Linked by Anil Gulecha on Thu 11th Sep 2008 16:15 UTC
Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu OSNews has been reporting on the Debian/Ubuntu/GNU/Opensolaris hybrid for several years. But for those of you who've never looked more closely at this interesting OS, a Nexenta developer has laid out some of its more noteworthy features and advantages.
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RE[2]: All well and good...
by unoengborg on Fri 12th Sep 2008 06:08 UTC in reply to "RE: All well and good..."
unoengborg
Member since:
2005-07-06

apt-get is a Debian feature, not a solaris feature. The 18000 apps that come with it are not a Solaris feature either.


After using, or rather trying to use, Nexenta I sort of doubt the 18000 apps figure, are you sure that is not for Ubuntu? Anyway, it doesn't matter if they have 18000 apps, you only need a handful or so of important ones to bi missing to make life miserable.

For me the deal breaker was Java. Sun java won't install. I suppose you could try to port openjdk but a lot of the dependencies are just not there yet, so that would be a major project.

Most of the tools for administrationg it is Solaris oriented. E.g. SMF for starting and stopping services, ldapclient to set up LDAP,... I would think the only thing an Ubuntu user would find familliar is apt-get, exept that there are a lot fewer apps to get. Apart from apg-get Nexenta feels like Solaris and have very little in common with Ubunto from the adminster point of view.

The main advantage over standard Solaris of Nexenta is that it boots from ZFS, but so does OpenSolaris from Sun. OpenSolaris have a lot more complete set of libs (and important to me, Java). My guess is that it is much easier even for a Linux person to start out with that instead of Nexenta and then port whatever GNU he nees you need than going with Nexenta.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: All well and good...
by BluenoseJake on Fri 12th Sep 2008 09:50 in reply to "RE[2]: All well and good..."
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11
RE[3]: All well and good...
by BluenoseJake on Fri 12th Sep 2008 14:49 in reply to "RE[2]: All well and good..."
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

That's the point, you don't have to port GNU stuff to Nexenta, because it is already using the GNU userland.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: All well and good...
by unoengborg on Sat 13th Sep 2008 09:00 in reply to "RE[3]: All well and good..."
unoengborg Member since:
2005-07-06

That's the point, you don't have to port GNU stuff to Nexenta, because it is already using the GNU userland.


Actually, there are quite a lot of GNU packages that comes with OpenSolaris, or even standard Solaris as well. E.g. gcc, gmake, gtar,.. The difference is that it is often easier compile the GNU things that are not there, on real Solaris than it is on Nexenta. In fact you may not even have to compile them in real Solaris as most things can be pkg-get:ed from blastwave.org.

In theory Nexenta should be easier, as you should more or less just be able to port/recompile an Ubuntu package if its not already compiled for Nexenta, but in reality, you end up with a Gentoo like feeling where you spend a lot of time compiling your software.

You also have to remember, that there are some things from Linux that is missing in the Solaris kernel and vice versa. This means that there will be a few Ubuntu packages that not port easily without doing some real programming.Then take dependencies on these packages into account and you will realize that easy life on Nexenta is not apt-get:able.

So, if you wan't the GNU stuff on a Solaris kernel OpenSolaris or even standard Solaris is a better starting point at the moment. This may of course change in the future when more precompiled packages becomes available to Nexenta.

In spite of all my troubles with Nexenta, I kind of liked it. I think that this was mostly because it came without a GUI, that I had to turn off (not much use of a GUI in my server room), and that it booted directly from ZFS. However, persons coming to Nexenta with the hope and expectation that it will feel like Ubuntu will get very disappointed.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: All well and good...
by BluenoseJake on Fri 12th Sep 2008 21:20 in reply to "RE[2]: All well and good..."
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

uh, the article states, and I quote:

"Nexenta uses Debian's dpkg packaging system, and provides everything provided by Debian/Ubuntu environment"

According to Nexenta's wiki, it can use ubuntu's repos directly:

http://www.nexenta.org/os/BuildingPackages

But I guess there is a four step process to port them, so I guess you do have to port them, but it looks extremely easy.

Reply Parent Score: 2