Device Allocation in OpenSolaris 2008.11

I've been having problems mounting removable media when Trusted Extensions is enabled in the latest OpenSolaris release, so I took a closer look at the shell script /etc/security/lib/disk_clean. This file handles mounting and unmounting of cdrom and rmdisk devices. There have been some subtle changes in the hal(5) framework which affect the script. Here is a copy of an updated version that works much better.

There are still a few other issues which I don't completely understand. The script invokes zenity(1) to pop up a few dialogs. With the latest version of GNOME (2.24) these dialogs are going behind the Device Manager, so you probably won't be aware of them unless you notice something flashing in the GNOME panel. The Device Manager will appear to hang until you respond to these dialogs (which you can't see). So move the Device Manager to one of the corners of your desktop before allocating a device, and look for these dialog windows when the program appears to hang. I tried fixing this with the System->Preferences->Windows menu, but that doesn't work for me.

Another problem is that all of the devices come up in the maintenance state when the system is booted, and must be reset via the Administration->Revoke item in the Device Manager. Devices are supposed to be reset to Available when the system is booted.

 I'm also seeing an occasional problem with cdrom0 being assigned to the wrong controller number in /etc/security/device_maps. If cdrom0 allocation isn't working for you, try this:

# eject cdrom

This comand will emit the full pathname for the cdrom device. It should match one of the devices in the Device Map, which you can view by picking the Administration->Properties item when cdrom0 is selected. If the controller number is wrong, either fix it in this dialog (which is tedious) or edit the underlying device_maps file.

One final issue is that the icons for the devices are missing from the repository, so the GUI has little blobs where the icons should appear. As a workaround, you can get the missing icons for this tar file, and extract it into /usr/share.

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This blog explores some of the security features of Oracle Solaris. In particular, topics such as Role-Based Access Control and Labeled Security are my special interests.

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