Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 10th Nov 2011 20:45 UTC, submitted by Straylight
Oracle and SUN I just emerged, blinking, from the world of Skyrim, only to realise Sun Oracle has released the 11th version of Solaris (well, technically it's the 7th, but okay, we'll roll with it). I'll be honest and upfront about it: Solaris is totally out of my league, and as such, it's very hard for me to properly summarise what this release is all about, so I won't even try.
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RE[2]: Cloudwashing
by tony on Fri 11th Nov 2011 01:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Cloudwashing"
tony
Member since:
2005-07-06

"The greatest thing that came out of Solaris was ZFS, but its usefulness is limited by the fact that it was never GPL compatible, and now it's owned by Oracle (which a lot of IT shops avoid like the plague).


Other very nice Solaris features:
- RBAC (only IBM AIX can compete here)
- ZONES (FreeBSD Jails still lag here a lot)
- SMF – systemd can only dream about it
- CROSSBOW - network stack virtualization
- BOOT ENVIRONMENTS - create one, delete everything (rm -rf /*) and You still have fully working system

These are features not seen in any other OS, not only UNIX ...
"

Eh, most of those aren't really that interesting. Zoning/Containers have been around for a while, haven't seen that great of a use case. Virtualization on a Type 1 hypervisor has proven much more useful in a general sense. Boot environments are neat, but it's only in Solaris, so not of any use to me. Not a feature that's going to get me to drop Linux.



"It's got an interesting future in FreeBSD, but again hampered by the lack of some awesome ZFS features (like encryption) that aren't in the FreeBSD release yet.


FreeBSD provides encryption since quite long time, its just not ZFS feature on FreeBSD, its GEOM feature, encrypt the devices (with key or passward) using GELI and then create ZFS pool from encrypted devices, voila!
"

The last time I tried (about a year ago) to encrypt devices with GELI and then take those devices and add them to a ZFS pool, the performance was absolutely terrible. There were weird pauses, wildly inconsistent pauses in throughput, huge latencies, and overall a disaster.

So unless it's native encryption in the file system, I'm not counting it as a feature.

Reply Parent Score: -1

RE[3]: Cloudwashing
by Kebabbert on Fri 11th Nov 2011 09:23 in reply to "RE[2]: Cloudwashing"
Kebabbert Member since:
2007-07-27

Eh, most of those aren't really that interesting. Zoning/Containers have been around for a while, haven't seen that great of a use case. Virtualization on a Type 1 hypervisor has proven much more useful in a general sense. Boot environments are neat, but it's only in Solaris, so not of any use to me. Not a feature that's going to get me to drop Linux.

It is not interesting because you dont know about this stuff. Other people are excited.


For instance, DTrace is unique and there has not been any tech like that before earlier. Linux devs have even switched to Solaris just to get DTrace. That is why IBM is copying DTrace and calling it ProbeVue. FreeBSD and Mac OS X has ported DTrace. Linux is copying it, but Systemtap is a very bad and unstable copy, according to DTrace experts.


ZFS protects your data on disk, against data corruption. No Linux filesystem does this. Your data might be corrupted, and Linux will not even notice it. This is proven by comp sci researchers. You want to read their research on this?


Boot Environments is a killer feature. If you patch your Linux installation, and something breaks, what do you do? Reinstall everything? With ZFS BE I just reboot into GRUB and choose an earlier functioning snapshot. Almost zero downtime. I have often done weird stuff while learning Solaris, and broke something. Instead of reinstalling everything, I just reboot and kill the latest snapshot which broke my install. This takes a couple of seconds, and I am back to a real functioning state. Killer feature.


Containers are really really neat. Lot of sys admins are excited about this. If you use VMware and start up several OS instances, then each guest OS will use 4GB RAM, and CPU, etc. With Containers, each guest will use 40MB and nil CPU. One guy booted 1.000 Containers on a server with 1GB RAM, it was extremely slow but it could be done. Try that with VMware.

This Containers is the building block for virtualizing everything, the Network stack, etc. Everything is virtualized in Solaris 11. Create as many network cards as you want, create as many Containers as you want, etc - thus you can have lot of virtual servers in one Server. This is why Solaris11 is called "First Virtual OS" ever. In Linux, if you create a container, is everything else virtualized? The network stack? etc? No?

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[4]: Cloudwashing
by kokara4a on Fri 11th Nov 2011 11:03 in reply to "RE[3]: Cloudwashing"
kokara4a Member since:
2005-09-16

Containers are really really neat. Lot of sys admins are excited about this. If you use VMware and start up several OS instances, then each guest OS will use 4GB RAM, and CPU, etc. With Containers, each guest will use 40MB and nil CPU. One guy booted 1.000 Containers on a server with 1GB RAM, it was extremely slow but it could be done. Try that with VMware.


