Tuesday Aug 27, 2013

Oracle Solaris Hands-On Labs at Oracle OpenWorld 2013

We're going to have some very interesting Oracle Solaris-themed Hands-On Labs (HOLs) at Oracle OpenWorld 2013.

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Friday Jun 07, 2013

Instant Automated Installer Zone for Oracle Solaris 11.1

One of the biggest differences between Oracle Solaris 11 and previous releases is how provisioning tasks are handled.  It's safe to say that just about any installation or update function you can think of has gotten at least an order of magnitude faster, easier, safer, smarter and more powerful -- but still, there's that word "different" ... .

The key new provisioning technology, as you may already know, is the Image Packaging System (IPS). It's the framework for installation, maintenance and removal of software on an Oracle Solaris 11 system. Another significant new technology introduced in Oracle Solaris 11 is the Automated Installer (AI), which replaces JumpStart for hands-free installation of large numbers of systems.

We've just introduced something new to make it easier to start working with AI, so you can get past that "different" part and start reaping the (major) benefits. The name's kinda long:

Oracle Solaris Zone with Automated Installer and Repository

...but that's because there's a lot it's doing for you in one shot. As the name implies, it sets up a new zone on your system, with a local Oracle Solaris 11.1 package repository for both SPARC and x86 deployments, and a DHCP server which you can optionally turn on, configured to act as an AI server.  It's pretty much "install and go" and you can immediately start to explore the extensive feature set of AI.

(A vocabulary note: this is what we call an "Oracle VM Template" -- specifically, it's an Oracle VM Template for Zones, meaning it installs in an existing Oracle Solaris 11 instance rather than in a hypervisor. If you haven't heard the term "template" in this context before, you might think that means it's just a setup checklist of some kind -- nope, this download includes all the necessary software.  In this case, almost 6 GB worth! There are other Oracle VM Templates for Zones you might want to check out as well.)

See the Installation Notes section in the Readme to make sure you're running at the proper Oracle Solaris 11.1 SRU levels; there are also notes about installing this in a Logical Domain.

Tuesday May 29, 2012

Roll Your Own Solaris Blogroll

Something handy I just ran across:

There are lots of people here who blog about Solaris, either as their main topic, or as the occasional tangent. If the blogger has tagged their post appropriately, here's a quick way to find them:

Note that this is a little different from using the "word cloud" you can find in the right-hand column on this page, since that only finds articles tagged in this blog. The above links will find all tagged blogs.oracle.com posts.

Some topics are a little trickier to nail down, because there may not be a standardized tag for the topic, so building a more conventional "blogroll" is on my to-do list.

UPDATE: Steph and Jeff beat me to it -- see the list on OTN.

In the meantime, you can also refer to the post Markus Weber made of interesting Solaris 11 launch-related posts.

Friday Mar 23, 2012

Oracle Solaris 11 Developer Webinar Series

Pupils in a Canadian school train, 1950.This coming Tuesday, a new series of webcasts (not to be confused with a series of tubes) is kicking off, aimed at developers.

Register today

Next week's session covers IPS and related topics:

What: Modern Software Packaging for Enterprise Developers

When: Tuesday, March 27, 9 AM Pacific

Who: Eric Reid, Oracle Systems ISV Engineering

We've got several more queued up -- here's the full schedule, with registration links for each one. Or, see the series overview, which includes a link to a "teaser" preview of all the sessions.


(all sessions 9 AM Pacific)


Modern Software Packaging for Enterprise Developers

March 27th

Eric Reid
(Principal Software Engineer)

Simplify Your Development Environment with Zones, ZFS & More

April 10th

Eric Reid (Principal Software Engineer)
Stefan Schneider (Chief Technologist, ISV Engineering)

Managing Application Services – Using SMF Manifests in Solaris 11

April 24th

Matthew Hosanee
(Principal Software Engineer)

Optimize Your Applications on Oracle Solaris 11: The DTrace Advantage

May 8th

Angelo Rajadurai
(Principal Software Engineer)

Maximize Application Performance and Reliability on Oracle Solaris 11

May 22nd

Ikroop Dhillon
(Principal Product Manager)

Writing Oracle Solaris 11 Device Drivers

June 6th

Bill Knoche
(Principal Software Engineer)

Monday Apr 25, 2011

Managing your application and service lifecycles with Oracle Solaris IPS

We've been chatting with a number of customers recently through our Oracle Solaris Strategy Council and various Customer Advisory Boards. One clear area of focus for several of our enterprise datacenter customers is Lifecycle Management of their applications and services -- the ability to quickly design, test, deploy, manage and retire application and services in the datacenter.

After a couple of decades of using the SVR4 software packaging model we went back to the drawing board with Oracle Solaris 11 to create a modern 21st century software packaging system that addresses those lifecycle needs. Now you can quickly install Oracle Solaris on your favorite SPARC or x86 system, add only those packages you need for your application or service environment and quickly move through your lifecycle process.

In Oracle Solaris 11 the new Image Packaging System (IPS) has several helpful features:
  • Just enough OS -- We now install the bare minimum packages to get your system up and running. As you decide which application or services you want running on the system IPS locates those packages and add just what you need for your application. This helps harden the system from a security perspective so that you are only running the software packages you need for your application.
  • Network repositories -- Installation and updates to your system are now quick and simple using our new network repository model. No network? No problem. You can install an Oracle Solaris 11 system from our DVDs which contain our full Oracle Solaris 11 repository. You can also create a local repository to house your applications and Oracle Solaris packages and update just the local repository from the internet to further firewall your internal systems. Updates with the network repositories are quick and painless. You'll be notified as new packages become available through our Oracle Solaris support repository.
  • Robust dependency checking -- Full dependency checking is built into the IPS model so when you install a software package you automatically pull down the dependent packages the application needs to run. No more guessing at which packages are needed.
  • Oracle Solaris ZFS Boot Environments -- In addition to our new packaging system we integrated our new default file system -- Oracle Solaris ZFS -- with our packaging and installation systems so we can create a snapshot of the system software on your system and then apply new package updates to the new snapshot. (ZFS snapshots are easy and take up very little space.) This approach creates boot environments that allow you to test drive the new updates without losing your existing configuration. If you like the new updates then you can just keep using the new boot environment. If you want to roll back to your prior configuration you can quickly boot that older boot environment. Risk free updates.

Completing the Lifecycle Management picture for Oracle Solaris 11 Express is the use of Oracle Solaris Zones to quickly create a new application or service environment, install your software, test the service and then deploy the new application/service zone into production. We've spent a great deal of time integrating IPS with Zones to create an agile virtual application environment.

For a much more in-depth introduction to IPS check out our Oracle Solaris 11 Express Technology Spotlight -- Oracle Solaris 11 Express Package Management with Image Packaging System (IPS). You'll find videos, podcasts, whitepapers, demos and screencasts there to help you start planning your new approach to Lifecycle Management.

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