As far as I'm concerned, Solaris is a kick-ass OS. Forgive the lack of technical terms. It has amazing reliability, stability, and security. I mean really great security. It's targeted to servers and developers, so it's missing a lot of the fluff of major Linux distros - fluff that I happen to hate. The administration tools are wonderful. And between the new stuff in OpenSolaris (Solaris 11) - Dtrace, Zones, ZFS, etc., it sounds too good to be true (or too good to be free, at least).
- Sun Solaris How-To Guides - Dtrace, Containers, Live Upgrade, ZFS, Security, Administration, Service Management Facility
- Solaris OS Learning Center
I haven't played with it, but Solaris has a Live Upgrade feature that allows you to upgrade the whole OS (kernel and all) without rebooting.
The ZFS filesystem. There are some great docs about it, so I'll skip the technical stuff. The bottom line is that it seems to be able to solve the world's filesystem problems - dynamic partition sizing, optimization, the whole works.
The biggest feature, in my mind, is that it is pool-based. Instead of having predefined volumes, you define a volume within a pool. If you add another disk to a pool, all volumes in that pool are automatically resized (to your specifications) to make use of that additional space. Bottom line - there's no repartitioning.
A few cool features:
- easy setup of a ZFS volume as an iSCSI target
- easy filesystem snapshots
- RAID-Z allowing for single- or double-parity
- support for hot spares
- simple filesystem cloning
- support for creating ZFS clones when cloning a Zone
- ZFS diagnostics are included in the system-wide Fault Manager
- web-based management tool
- easy migration of a filesystem between systems
- fully transactional filesystem
- checksums and self-healing data (i.e. you can get the benefit of a hardware RAID controller in software)
- Solaris ZFS Administration Guide
- InfoWorld ZFS Video
- OpenSolaris.org ZFS Links
- ZFS Learning Center
- SolarisInternals.com ZFS Best Practices Guide
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Please be aware that this page is solely the opinion of its' author, Jason Antman. It is in no way endorsed by Sun Microsystems, Inc. or any affiliate thereof. There is no guarantee as to the correctness on any information on this page.