[PC-BSD Testing] Open Solaris 2009.06 released
dejamuse at yahoo.com
Wed Jun 10 10:57:49 PDT 2009
Is there anything similar to Crossbow in FreeBSD? Looks interesting and since there's some cross pollination between the two.......Jeff
OpenSolaris 2009.06 released
has announced the availability of OpenSolaris 2009.06, the third major
release of the operating system. An experimental ARM port has also been
| June 10, 2009 - Ars Technica
OpenSolaris platform aims to supply a user-friendly desktop
distribution of the open source Solaris operating system. The third
major OpenSolaris release, version 2009.06, was made available last
week. It introduces support for SPARC hardware and also brings improved
Windows interoperability and advanced virtualization capabilities.
Along with 2009.06, Sun is also announcing the first-ever release of
the OpenSolaris ARM port, which could bring the operating system to
Sun first began a serious community-building effort around OpenSolaris with the emergence of the Project Indiana initiative
in 2007. Indiana was established to help grow OpenSolaris mindshare and
make the underlying technology more accessible to regular end users and
developers. During the early development stages a very strong emphasis
was placed on ease of installation and delivering a strong package
management experience. Sun recruited Debian founder Ian Murdock to get
the job done.
We reviewed the first official release
in 2008 and found an impressively solid out-of-the-box experience with
a high-quality installer that rivals Ubuntu for ease of use. There were
a lot of pieces missing, however, particularly hardware compatibility
and graphical configuration tools. The second release, 2008.11,
addressed the most significant early problems and brought some really
impressive features like the ZFS time slider.
Our biggest complaint with the 2008.11 release was the lack of
prepackaged software. Software availability has improved modestly
according to the numbers provided by the package management tool. The
2008.11 release offered 1,500 packages and the new version bumps it up
to 1,700. This an improvement, but it's still dwarfed by Ubuntu's
In practice, the repository has got most of what you will need to do
software development, especially if you are working within the
boundaries of Sun's ecosystem. As we noted in our 2008.11 review, you
can get a project up and running with NetBeans in a matter of minutes
after you install OpenSolaris. The most glaring omission from the
2008.11 repository was GVim, which I'm pleased to report is now
One of the most significant improvements in the new version of
OpenSolaris is the introduction of Project Crossbow, a powerful
framework for network virtualization and resource control. It lets you
compartmentalize Web services in separate virtualized network stacks,
making it possible to get extremely fine-grained control over the
network resources allocated to individual Web services. Sun suggests
that this technology is extremely effective for configuring specialized
QoS behaviors and ensuring that high load on one service won't impact
others running on an individual box.
Multimedia also got a boost in this release with the addition of
Codeina, a tool for obtaining GStreamer codecs. It provides users with
the ability to legally obtain patent-encumbered codecs by buying licensed copies from Fluendo.
The time slider, which is probably my favorite OpenSolaris feature, got several enhancements
in 2009.06. The new version has a button for manually initiating a
snapshot and has support for deleting snapshots. There is also a new
tool for exploring the version history of an individual file.
OpenSolaris ARM port
Another intriguing announcement is the availability of an OpenSolaris port for the ARM architecture. Sun first started talking about bringing OpenSolaris into the mobile space in 2007 when Project Indiana was beginning to heat up. The new ARM port could soon make this a reality.
"The OpenSolaris Operating System has many features well suited for
embedded systems now and in the future. The kernel is fully preemptable
and multithreaded, it provides real-time capabilities, and the modular
architecture is highly configurable," the OpenSolaris ARM project page
says. "Because of these advanced capabilities, we feel there are
interesting opportunities to extend OpenSolaris to new platforms, such
as the ARM architecture."
The initial release for ARM is based on version 2008.05 of
OpenSolaris, so it doesn't include the latest stuff. It is built to run
on NEC's NaviEngine 1, a multicore ARM11 SoC that is primarily designed
for car computers and portable navigation devices. Although the
OpenSolaris ARM port is still at an early stage of development, it's
likely that some of the folks at Sun are already salivating at the
prospect of eventually being able to provide an end-to-end open source
mobile platform built entirely with Sun's own technologies, ranging
from an OpenSolaris kernel to a JavaFX user interface.
The OpenSolaris 2009.06 release is another step forward for the
project and its new feature set reflects its growing viability as an
end-user platform. The OpenSolaris ARM port is also a promising
development that illustrates the growing versatility of the operating
system. To get more details about OpenSolaris 2009.06 and to download
the release, see the project's official website.
Click here to view comments on this article.
biggest deal in 2009.06 is Crossbow. In conjunction with zones, this
lets you create a zone with a completely virtual NIC (which can be
bridged to a real NIC, or live entirely within a virtual LAN, possibly
with ipnat/ipf passing traffic to and from it). With an
'ip-type=exclusive' zone bound to a virtual Crossbow NIC, a zone can do
pretty much the global zone can ordinarily do to a NIC. In 2008.11,
this is only true if a zone is granted exclusive access to a physical
The best part is that creating a virtual NIC is really really easy. For example, to create a vNIC bound to the physical adapter bge0, you'd just do:
dladm create-vnic -l bge0 vnic0
(This will automatically generate a MAC address for the virtual NIC, and it'll all persist across reboots).
you have a vnic device, you can use it as you would any other NIC
(including plumbing it in the global zone, if you so desire).
LANs are created by creating 'etherstubs', which you then use in place
of the physical NIC parameter in the command above:
dladm create-etherstub es0
dladm create-vnic -l es0 vnic0
dladm create-vnic -l es0 vnic1
ifconfig vnic0 plumb
ifconfig vnic0 169.254.0.1/16 up
can then bind 'vnic1' to a zone, and you have an entirely private,
virtualised, network between zones, including the global zone.
The Crossbow project page: http://opensolaris.org/os/project/crossbow/
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