by September 6, 2005 0 comments

Sun Microsystems recently released Solaris 10, focusing mainly on high-end enterprise segments. It currently comes free of cost and is downloadable from The OS includes more than 600 new features, making it a secure and reliable OS. In this series we’ll explore Solaris 10, right from installation to deploying enterprise applications on it. Plus we will take an in-depth look at various aspects of administering your Solaris servers. 

Applies to: New Solaris users
USP: Hands on experience with Solaris 10
Primary Link: 
Google keywords: Solaris 10

So to start off, we look at installing and configuring our base Solaris 10 system on an Intel x86. In order to install Solaris 10, you need a P4 system with atleast 256 MB of RAM, a good display card and atleast 12 GB free disk. To connect the machine to the network, it is better to use commonly available (as against an exotic brand) NIC; else the card may not be detected by the OS.

Getting Solaris 10 
From the Sun website, select the platform and format you’d like the distribution for and click on the download button. We required x86 for the platform and DVD for the format. Then you’ll be asked to login. If you don’t have a login profile, create one. Now, download all the four zip files-‘’ where ‘X’ is a letter from ‘a’ to ‘d’. Each zip file is roughly 500 MB in size. After downloading them, unzip them into a single folder and run this command from your Windows command prompt.

C:\Solaris10> copy -b sol-10-b69-x86-v1.iso.a+sol-10-b69-x86-v1.iso.b+sol-10-b69-x86-v1.iso.c+sol-10-b69-x86-v1.iso.d sol-10-b69-x86-v1.iso 


We recommend using the first installation option, 
Solaris Interactive, if you are new to Solaris. But a power user can use the text-based installation, which is faster compared to the GUI version. In the text-based install, the F2 key is used to continue, F3 to go backwards and the space bar to select the items. 

This combines all the four files into a single ISO file. Use a DVD-burning software and write the image to a

Selecting the type of installation
Solaris 10 can be installed using either a GUI or a text-based interface like Linux. Its GUI is very easy to use, but you may find difficulties in its text-based installer. When you boot off the DVD, you’ll come to the ‘Install Type Selection’ menu, where you will see these four options: Solaris Interactive, Custom Jump Start, Solaris Interactive Text (Desktop Session), Solaris Interactive Text (Console Session). For a GUI installation with the Solaris Interactive type, press ‘1’ and hit Enter. If you want to install a custom Solaris system with base OS, select the second option. The other two options are meant for text-based installation for installing a Solaris Desktop or a console session. Once you’ve selected the option that you want, the installer will probe your hardware (like network cards and the display). The system may appear to be idle or even hung at this point -it takes a little while to finish. Once done, an X Window interface will start. From the list on screen now, select the language (English) and press Enter. This will bring you to the Solaris installation wizard.

Solaris installation wizard
This wizard will first acquire user information. On the first screen, you will see a summary of information about your system. Here click on Next. The wizard will then ask whether you want a
network on this machine. If you want it, select the ‘Networking’ option otherwise select ‘Non-Network’ and click on Next. Selecting the Network option will prompt the means of getting an IP address for your system-DHCP or manual. Select the one that suits your setup and click on Next. On the subsequent screen, enable IPv6
support if required. On the screen that follows, let’s select Kerberos for security of the system.

Adding Name Services
You need to configure ‘Name Services’ for the system so that it can lookup for requested paths before serving requests. This can either exist elsewhere on the network or on the Solaris system. You will be asked to configure Name Services such as NIS+, NIS, DNS and LDAP. Select DNS and provide a DNS name for your system. 

New features in Solaris 10
  • Improved security with Solaris Secure Execution and
    Process Right Management

  • Dynamic Tracing (DTrace) tool allows you to debug application in real-time

  • On the performance part, optimizations in the TCP stack boost network performance. Advancements in the file system enhance file system performance. On application side optimization has been done to improve Web and Java-based services

  • On data management front, they have enhanced the security on NFS V4 and included the new Solaris ZFS, which protects your data from corruption, and provides virtually unlimited scalability

  • It supports popular open-source applications and supports open standards such as UDDI, SOAP, WSDL, and XML. Plus the Solaris 10 can interoperate with both Linux and Microsoft Windows systems

  • You can deploy Solaris 10 on both SPARC and Intel platforms 

  • Solaris 10’s ‘Predictive Self Healing’ feature can automatically diagnose and recover from hardware and application faults and maximizes system uptime 

  • The OS allows you to utilize the system by enabling you to securely run multiple, software-isolated applications on a single system, this allows you to easily consolidate your servers

Enter ‘’. Now provide the IP address of this DNS server and click on Next.
Select time zone and additional packages Select the time zone and geographical location you’re in and click on Next. Set up a root password for your machine and proceed. Next you’ll see a screen with two options: ‘Reboot automatically after software installation?’ and ‘Eject additional CD/DVD additionally after Software Installation’. Select ‘Yes’ for both and press Next. Select the installation media as ‘CD/DVD’ and click on Next. Now, the wizard will let you select the packages to install. By default it installs the entire distribution. Select the one for your needs and press Next (we selected the Entire distribution option). Now, comes the disk-partitioning screen. Select the default and press Next. Accept the displayed license agreement and proceed further. Finally the wizard will ask you whether to upgrade an
existing Solaris 9 installation or perform a fresh install. Select the ‘Initial Install’ and press ‘Install Now’ button. You can now take a break and return to see your Solaris 10 system up and ready for further configuration.

Sun Java desktop
After the complete install, the system automatically reboots and launches the Sun Java desktop. Login as root with the password you set during installation. You will see graphical interface. This desktop can work in all sorts of productivity applications such as Word, PowerPoint and Excel. Plus it gives you mail and calendaring features. The desktop includes Mozilla as its Web browser and its access to the network is seamless. You can
access even Windows networks out of the box through its ‘Network Places’. Overall the
entire desktop gives you the look and feel of a Windows machine. 

Sanjay Majumder

No Comments so far

Jump into a conversation

No Comments Yet!

You can be the one to start a conversation.