Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 22nd May 2007 15:22 UTC, submitted by kev009
General Unix Prior to the general availability of AIX 6, IBM intends to make a pre-release version of AIX 6 available in an open beta. "AIX is an open, standards-based UNIX operating system that provides the enterprise information technology infrastructure for thousands of clients around the world. IBM intends to take the next step in the evolution of the AIX operating system with the release of the AIX V6.1 OS."
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New Features
by boing on Wed 23rd May 2007 00:57 UTC
Member since:

After reading that web page about new features it sounds like they looked at Solaris 10 (the other big iron Unix).

* Workload Partitions - ZONES

* Live Application Mobility - Would like to see live migrations for ZONES.

* Role Based Access Control - RBAC for Solaris

* Trusted AIX - Trusted Extensions in Solaris 10

* Encrypting filesystem - ZFS needs this and is being worked on. But ZFS has many other features over the current JFS.

* Secure by Default installation option - This is in the latest Solaris update

* Graphical Installation - Solaris has this, and working to improve this (try to get to Linux level).

* Network Installation Manager support for NFSv4 - Of course NFSv4 is in Solaris!

* Dynamic tracing - DTrace on Solaris

* Enhanced software first failure data capture - Solaris 10 Self Healing features, and how it links error codes to specific issues.

So if you really want AIX 6 features now (and production quality, which is a big thing), and want it for both SPARC (as compared to Power CPU), and X86, then I would suggest Solaris 10. AIX is playing catchup.

But don't get me wrong, Solaris 10 is not perfect. Three areas Sun really needs to improve on are:

1) Patching - Too many reboots required when patching, and patching breaks, is slow, etc etc. I can go on and on about how bad Solaris 10 patching and package management system is. Now in days you would think someone could patch a majority of an OS without rebooting. I like that IBM is trying to add something to help this. Sun needs to do this also!

2) Improve the GUI tools for the Linux and Windows users. Linux install GUI's and management tools are still easier to use.

3) Continue to make the X86 version more compatible with devices out there.

Reply Score: 2

RE: New Features
by Robert Escue on Wed 23rd May 2007 01:12 in reply to "New Features"
Robert Escue Member since:

I don't know about you but when I patch a Solaris machine I usually use a Patch Cluster, so there is only one reboot. And most of the patches that Sun releases do not require a reboot unless the patch modifies the kernel or a device driver. Also package management works fine for me and many other Solaris admins. I suppose you have never used AIX, because their package management is no picnic either, but it works.

Considering a number of Solaris (and AIX) admins control their systems through either a SSH session or through a terminal server, what point is there in making GUI tools? What I think Sun should provide is an equivalent to smitty (AIX), probably the best administrative tool made (next to smit and SAM (HP-UX).

Hardware support. Maybe you (and everybody else) should complain to the vendors, it is just as much their fault as it is the OS vendor.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: New Features
by lancealot on Wed 23rd May 2007 05:06 in reply to "RE: New Features"
lancealot Member since:

That is not true. There are many patches that require a reboot that have nothing to do with the kernel. Don't believe me check out " That is the latest patch for Apache 2, and as the docs say, it requires a reboot (straight from Suns web page). Also that patch breaks all Apache modules because of them compiling large file support. Not a good idea since not all Apache modules can't be recompiled (because they are older modules, or source was never available). But that is only ONE example, there are many patches just like this one that shouldn't want you to reboot. A reboot is required for it to install if you use SMPATCH. Call Sun techs, they will tell you to install most patches in single user mode.

Only do patch clusters? Those are only released like every 6 months (not sure exactly, but it is several months). In between the patch clusters there are many IMPORTANT security patches you will probably want if your Sun server is on the Internet. I won't name them, but some are REALLY bad exploits.

So what do you use to patch? Well you have "patchadd". If you want a automated tool kind of new in Solaris, you have smpatch, or if you want the GUI updatemanager. Let me tell you I have used BOTH of those, and two of my Sun systems eventually had a completely broken package map. I even called Sun support, both times they told me to RE-INSTALL or UPDATE from disc. One of the systems I tried to use the update disc failed in the middle, then wouldn't reboot (and the update keep failing). Sun told me to rebuild the system (not fun).

I expressed my concern directly to Sun about this, and they agreed they have issues with their patch system with Solaris 10 and zones.

Why GUI tools? Well not everyone wants to use command line completely, and it makes it easier for Windows or Linux people to use. I personally do everything from the command line, but that doesn't mean everyone should! Also since you mentioed SSH, tunneling X-windows apps through SSH is very easy, and makes access remotely to GUI's VERY secure and easy.

I do agree with you about smitty, and having something like that on Solaris would be nice. Smitty is very nice.

I was just saying working with vendors to continue the device support will only help Solaris cause in running on more computers.

In conclusion I admin Solaris systems for a large company, and we have millions of dollars invested in Sun. I work with them daily. I have even talked to Sun Engineers who agreed with me on some of the things that are issues. I will add that most of my issues with the patch system has been with Solaris 10 and zones. But Solaris didn't get really good until 10, which is when we invested more into Solaris. If you are a Solaris admin then you know the leap Solaris 10 was over previous versions in many areas.

Sorry to disappoint you but Solaris is not perfect. I am a huge Solaris fan, but I won't try to cover up its flaws.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: New Features
by taos on Wed 23rd May 2007 01:32 in reply to "New Features"
taos Member since:

Yes, you're mostly right.
S10's release must have had a huge impact on AIX's roadmap - remember at that time many people, including many in IBM - were talking about replacing AIX with Linux, even though AIX 5.2/5.3 was already(arguably) a better Unix than Solaris 9.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: New Features
by Duffman on Fri 25th May 2007 15:08 in reply to "New Features"
Duffman Member since:

I can do exactly the reverse.

. Solaris ZFS - try to catch up with the excellent LVM of AIX (migratepv, etc ...). And no, Sun LVM is just a joke (and a pain to manage just look at Sun's presentation of ZFS to see the comparison)
. Solaris Zone, try to catch up with IBM LPAR (but LPAR is a REAL virtualisation solution). With LPAR, I don't have to reboot all my servers for a patch in the global zone ...
. Solaris SMF - try to catch with System Resource Controller

Some things solaris still didn't catch
- The device management and I mean it: on AIX checking the hardware, which card depend of this controller, etc is a pleasure.
- The error handling (errpt): the single point to check if your host is failing with some increadible description of the problem (instead of checking dozens of .log file with one line of description..)

I would point to this email:

Not that I really like Solaris 10, but saying that IBM is trying to catch up with Solaris is just a joke. Solaris 10 just catch up with AIX, and not in all area today.

Edited 2007-05-25 15:11

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: New Features
by Civikminded on Fri 25th May 2007 15:56 in reply to "RE: New Features"
Civikminded Member since:

I agree with you. At my current admin position I get the pleasure of using Solaris 10 on E2900's and AIX on P 570s.

As much as I want to say Sun has the better platform, it just isnt the case. AIX/SystemP is a pure joy to work on compared to the Solaris systems. AIX LVM is so elegant compared to clunky Solstace or Veritas. I dont know of a single Sun shop using ZFS in a production capacity either. IBM NIM makes patching/deploying so simple a caveman could do it. LPAR blows Zones totally away.

I used to be a Sun bigot, but as sad as it makes me to say it, they dont have the better technology anymore.

Reply Parent Score: 1