Lynch's Installation experience of OpenSolaris

Lynch, One of my friends, tried to install OpenSolaris on his boxes recently. From his blog post, it's definitely not a good experience for him. And at last, the installation attempt failed. Fortunately, he'll still try it later. Great! I'll also try my best to help you, buddy!
First of all, it's not easy for the users to download the huge images from the website(almost 2.5G all together) and burn them into DVDs/CDs. But lynch didn't complain about it. I guess the open source experiences help him a lot:-)
Following are the problems he met during the installation process:
1. The memory requirement is huge for the graphic installation. His very first attempt was on VMWare with 512M memory. During his installation, the memory was almost exhausted and Firefox crashed. For the second try, he allocated 256M memory to the VM, and found that 400M is the minimal requirement for graphic. So he had to choose the text mode.
2. The initialization process for the installation is really slow. It takes 3-4 minites to load the graphic installation interface from DVD on a Opteron 146 with 2G memory. It's painful for the user to wait such a long time for the response.
3. The installation control isn't user-friendly for the text mode. Solaris uses F2/F3/F4 keys to control the installation flow, and sometimes even ESC+2. The user can't go backward at some pages, for example, the domain selection page(NIS、NIS+、LDAP、None). Only after several continual input, the user can go back several pages before.
4. After the installation, there isn't a graphic interface for the network configuration(hostname, dns, etc.). As I know, we have a project related to this problem ongoing. Hope that we can give it a shoot as soon as possible. Otherwise, we can only run sys-unconfig to reset all the information.
5. The poor video device driver support. Opteron 146 has bundled the video card(nVidia) on its motherboard. Since Solaris can't recognize it, the user has to use the Text mode also. For Linux, it can still load VESA driver to start up the graphic interface.
6. During the installation process, the program crashed for several times. It's not so stable for some reason. Actually, I don't have the same experience for this problem. In the text mode, the network installation process goes smoothly all the time.
7. There isn't any Chinese Community for Solaris. When the Chinese users meet any problem, it's hard for them to continue.
8. The different label format for hard disk can make some users confused.
Hope all the problems above won't hold back the users.

Comments:

We are addressing all of these comments - your blog post should have mentioned the areas where we're working (really hard!) to fix these problems:

So, yes, there's a few places where we need work, but I think we're making excellent progress on getting there!

Posted by Tim Foster on September 20, 2006 at 11:46 AM CST #

Thanks for your excellent translation of my complains. I should have done it in the first place.

Posted by dipplum on September 20, 2006 at 12:50 PM CST #

[Trackback] [...] Lynch, One of my friends, tried to install OpenSolaris on his boxes recently. [...]

Posted by bitacle.org on September 20, 2006 at 03:01 PM CST #

One stupid mistake made by me, about 5. The poor video device driver support. I find out that Solaris Express has a VESA compatible driver for XWindow, and it works on my machine.

Posted by dipplum on September 20, 2006 at 05:40 PM CST #

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