Hotlanta Celebrates One Year of OpenSolaris


The Atlanta OpenSolaris User Group launched a bit of an early birthday celebration for our good friend, OpenSolaris, last night with a rousing meeting. George Wilson, from Sun's Revenue Products Engineering group, gave us an update on what's new in ZFS lately. I have to say that I am more and more impressed with the things that you can and will be able to do with ZFS. George and I were talking about how one might use promotion of cloned ZFS filesystems as a part of a Q/A and patching process, especially for zones sitting in a ZFS filesystem. I am not yet sure of exactly how all of this might work, but I think it has promise.


George also talked about using ZFS for the root filesystem and booting from a ZFS filesystem. Also very cool. Seems to me like this has a lot of benefits. You never will have to go through the pain of backing up and restoring a root drive to resize /var or /opt! Plus, you get the added safety and security of ZFS. Old-timers who want to see a root disk that looks like a simple disk may have to rethink things a little, but I think the added benefits will outweigh the effort of change.


After George's talk, I took the stage and talked about integrating Zones and ZFS. I'm pretty excited about this. On the one hand, being able to use ZFS to provide application data space to a zone allows the zone administrator to take on the responsibility of managing their own filesystems to fit their needs, without bothering the global platform adminstrator. On the other hand, using ZFS for the zoneroot, I can easily and quickly create new zones, cloning them from a master, using ZFS properties to keep them from stomping on one another. All very cool. I have to congratulate the whole ZFS team (and the Zones team).


I am looking forward to our next meeting - July 11 - when we will hear from Alok Aggarwal on NFSv4. We got a good list of suggested topics that should keep us going through the fall.

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