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Solaris Operating System

Solaris is the UNIX-based operating system of Sun Microsystems with roots in the BSD operating system family. Up to the version 3.x this operating system was called SunOS, this name was kept into the internal release information of current Solaris versions. The first version of SunOS was published in 1982. With the version 4.0 the new product name Solaris was introduced for SunOS releases as of 1989. The operating system Solaris 2.0 (SunOS 5.0) basing on the UNIX system V release 4 was published in July 1992.


In 1987, AT&T Corporation and Sun announced that they were collaborating on a project to merge the most popular Unix variants on the market at that time: Berkeley Software Distribution, UNIX System V, and Xenix. This became Unix System V Release 4 (SVR4).

On September 4, 1991, Sun announced that it would replace its existing BSD-derived Unix, SunOS 4, with one based on SVR4. This was identified internally as SunOS 5, but a new marketing name was introduced at the same time: Solaris 2. The justification for this new overbrand was that it encompassed not only SunOS, but also the OpenWindows graphical user interface and Open Network Computing (ONC) functionality.

Although SunOS 4.1.x micro releases were retroactively named Solaris 1 by Sun, the Solaris name is used almost exclusively to refer only to the releases based on SVR4-derived SunOS 5.0 and later.

For releases based on SunOS 5, the SunOS minor version is included in the Solaris release number. For example, Solaris 2.4 incorporates SunOS 5.4. After Solaris 2.6, the 2. was dropped from the release name, so Solaris 7 incorporates SunOS 5.7, and the latest release SunOS 5.11 forms the core of Solaris 11.4.

Although SunSoft stated in its initial Solaris 2 press release their intent to eventually support both SPARC and x86 systems, the first two Solaris 2 releases, 2.0 and 2.1, were SPARC-only. An x86 version of Solaris 2.1 was released in June 1993, about 6 months after the SPARC version, as a desktop and uniprocessor workgroup server operating system. It included the Wabi emulator to support Windows applications. At the time, Sun also offered the Interactive Unix system that it had acquired from Interactive Systems Corporation. In 1994, Sun released Solaris 2.4, supporting both SPARC and x86 systems from a unified source code base.

On September 2, 2017, Simon Phipps, a former Sun Microsystems employee not hired by Oracle in the acquisition, reported on Twitter that Oracle had laid off the Solaris core development staff, which many interpreted as sign that Oracle no longer intended to support future development of the platform. While Oracle did have a large layoff of Solaris development engineering staff, development continued and Solaris 11.4 was released in 2018.


The different components in the Solaris operating system structure are −


This includes the physical components of the computer system such as monitor, keyboard, data storage etc.

I/O Buffer

I/O devices are very important in the computer systems. They provide users with the means of interacting with the system. The I/O buffer handles the buffers for the I/O devices and makes sure that they work correctly.

Device Drivers

Most of the device drivers are part of the operating system such as keyboard and screen console drivers, floppy and hard-disk drivers, printer port driver, serial port driver etc.


The schedulers schedule the processes in such a way that the system resources are divided between the processes according to their need.

Process Management

This is responsible for managing the processes i.e assigning the processor to a process at a time. This is known as process scheduling. The different algorithms used for process scheduling are FCFS (First Come First Serve), SJF (Shortest Job First), Priority Scheduling, Round-Robin Scheduling etc.

Memory Management

Memory management deals with memory and the moving of processes from disk to primary memory for execution and back again.

File System

The different methods used by the operating system to keep track of the files on a disk constitutes the file system. It also includes the method in which the files are organized on the disk.

I/O Services

The I/O services provided by the Solaris operating system include the communication services between the computer system input and output devices and the outside world.

System API

The system application programming interface (API) contains software building tools, subroutine definitions as well as communication protocols that facilitate interaction between systems.

User Processes

The user processes are the applications run by the users in the Solaris operating system. These processes carry out the designated tasks in the operating system.



1.Insert the DVD and power on the system. 2.Once the system is boot up ,just press enter to get the below menu. Here i have selected keyboard layout as US-English (Standard installation)

3.Select preferred language here.I have selected “English”

4.Here you have option to add additional drivers and modify terminal type.

You can also use this menu for OS recovery using option “3 Shell”.Let me go with option 1 to install Solaris 11.

5.This is a welcome screen which you will get in Solaris 11.

Note:In any window,press F2 to continue and Press F3 to go back to the previous screen.

Any time you can quit the installation by selecting F9.

6.Here you have option to select root disks as ISCSI & Local disks. I have choosen local disks.

7.If you have multiple local disks,Select the disk to install OS.Here my root disk is c8t10d0.

8.Select “Use the entire disk” option since we are going to use ZFS as root FS.

9. Enter the system’s hostname. My host name is “unixarena-SOL11”.

10.In the above menu,you can select “Manually” option to configure IP address manually.You can use TAB key to navigate in the screen.

11.Here is the window to choose Name service.

12.You have options to select alternative DNS .

13.Now its time to select your timezone.

14.Timezone continues with location details.

15.Set Date & Time now.

16.Time to secure you system by setting complex root password. Here you have option to create a new user as well.

17.If you have oracle support Email_ID /password,Just you enter here to get regular updates from oracle.If you do not have one,do not enter anything just continue.

18.You will get summary screen now.

19.The actual Installation begins here.All the files will copied to the local disks in this step.

20.Once installation has been completed ,press F8 to reboot the system.

21.After system reboot, your system will boot in local hard disk and you will get below console screen.


Some of the features of the Solaris Structure are −

  • Solaris protects the user data by encrypting everything as required at any time.

  • Solaris uses hardware-based encryption to secure the virtual machines and live migrations.

  • It provides limited control to prevent credentials misuse. This is done by giving only necessary access.

  • There is a limit to the system privileges that can be provided to employees, contractors etc.

  • Solaris secures cloud deployments by locking the virtual machines and using compliance standards.


  1. Free Redistribution so that everyone can buy or give to others

  2. Derived Work, the user can change the existing code on Sun Solaris and redistribute to the public.

  3. No Discrimination i.e., the code must be made available to every one in order to be developed and refined

  4. ZFS is a system restore which is almost similar to the restore on windows

  5. Can integrate with AMP stack ( Apache, MySQL and PHP) to run a webserver

  6. Stable file system for data base


  1. The price is quite expensive commercial operating system

  2. Driver hardware unfavorable

  3. Sun Solaris operating system is not as good as free sun Solaris operating systems are commercial (paid)

Source: unixarena, Wikipedia

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