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Installing and Maintaining Solaris 8

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This chapter is from the book

Terms you'll need to understand:

  • Software clusters

  • Software groups

  • Packages

  • Patches

Techniques you'll need to master:

  • Installing Solaris 8

  • Adding and removing packages

  • Listing installed packages

  • Adding and removing patches

  • Listing installed patches

The first section of this chapter covers the Solaris 8 distribution. Next, installing the operating system is covered in detail. The last two sections summarize the commands for performing software package administration and patch administration. The Installation test objectives are covered in this chapter.

The Solaris 8 Distribution

Solaris 8 system and application software is delivered as collections of files and directories, referred to as packages. You can copy these packages onto the system from CD-ROM or magnetic tape as a single compressed file and uncompress them for installation.

Included with the package is information about the package, such as its title, storage requirements, and version. Also included are any custom scripts needed to properly install the software.

Sometimes system software is distributed in more than one package, but you need to distribute and install the packages as a unit. A collection of two or more related packages is referred to as a software cluster, a logical grouping of packages.

The Solaris 8 operating system is preconfigured into software groups consisting of different collections of software clusters and packages. The five software groups are shown in Table 3.1.

Table 3.1 Solaris 8 Software Groups

Software Group



Required operating system files

End-User System Support

Core plus windowing environments

Developer System Support

End-User plus development environment

Entire Distribution

Developer System plus enhanced features

Entire Distribution Plus OEM

Entire Distribution plus third-party hardware drivers


Some Solaris 8 documents refer to the operating system's preconfigured software groups as software configuration clusters or simply clusters. The term software cluster also refers to a collection of packages, so this reference can create confusion. This book uses the term software groups because it is the term used in the Solaris 8 Advanced Installation Guide.

The Entire Distribution Plus OEM group is available only for SPARC platforms.

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