What you say is true but it's not the entire picture. Virtualization is getting better by the day. There are memory ballooning drivers that will report the free memory in the guest so it can be marked free in the host. Same pages merging can also decrease the memory footprint of a VM. Using KVM with the appropriate Linux kernel inside occupies surpisingly little memory.

This Containers is the building block for virtualizing everything, the Network stack, etc. Everything is virtualized in Solaris 11. Create as many network cards as you want, create as many Containers as you want, etc - thus you can have lot of virtual servers in one Server. This is why Solaris11 is called "First Virtual OS" ever. In Linux, if you create a container, is everything else virtualized? The network stack? etc? No?


You have to specify which Linux container flavor you have in mind. Both OpenVZ and LXC have network stack virtualization. In fact, OpenVZ has everything Solaris Zones have (maybe not, I'm not familiar with Zones but OpenVZ is very feature rich). LXC has some shortcomings (e.g. there's no UID/GID virtualization) but is there in all recent kernels so very convenient to experiment with.

In short, I don't think that Solaris can boast big advantages in virtualization of any kind compared to Linux

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[4]: Cloudwashing
by tony on Fri 11th Nov 2011 19:12 in reply to "RE[3]: Cloudwashing"
tony Member since:
2005-07-06

"Eh, most of those aren't really that interesting. Zoning/Containers have been around for a while, haven't seen that great of a use case. Virtualization on a Type 1 hypervisor has proven much more useful in a general sense. Boot environments are neat, but it's only in Solaris, so not of any use to me. Not a feature that's going to get me to drop Linux.

It is not interesting because you dont know about this stuff. Other people are excited.
"

Oh, I know about that stuff. I just don't care.



For instance, DTrace is unique and there has not been any tech like that before earlier. Linux devs have even switched to Solaris just to get DTrace. That is why IBM is copying DTrace and calling it ProbeVue. FreeBSD and Mac OS X has ported DTrace. Linux is copying it, but Systemtap is a very bad and unstable copy, according to DTrace experts.


It's a nice feature, don't get me wrong. But the worse part about DTrace has always been Sun, and now it's Oracle. Solaris isn't widely deployed, is getting less widely deployed, and it's been off the widely deployed radar for about 10 years now. DTrace isn't enough (for me, and for most people) to switch.


ZFS protects your data on disk, against data corruption. No Linux filesystem does this. Your data might be corrupted, and Linux will not even notice it. This is proven by comp sci researchers. You want to read their research on this?


Again, I know all about ZFS. I love it, but like DTrace, the worst part about ZFS was Sun and now Oracle. Sun was terribly run, and Oracle is just... has left a very bad taste in my mouth.



Boot Environments is a killer feature. If you patch your Linux installation, and something breaks, what do you do? Reinstall everything? With ZFS BE I just reboot into GRUB and choose an earlier functioning snapshot. Almost zero downtime. I have often done weird stuff while learning Solaris, and broke something. Instead of reinstalling everything, I just reboot and kill the latest snapshot which broke my install. This takes a couple of seconds, and I am back to a real functioning state. Killer feature.


A real effort has been made in the last few years to move away from being OS dependent. To keep the apps and data separated from the OS, or to use virtualization technology (like snapshots) to obviate issues like that. Nice feature, but eh, not enough to switch.


Containers are really really neat. Lot of sys admins are excited about this. If you use VMware and start up several OS instances, then each guest OS will use 4GB RAM, and CPU, etc. With Containers, each guest will use 40MB and nil CPU. One guy booted 1.000 Containers on a server with 1GB RAM, it was extremely slow but it could be done. Try that with VMware.


Containers I've found to be the least useful. It's all one OS.


This Containers is the building block for virtualizing everything, the Network stack, etc. Everything is virtualized in Solaris 11. Create as many network cards as you want, create as many Containers as you want, etc - thus you can have lot of virtual servers in one Server. This is why Solaris11 is called "First Virtual OS" ever. In Linux, if you create a container, is everything else virtualized? The network stack? etc? No?

[/q]

With ESXi, KVM, Xen, yes, everything is virtualized. And honestly, it's much more flexible and useful than containers. Any OS, not just Solaris. Add as many network cards as you want. I can migrate a VM from one host to another live. Plenty of open source and closed source appliances for storage, firewalls, IPS/IDS, etc.

Sun made Solaris less relevant, and Oracle made it even less so (by closing it back up and abandoning OpenSolaris). It's a shame, but that's why I say 'meh' with Solaris.

Reply Parent Score: 2