Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 29th Jan 2010 16:08 UTC
Oracle and SUN "Several of the concerns about Oracle's acquisition of Sun have revolved around how Unix technologies led by Sun would continue under the new ownership. As it turns out, Solaris users might not have much to worry about, as Oracle executives on Wednesday affirmed their commitment to preserving the efforts. In the case of Solaris, Oracle had already been a big supporter of the rival Linux operating system. Oracle has its own Enterprise Linux offering, based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. For Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, the idea that Linux and Solaris are mutually exclusive is a false choice."
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mmm... Solaris is *highly* overrated.
by sergio on Fri 29th Jan 2010 23:08 UTC in reply to "Not all *nix is equal..."
sergio
Member since:
2005-07-06

Laggard AIX has something truly "enterprise" that trendy Solaris hasn't: good virtualization.

System p (and AIX) have incredible virtualization capabilities. The best UNIX virtualization by far... and AIX's been using the same technology for years, It's a really solid product. SUN changed their virtualization plans every year!

Containers/Zones and LDOMs are good but can't compete with AIX's LPARs (or VMware ESX or even Xen). You have to do black magic to run RHEL or Solaris 8/9 using "Branded Zones"... that's not "high end", that's not "Enterprise"... that's a complete joke.

ZFS and Dtrace are amazing, I love 'em, but They're pretty new technologies! You don't have ZFS in every Solaris box out there! (in fact VxVM and SVM are much more common). AIX have LVM since 1991 or so, and Linux since 1998.

Solaris is really good, but It isn't more "high end" than RHEL, AIX or any other Enterprise *nix. That's a complete marketing bullshit.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Kebabbert Member since:
2007-07-27

"Containers/Zones and LDOMs are good but can't compete with AIX's LPARs (or VMware ESX or even Xen). You have to do black magic to run RHEL or Solaris 8/9 using "Branded Zones"... that's not "high end", that's not "Enterprise"... that's a complete joke."

Branded Zones require Black Magic? Eh? You have never tried zones yourself. It is very easy to set Zones up. And Zones are extremely light weight also, as all Linux kernel calls get remapped to Solaris kernel calls. There is only one kernel active; the Solaris kernel. A Zone typically requires 40MB RAM and 100MB disk space (if you use ZFS). One guy started 1000 zones in 1GB RAM - it was dog slow, but it worked. Try to do that with AIX?

The point is, you just zip an old Solaris v8 server, and then drop that zip file into an Solaris 10 Zone, and now you can get rid of your old server.

You can also use LDOMS, which is Solaris equivalence to LPAR.


"ZFS and Dtrace are amazing, I love 'em, but They're pretty new technologies! You don't have ZFS in every Solaris box out there! (in fact VxVM and SVM are much more common). AIX have LVM since 1991 or so, and Linux since 1998."

LVM can not be compared to ZFS, it is ridiculous. ZFS is the only solution that REALLY protects your data, LVM does not.

IBM has a DTrace copy: ProbeVue. I wonder how good it is? And then IBM wants to have the ZFS copy: BTRFS.




Regarding "Linux is on Top500". Yes, we find Linux on Top500 but Top500 super computers are basically a bunch of PC on a fast network. They are very specialized and do one thing fast: calculate. They use stripped down and modified Linux kernel, not std Linux kernel. The difference between super computers and Big Iron (one big machine with lots of CPUs) are vast, see wikipedia article. Big Iron is hard to do, they are general multi purpose machines with lots of complex stuff. A bunch of PC sending messages and calculating is easy to do - it is almost like SETI Folding works: a bunch of computers do a calculation and sends back the result. It is very different to Big Iron where Solaris scales well - it is the same install CD and the same Solaris kernel on Asus EEE PC up to big iron with 100s of CPUs - that is true Scalability! You dont have to modify anything on Solaris kernel!

Why dont Super Computers use the Solaris kernel which scales much better on Big Iron? Solaris kernel is complex and difficult to modify and strip down, with some weird licensing (commercial stuff is ok?). It is far easier to use a naive kernel as Linux under GPL to modify.

Look at SAP latest benchmarks. Linux on 48 cores only utilize 87% of all cores, whereas Solaris utilize 99% of all cores. That means Linux does not scale on a single machine with many cores.

Reply Parent Score: 6

DRIQ Member since:
2008-04-28


The point is, you just zip an old Solaris v8 server, and then drop that zip file into an Solaris 10 Zone, and now you can get rid of your old server.

