OpenSolaris 2009.06 Released

The team at Sun behind OpenSolaris has unleashed OpenSolaris 2009.06 upon the world. This new release comes packed with new features, changes, improvements, and fixes, and is the first release of OpenSolaris for SPARC, adding support for UltraSPARC T1, T2 (Sun4v), and UltraSPARC II, III and IV (Sun4u). Read on for some of the improvements that stand out.

Starting with features meant for us home users first, the Time Slider feature in Nautilus has received a number of improvements and new features. Time Slider is, simply put, a front-end to the revision and snapshot features of ZFS, allowing easy access to these otherwise technical aspects of ZFS. New in this release is the ability to create a snapshot of your filesystem at any given moment, and you can now also delete individual snapshots at your leisure. The interface has also been polished up, and when looking under the hood, you’ll notice that they’ve multithreaded the entire thing, meaning that browsing directories with as many as 4000 snapshots (3000 years!) will cause no slowdown.

Codeina is a new utility in this release which allows you to easily install multimedia codecs, drawing them from the Fluendo store. Some of those are available for free, while others require you to pay for them. Also included in OpenSolaris 2009.06 is the Elisa media centre. It’s available in the repositories under SUNWgnome-media-center.

Moving on to the administrator side of things, OpenSolaris 2009.06 comes with improved support for CIFS. “OpenSolaris CIFS service now includes many new features such as host-based access control which allows a CIFS server to restrict access to specific clients by IP address, ACLs (access control lists) on shares, and client-side caching of offline files and synchronization when reconnected.” Better interoperability with Window is always a good thing, so many people will welcome these improvements.

Another feature which I’m sure some of you will be very happy with is Crossbow. “Crossbow network virtualization promotes more effective sharing of network resources and enhances the ability to consolidate server workloads. Using the basic building block of Virtual Network Interface Controllers (VNICs), virtual switches and interconnects, Virtual LANs (VLANs), plus OpenSolaris routing and firewall functionality, it is possible to consolidate an entire distributed computing environment on a single system for prototyping, testing and even deployment scenarios.”

Obviously, hardware and laptop support have been further improved as well. Get it from their download page.

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