHWP) and have been engaging in evangelistic activities to promote OpenSolaris since last fall.

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