Hi there, I have a Solaris 2.5 @ work. The hardware is the Enterprise 3000 that is dieing. The SAP guy told us that the SAP is too old, cannot be upgraded, must run on 2.5. Could you please advise the best way forward?
Thanx & regards

Reply Parent Score: 0

tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

Actually Linux scale far better than both Solaris and/or AIX. The largest single image computers are either old Irix boxes, or new numa intel boxes running linux. In fact most of the numa scheduling and cell migration from Irix was ported to Linux long long time ago.

The thing that both AIX and Solaris have going for them is that they both have their own proprietary integrated platforms (SPARC and POWER systems) which provide most of the "magic" regarding fault tolerance, and other enterprise-like facilities.

But from a processing scalability perspective, sorry neither AIX nor Solaris can hold a candle against Linux. However, as I said in other enterprise centric features both platforms are far more mature than linux, but it is mostly due to the specialized HW they run on...rather than just the software itself.

BTW, some of the largest enterprise systems, like Amazon... run almost exclusively on linux: from web fronts, load balancers, to even the DB backends. With some sprinkles of solaris/ORACLE at the very very deep backend. Granted, computers are just tools. And for plenty of applications, Solaris and AIX are far better suited than Linux. But in the same sense Linux may not have some of the specific capabilities of those systems. Labeling linux as immature or not ready for the enterprise is just silly.

Reply Parent Score: 2

bert64 Member since:
2007-04-23

System P (and System Z) virtualization is more of a hardware function than part of the OS, sure you can run AIX inside of an LPAR but you can also run Linux.

Solaris zones are not meant to compete with this or with vmware, they are a lighter weight alternative which serve a different purpose. There is nothing stopping you from installing solaris inside of vmware or a similar technology. And on the subject of LPARs, Sun has something similar on their high end offerings anyway, and has for years.

Reply Parent Score: 2

dvzt Member since:
2008-10-23

Laggard AIX has something truly "enterprise" that trendy Solaris hasn't: good virtualization.


I suppose you are talking about capabilities of System p hardware, not AIX. Btw SPARC machines have virtualization capabilities too.

SUN changed their virtualization plans every year!


Citation needed.

Containers/Zones and LDOMs are good but can't compete with AIX's LPARs (or VMware ESX or even Xen).


First of all, you are totally confusing hardware virtualization and OS-virtualization. Technologies you named are different tools for different purposes. Second, with zones you can have hundreds of virtual environments on single server, how many can you have with VMWare, LPARs or Xen? Third, Solaris does run on Xen as dom0 and domU.

You have to do black magic to run RHEL or Solaris 8/9 using "Branded Zones"... that's not "high end", that's not "Enterprise"... that's a complete joke.


That's not a joke, that's how OS-virtualization works.

ZFS and Dtrace are amazing, I love 'em, but They're pretty new technologies! You don't have ZFS in every Solaris box out there! (in fact VxVM and SVM are much more common).


What? Solaris 9 was EOLd long time ago, and there is already eighth update of Solaris 10 (which includes ZFS) available. You expect ZFS to be backported or what?

AIX have LVM since 1991 or so, and Linux since 1998.


What's yor point? Solaris has Disksuite a VxVM for very very long time. (I'm not going to google for exact time.) Btw. Linux's LVM is practically useless.

Solaris is really good, but It isn't more "high end" than RHEL, AIX or any other Enterprise *nix. That's a complete marketing bullshit.


Linux on servers is x86 (== low end) OS, that's all. Term "enterprise Linux" is an oxymoron and is not in the same category as Solaris and AIX.

Reply Parent Score: 3

SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

All of your points are very good and it's true that most of the virtualization in AIX is hardware based but just like Zones, AIX has OS virtuailzation as well. It's called WPAR (as in work partition). In the end though, both platforms rely mostly on hardware when it comes to true virtualization with POWER having the added advantage of hardware virtualization support built in from the low end all the way up and having inherited all the tech from the mainframe.

The two things that AIX is missing are obviously DTRACE and ZFS, the latter of which anybody would have to admit is a trully superb filesystem, but if I wanted serious hardware virtualization and had the choice, I'd go for AIX any day. The ability to add and extract servers from a virtualized pool, live migrate from one server to another and do all this through an extremely simple to use web interface without needing to resort to the command line puts pretty much anything Sun has to shame, for the moment.

Addendum: I wouldn't go so far as to call Enterprise Linux an oxymoron. I've installed SLES on POWER for a TSM backup server and Linux uses the inherited low downtime capabilities of the POWER platform just as well as AIX does. Thanks to the tools IBM have developed for LoP (Linux on POWER), it is just as totally trivial to swap out CPUs, memory and expansion cards as it is using AIX. If the kernel couldn't handle hot-swapping, then I'd think you'd have a point, but that is demonstrably not the case.

Edited 2010-01-31 20:28 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2