Thursday Nov 01, 2007

Project Indiana on ESX

While I didn't achieve my goal of getting Sun Ray1 up on the "OpenSolaris Developer Preview" (aka Project Indiana) I did get it running on VMWare ESX.  In fact, I built it on my Mac using VMWare Fusion, then used VMWare Converter to import into ESX.

 Indiana as viewed through the ESX VIC Console

Not many caveats with Fusion or ESX.  But there are a few:

  1. Choose Solaris 10 64 bit as your OS Type
  2. Tell VMWare to allocate the whole disk ahead of time.  Installs much quicker
  3. Choose Bridged Networking
  4. Of course, point your CD-ROM Drive at the in-preview.iso
  5. DO NOT INSTALL VMWare-Tools.  You've been warned.  If you do, you will have to ssh into the box and uninstall them. 

Once in, you might want to used a fixed IP and other fixed network settings.  To do this you are going to have to disable Network Auto-Magic Mode.  This is simple to do, from a terminal as root do the following:

# svcadm disable svc:/network/physical:nwam
# svcadm enable svc:/network/physical:default

I didn't have much luck using the Network Settings applet to config everything correctly2, at least how I view it as correctly.  In fact the only things I think it got right was /etc/netmasks, /etc/defaultrouter, and /etc/resolv.conf

The following files needed to be changed by hand:  /etc/hosts, /etc/hostname.e1000g0, /etc/nsswitch.conf

For /etc/hosts I had to insert the hostname followed by the fixed IP, remove the hostname from the loopback address and add  localhost to the loopback line.

For /etc/hostname.e1000g0 I replaced the IP address with the hostname.

For /etc/resolve.conf I had to add dns to the hosts line

That's about it.  The installer is super cool, and I really (really!) love the "Live CD". 

Updates in the future when I get Sun Ray up on it. (See below)

1 Project Indiana uses Xorg's X Server and does not include Sun's Xsun X Server.  Today Sun Ray relies on Xsun.  While we have a prototype based on Xorg, pkgadd is broken in Project Indiana and it is impossible to install Sun Ray Server without it.  Well maybe not impossible, but extremely painful.

2 I based my network configuration based on the requirements of Sun Ray Servers utadm command.  If I didn't make the changes I did, utadm would have failed.

Saturday Feb 10, 2007

A few problems with B56 under SPARC w/ Sun Ray

dtlogin gets hung  (will result in 26 OSD icon).  Trussing out the parent dtlogin process just hangs after one sleep so there is something seriously wrong here.  Doesn't seem to affect CAM session at all though (no matter what, they will launch).  Once it gets to this point you have to kill (or pkill) -9 the dtlogin process then issue a /usr/dt/bin/dtlogin start.  Then all new session will come up.  Weird. 

/var/adm/messsages has these cde-login errors:

svc.startd[7]: [ID 122153 daemon.warning] svc:/application/graphical-login/cde-login:default: Method or service exit timed out.  Killing contract 75.
svc.startd[7]: [ID 748625 daemon.error] application/graphical-login/cde-login:default failed: transitioned to maintenance (see 'svcs -xv' for details)

The service log pretty much says the same thing.  Can't figure this one out. 

Xlib errors when the screen saver password screen pops up...complaining about missing the XFree86-Misc extension.  But works fine (i.e. locks and unlocks) otherwise.  I wonder if this version of gnome-screensaver is not Xsun aware?  Dunno.

Middle mouse click in Firefox will result in a "home" command.  Thought it would invoke the scroll function.  Might be just user error.  But it does do the scroll function under an RDP session from the same Sun Ray.

Encryption does not work (known problem since the build 40-ish).  Fixed in the next Sun Ray Server patch.

Setting up Sun Ray Windows Connector you need to point libutcrypto to /usr/sfw/lib/ when running uttscadm -c (it asks for 0.9.7).  Works fine once you do that.  I need to file a RFE so it asks for the location of since that's a symlink to what ever version you have installed.

On a positive note, the fonts look awesome on Sun Ray.  Printing is exceptionally quick to a printer  locally attached to a Sun Ray.

LOVING that flash, acrobat, and Helix plugins are there by default.

I love the wallpaper, even though it takes forever to load.  Most likely cause for the slow down is whatever routine makes the thumbnails.  Need to take a page from MS Windows there and don't display the graphic until a user clicks on it to see what it looks like.

Need to write an entry on how I want a Niagara based "deskside"server model.  While I love the 1U and 2U form factors, the noise is too much to bear for most home based offices.  The deskside models (like my V250) really quiet things down when you're working next to the box. I guess I don't need to do an entry anymore now.

 Getting late, going to bed

Updated @ 12:22 AM PST Feb 11 2007

Jumping to Nevada

I loved Nevada so much on my U40, I've moved my main Sun Ray Server (V250) over to it.  Can still boot off the other disk if I need to try things out on a "supported" OS.

# uname -a
SunOS tequila 5.11 snv_56 sun4u sparc SUNW,Sun-Fire-V250

Friday Jan 26, 2007

Nevada Rocks

Sure...I am biased.

But let me extend this challenge to you.  Download the latest build of Nevada.  Give it a spin for a week.  Let me know what didn't work for you.  From Star/OpenOffice to Firefox, you name it.

I'm having such a blast.  Oh yeah, I needed Windows XP a few times this last week.  I am working for a customer who is having problems with their SunPCiIII cards which are their terminal servers.  Turns out they have some corrupt diskimages due to some power failures.

First problem.  Their VPN client is Windows XP only.  No Windows XP here.  Vista 64 and the rest Solaris.

Second problem.  I needed to clone the drives.  Need to control the SunPCi cards graphically.

Funny thing with the SunPCi cards.  You can set them to boot when the Solars OS boots, but they need to display somewhere.  So Sun came up with method to use VNC to let them display to.  The only problem with that is Sun decided to change VNC "just a tad" to accomplish this.  So while we provide the source code, I just don't have all the developer tools available to compile under Windows.  Under Solaris?  Check.  No prob.  Sun Studio can be had for free

So while the following is kludgey, it worked really well.  I rebuilt two MS2K3 terminal servers in the time it took to FTP an 9 GB diskimage (OK 2 more minutes for NewSID)

So moral of the story:  Win4Solaris to the rescue!  Win4Solaris for the VPN.  VNC to Solaris.  From Solaris, run the "special" version of VNC to get to the display of the SunPCiIII cards.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present a desktop on a desktop on desktop on a desktop on a desktop.  Or what I like to call D5.




My name is Craig Bender aka ThinGuy. I'm a Principal Software Developer for Oracle's Virtual Desktop Engineering group.

I architect and evangelize the use of Oracle's Desktop technology including Sun Ray, Secure Global Desktop, and Oracle VDI.


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