Home > Articles > Operating Systems, Server > Solaris

Managing Your Oracle Solaris Cluster Environment

This chapter covers many important aspects of an Oracle Solaris Cluster system's lifecycle. It begins by outlining some of the planning you need to do prior to installing the Oracle Solaris operating system on a cluster node. Next comes information about how to secure your newly installed system against attack. The options for installing the Solaris Cluster software are then covered, followed by information about the day-to-day tasks involved in managing and monitoring the cluster. The chapter concludes by showing how to add support for new applications for which there is no third-party agent from Oracle or the application vendor.
This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Installing the Oracle Solaris OS on a Cluster Node

You can install the Oracle Solaris OS in these ways:

  • Interactively using the installer program
  • With Solaris JumpStart to automate the process
  • With public domain or third-party automation tools such as JumpStart Enterprise Toolkit [JetWiki]

If you choose an automated option, then you can perform the installation using collections of Solaris packages or a Solaris Flash archive file that is created using the flarcreate command from a previous template installation (see the flarcreate(1M) man page) [FlarInstall].

If your root disk is not already protected by some form of hardware RAID, you should mirror it to protect your node against disk failure. You can protect your root disk using the bundled Solaris Volume Manager software or with the Oracle Solaris ZFS file system. ZFS is available only when you use the Solaris 10 OS. If you have a software license for Veritas Volume Manager, you can also use that to protect your root disk.

Solaris Live Upgrade eases the process of upgrading your systems. Solaris Live Upgrade is available in all Solaris releases beginning with the Solaris 8 OS. However, the combination of the Solaris 10 OS, ZFS, and Solaris Live Upgrade provides the simplest and most flexible upgrade option for your systems.

When choosing hostnames for your cluster nodes, you must ensure that they comply with RFC 1123 [RFC1123]. If you intend to install Solaris Cluster Geographic Edition, you must not use an "_" (underscore) in the hostnames. Other applications might place additional constraints on the hostnames. Changing a hostname after a cluster has been installed is a complex process and should be avoided, if possible.

Although these sections on installing the Solaris Cluster software cover many important points, they do not provide all the steps you need to follow. Therefore, you must consult the latest versions of the Oracle Solaris OS [S10InstallGuide] and the Solaris Cluster software [SCInstallGuide] installation guides.

Root Disk Partition Requirement for the Solaris Cluster Software

You can use either UFS or ZFS as the root (/) file system for a Solaris Cluster node. The way you partition your root disks depends on which file system you choose and whether you also use Solaris Volume Manager.

After installation of the Solaris Cluster software, each node has a 512-megabyte /global/.devices/node@X file system that is mounted globally (the X represents the node number). To achieve this configuration, you can allow the scinstall program to create a lofi-based file system for you that works for both UFS and ZFS root (/) file systems. Alternatively, if you use UFS for the root (/) file system, you can create and mount a 512-megabyte file system on /globaldevices and allow the scinstall program to reuse it for the /global/.devices/node@X file system.

If you intend to use Solaris Volume Manager, then you must create the main state replica databases. These databases also require separate disk partitions, which should be 32 megabytes in size. This partition is usually placed on slice 7 of the root disk. This can pose a problem if you are using ZFS for the root disk because the standard Solaris installation uses the entire disk for the root zpool, unless you pre-partition your disk before the installation process begins. You can achieve a root disk layout where slice 7 is 32 megabytes in size, and use a ZFS root (/) file system, if you install your system using JumpStart Enterprise Toolkit (JET). However, you must not use ZFS volumes (zvols) to store the Solaris Volume Manager state replica databases, as this configuration is not supported.

Because Solaris Volume Manager relies on a state replica majority (see the section "Solaris Volume Manager's State Replica Majority" in Chapter 1, "Oracle Solaris Cluster: Overview") to maintain data integrity if a disk failure occurs, you should assign slices from three separate, nonshared disks. If you do not have three separate slices available, you can place all of the replicas on a single disk as shown in the following example.

Example 4.1. Creating the Solaris Volume Manager Root State Replica Databases

Use the metadb command to create the Solaris Volume Manager root state replica databases.

# metadb -afc 3 c1t0d0s7
# metadb
        flags           first blk        block count
     a m  pc luo        16               8192             /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s7
     a    pc luo        8208             8192             /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s7
     a    pc luo        16400            8192             /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s7

If you use Veritas Volume Manager, you ideally use it only for shared disk management, and you use either Solaris Volume Manager or the Oracle Solaris ZFS file system to mirror your root disks.

Planning for Upgrades

After you have installed your cluster, you must maintain it through its lifecycle. Doing so inevitably requires that you install both Solaris and cluster patches. You might also perform more major changes such as upgrading to a new Solaris Cluster release. To minimize any disruption, you must plan ahead.

"Patching and Upgrading Your Cluster" describes in more detail the options for ongoing cluster maintenance. If you choose ZFS for your root disk, then the upgrade procedure is fairly straightforward because Solaris Live Upgrade can create an alternate boot environment on the existing root zpool. However, if you choose UFS, then you must have the same number of slices available as your existing root disk has, which usually means using a separate disk. However, if you have only a root partition, you can plan for future upgrades by setting aside a separate partition of the same size on the root disk.

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020