Advantages of Solaris and OpenSolaris over Linux
By George Trujillo on Dec 03, 2008
Why use OpenSolaris if I already have Linux?
- OpenSolaris has a very welcoming community where novice and beginners can easily find help. Community members are very co-operative and encouraging.
- As engineers, our work is to __MAKE__ technology more "accessible" and "easy to use" and not look for technologies which __ARE__ "accessible" and "easy to use". OpenSolaris has made a big switch from being a server OS to Desktop OS and has very cool technologies built into it, but it might not be as easy to use as other OSes like Linux or Windows. And thus its an opportunity for the developers to work towards __MAKING__ these cool stuff of OpenSolaris more "accessible" and "easy to use" for general public.
- Linux as a Desktop OS is quite mature and its difficult for a beginner to make a drastic difference in the community. OpenSolaris on the other hand is on its way to become a OS which would work perfectly out-of-the-box! So any help in this would be appreciated by the community.
Solaris versus Red Hat
Advantages of Solaris.
- Solairs is free. Both Regular Solaris and OpenSolaris
- Solaris with support is often less expensive than Red Hat with support on the same hardware.
- Linux sometimes is faster than Solaris when running on the platform for which it was originally designed: A single 32-bit x86 CPU PC. When you get to multiple CPUs, multiple cores, etc. Solaris will usually be better. Even on the original Linux target platform, Solaris usually wins the speed battle.
- Solaris 10 is secure and certified as secure.
- If you have a problem with a part of Linux other than the kernel, you may end up at the short end of the "we don't support that particular add-on, but we're sending a request out to the community and we hope that the grad student who developed it three years ago will see it and respond" stick from your Linux vendor. With Solaris you contact Sun and we fix it.
- ZFS is definitely something database people want. Faster and more reliable storage makes for better databases.
- Dtrace is something database people want. If their production system is underperforming, being able to diagnose what's going on without having to shut it down is a good thing.
- Containers are of interest to database people. Instead of needing to buy separate systems for their production, test, and development database environments they can put them in separate containers on one system.
- Solaris is and has been tested in the most rigorous of enterprise environments.
- OpenSolaris is ahead of Linux for an obvious reason, Linux is developed by lots of [smart] people on commodity hardware. Solaris is developed on specialized hardware, unless you know lots of people who have a system with >200 cpu and 2TB memory and 1PTbyte File system. So yes Solaris is better on big iron and Linux is good on small hardware.
Always about trade-offs, but since 2yr the hardware is moving up fast (i.e quad-core CPU's and 16core systems with far more underway by intel and AMD, 1.5TBdisks are cheap, 16GB on a small system is common, .. 10Gbit/sec appearing soon on most system boards, ... ). As you know rewriting software is not easy, so Linux is facing a lot of issues, which
Solaris has solved years ago. Taking advantage of this large hardware will not be easy from the software side either, but then Solaris has Zones and Containers to consolidate this and divide a large box in an efficient way.
Very powerful features in Solaris for databases and application servers
- IPS make installation/maintain/update very easy.
- ZFS snapshot/rollback your config/data/tables, add/remove your storage space.
- Zones isolate your apps. clone your apps.
- SMF make your apps very reliable.
- DTrace observe every thing, from the app to the kernel.
Great links on advantages of running Solaris
Working With Multiple Boot Environments on the OpenSolaris OS
Some of these Sun Links are only available on Sun Internal Network.
Solaris Developer Center: http://developers.sun.com/solaris/index.jsp
Learning (New2Solaris): http://developers.sun.com/solaris/learning/new2/index.jsp
Solaris Developer site http://devtools.sfbay/editorial_content/
Even though this pertains to the LDAP Diretory Server here is an example of why Solaris is a better OS: