Thursday, November 1, 2007

Project Indiana

In the same vein as Belenix which provides a live CD with an OpenSolaris base and XFCE or KDE as desktop environments, Project Indiana leverages the Distro Construction kit that was created for Belenix and provides a live CD with Gnome as the desktop environment.

It also supports a concept similar to pkg-get (as used with sunfreeware and blastwave on Solaris for many years) which is pkg:
pkg documentation

Now showing at a theather near you
It was released last night as a developer preview and you can get the preview ISO of Project Indiana here:

It differs from Belenix in that it does require a strict minimum of 512MB.

Further reading (links):

Project Indiana documentation

Release notes

Friday, October 26, 2007

Belenix freebie

Continuing the discussion on Belenix (see part 1)

“I cant burn the CD from the iso?”

And you used cdrw in Solaris? You probably tried:

bash$ cdrw -i belenix0.6.1.iso

Looking for CD devices...

Initializing device...done.

Size required (728453120 bytes) is greater than available space (681986048 bytes).

instead, try:

bash$ cdrw -C -i belenix0.6.1.iso

Looking for CD devices...

Initializing device...done.

Writing track 1...done.


Finalizing (Can take several minutes)...done.

“What makes Belenix so special?”

The biggest is that it supports UFS (of course, it is opensolaris afterall), ZFS, Fat16, Fat32, NTFS (really!) and EXT2 / EXT3. Wow. One key with Belenix and I can rescue a file from any x86 computer in this building (windows, solaris, linux) With ZFS that also means *bsd with zfs, mac os x with zfs, Linux FUSE ZFS... I dont know of any other solution out there currently that out of the box is capable of the same (well, maybe Indiana, but it is not out).

The other, as illustrated by my picture of the laptop with no hard disk, no cdrom and minimal memory, is that Belenix doesn't abuse of your resources. It will run with 256MB of ram. Of course, a live distro with 256MB with Xorg and XFCE doesn't leave much space. You can open a few terminals, text editor, run top (see ) and the like, but open Firefox and you need to be ultra patient. 320MB would make a big difference, while 512MB would be just right (and with the laptop back to its full 2GB configuration, wow). Or course, in text mode only, 256MB is overkill.

Also, combine my previous blog entry with memtest (replace /boot/... with /media/usbkeyname/boot/...), and you now have Belenix/memtest on USB.

“I want one!”

You can go and buy a 1GB key, download Belenix, burn it on CDROM and install it with usbdump. Or you can leave a comment on my blog and let me know how you have used Belenix on USB or plan on using it, and the best story in two weeks from now gets a free USB key preloaded with Belenix (november 9). I even pay shipping. Not a contest, just me giving personal stuff away for free to the person I choose, like MaryMaryQuiteContrary would say...

How cool is that? Start typing!

Further reading (links)

Where is the CDROM? Belenix Story

Where is your CDROM? A Belenix story

I have a Dell Lattitude D600 laptop. I've had it for a long while. You can see a picture of it (it is for a presentation for work). From that picture, a few questions might pop up in your mind. The first, I'm sure, might be:

“What OS is that?”

It's obviously not Mac OS or Windows. It is also not Linux. Thanks for playing. So what is it? Well, hint #1, it says XFCE Menu at the bottom of the screen. It also says “ innovating on opensolaris” in the middle. More on that later. Next question, please.

“Why did you call it Theremin?”

You have good eyes! My laptops have always been named Theremin. But it particularly applies to this one. It is a laptop with WIFI and WWAN, so it is really totally wireless. I'm also a big fan (and composer) of electronic music. Theremin is the french spelling of Termen, as in “Lev Sergeyevich Termen”, the Russian inventor more commonly known as Léon Thérémin. One of his invention is the Theremin musical instrument. Think of it as a synthesizer without a keyboard. You control the pitch and volume by moving your hands around antennas, wirelessly. Wireless.

“Why do you have spare components next to it?”

Actually, they are not spare at all. I removed the DVD/CDROM, the hard disk and one of the 2 memory DIMM. I even replaced the DIMM left by a smaller one, 256MB. It is as bare as I can make it.

“So how is it running an OS?”

It is booting off of a USB key. A 2GB Lexar Firefly. This thing is SMALL, but comes in capacity up to 8GB. Truly physically small enough to fit on your key chain.

“And what else?”

Belenix 0.6.1. This has already been out since mid July, but I've only gotten around to using it for the past few weeks. Belenix is an opensolaris distribution. It has KDE and XFCE, all the good stuff from Solaris like ZFS, zones and DTrace. Oh, it also has Gnu Parted. And Compiz. And Koffice. It is a live CD distribution, similar to, say, Knoppix. To use it, you simply download the ISO, burn it on CD and boot that CD.

“Ah, but isn't it hard to get it on a USB key?”

To get on the USB, you log in as root, insert your USB key (1GB or more, I used a 2GB in my case) and from the command line, you type:


That is it. No other step. You are done. You can now reboot the machine and if you have boot from USB as the first choice in your boot order, it will boot from the USB key and come up with a GRUB screen.

Yay! See also Moinak Ghosh's blog.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Fun with GRUB: memtest

So you want to add a memtest entry to your Solaris GRUB menu at boot time?

Download memtest from


[] gzcat memtest86-3.3.tar.gz | tar xvf -
[] cd memtest86-3.3
[] cp precomp.bin /boot/platform/i86pc/kernel/memtest
[] chmod a+x /boot/platform/i86pc/kernel/memtest

Edit /boot/grub/menu.lst and add at the bottom:

title Solaris memtest86
kernel /boot/platform/i86pc/kernel/memtest

When you reboot you will have the option to run Solaris, Solaris failsafe or, now, memtest.

Let me know if you are interested in more GRUB tricks.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

NWAM and zones

Of course, NWAM wont help me at all with zones on a laptop, or will it? If my wired interface is not plumbed, I cant tie a zone to physical bge0 (my network card on my laptop). Before NWAM (network/physical:nwam) I had found a way to assign a secondary IP to bge0 and that worked to some extent. Basically, you would define an addif to /etc/hostname.bge0 and bge0:1 would come up, with bge0 plumbed or not, and the zones would be on that same network.

Let's try. I unplug the laptop from the network and reboot, so that bge0 is nowhere to be seen. is one of the reserved private B class (up to that is available, with plenty of breathing room (instead of potentially dealing with multiple C classes). Adding to /etc/hosts globalzone zone1 zone2 etc.

and adding to /etc/hostname.bge0

addif globalzone

Reboot, and... it didn't work. Hmmm. Maybe the standard way to assign IPs and NWAM can coexist.

# svcs | grep network

This shows many services, but two that are dealing with physical.

# svcs | grep physical

online 12:46:34 svc:/network/physical:nwam
disabled 12:46:37 svc:/network/physical:default

# svcadm enable network/physical:default

# svcs | grep physical
online 12:46:34 svc:/network/physical:nwam
online 14:48:46 svc:/network/physical:default

# ifconfig -a

bge0:1: flags=201000843 mtu 1500 index 2
inet netmask ffff0000 broadcast

We are up, yay! We can now proceed at the installation of zones on a laptop without worry about network access (very useful for demos on the road).

In the next blogs I'll show why zones are so cool for a desktop or laptop (it's not just for servers, you know). I'll also show how you can gain (real) network access from a zone.


Waiting for the newest Developer Edition, I'm running a relatively recent Solaris Express, B66 (selected the Developer Edition option at boot time). Coming from B57 or so, it's a big boost for laptops. Why is that? NWAM. No, not a new WHAM produced by Maurice Starr, but simply NetWork Auto Magic, an opensolaris project.

Imagine the following. You install B66, networked, with full intent to unconfig the network card and install something like inetmenu, wireless network drivers, write some scripts etc so you can switch between at home wired, at home wireless, at work wired, at work wireless, on the road wired, on the road wireless etc.

Then, you finally login (forgetting to plug in your wired network) and are greeted by a dialog showing you all the various wireless access points and asking you to choose which one you want to connect to. Whoa! This is a cold install and everything was detected, and now this dialog is telling me that I dont need inetmenu and all those scripts to attempt to connect to a network?

iwi0 shows up under ifconfig. I decide to instead go with wired, plug the cable and bge0 is brought up, detects DHCP, gets a new IP and instantly i'm on the wired network.

Pretty cool! Wired or wireless, this pretty much "just works (tm)". Couldn't have been an easier experience.


Thursday, September 6, 2007


From time to time, the marketing team at Sun change their graphics on the Homepage. When the image with the sunflowers appeared (, I noticed that the time to load was long. And every time. But I had other things to take care of.

Finally, this morning I sent a message to the Webmaster, mentioning that the size of the image is too large.

The same image by regional sites:

USA (nla) ~50KB-60KB
Canada (English) 49KB
Canada (French) 51KB
Spain 40KB
Latin America 49KB
France 250KB !

I did not expect anything, so imagine my surprise when a short time later, I receive an email which tells me that the issue is transmitted to the technical team. Furthermore, less than 10 minutes later it was corrected (60KB now)!

Now, why so much difference between the different sites? More than likely, each one uses a different software, a different ratio etc.

How can you prepare an image for the Web with Solaris?

With Imagemagick, included with Solaris (/usr/sfw/bin):
convert b1_geo_eco_master.png -quality 50% b1_crushed.jpg

50% is usually very good for the Web, but if not, you can use -quality 60% or more (the size goes up with the quality).

Another option, with Imagemagick found at Sunfreeware (pkgadd -d imagemagick-6.3.0-sol10-x86-local) or Blastwave (pkg-get -i imagemagick):
convert b1_geo_eco_master.png -strip -quality 50% b1_crushed.jpg

The -strip option is new (not found in Imagemagick 5.x) and remove all profiles and meta-data that the image may have due to programs like Gimp or Photoshop and color profiles that digital cameras tag to images.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Sun Studio 12 is now available

The Sun Studio 12 software suite delivers high-performance, optimizing C, C++, and Fortran compilers. Studio 12 marks a really important jump from Sun Studio 11 as far as the environment itself is concerned. This is based on the more recent Netbeans 5.5+ and is an incredible tool. Through the Sun Studio Express program, and then through the Early Access program, I was able to experience firsthand all the enhancements and new features over the course of the last 5 months. The performance of the resulting compiled applications is really phenomenal, even on 64 bit AMD and Intel processors.

It is now the development environment to beat when it comes to native applications, under Solaris or Linux. Although there are currently no version under windows, I wouldn't be surprised if one did materialize. We've ditched MS Windows and MS Visual Studio on all desktops, and now enjoy increased productivity. Sun Studio 11 did provide the performance, but it didn't provide the level of user friendliness that Sun Studio 12 now provides. It is not perfect, but it is a really solid product.

Sun is on a roll, providing once again best in class software, but at a surprisingly low cost: free.

In the coming weeks, I will mention some specific tools or aspects of Studio 12, stay tuned.

As of today, you can download it here:
Sun Studio Download

or request a media kit here, for free (I will have to confirm if this includes the just released Sun Studio 12 or 11):

Friday, May 25, 2007

World's most ethical companies

Sun Microsystems made the cut, along with 3 others in the field of computers and semiconductors (the others are NEC, Texas Instruments and Xerox).

I tip my hat to Sun and to its employees, you well deserve the praise.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

How compatible is your computer?

If you run Windows XP home, XP Pro, Linux (Red Hat, Fedora, Ubuntu, Suse), Solaris 10 or Solaris Express this tool will tell you what will work or wont work in Solaris Express Developer Edition:

Sun Solaris Express tool (WARNING, V1.0, see note below for V2.0) (Java web start)

If you are:
Download Solaris
or media:
DVD (free)

Note: a new version of SDD is available at:

Click accept, then click Sun Device Detection Tool 2.0, English, run and select Solaris 10 8/07 or Solaris Express Developer Edition 9/07.

Muy Bien, Sun!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Solaris in music and image

We are blogging on a light note today!

In 1983, Radio-Canada broadcasted "The Mysterious Cities of Gold" (in French), a France, Luxemburg, Japan coproduction.

In this animated series was found an interesting, solar powered ship, the Solaris.

A musical theme by Haim Saban and Shuki Lévy was found throughout the episodes, including those with the Solaris.

Original soundtrack:
Majestueux Solaris (MP3)

Remake #1:
Majestueux Solaris A (MP3)

Remake #2:
Majestueux Solaris B (MP3)

It works with RealPlayer (Solaris 10 or Nevada), or with Rhythmbox (Solaris Nevada).

See for more details.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Solaris Express Developer Edition (2/07)

Well, it is finally available. I had mentionned before on SunQuebecthat the next release of Solaris Express would be interesting, and the reason is: the DVD now includes Sun Studio 11 and Netbeans 5.5. So it is now a complete environment.

It can be found here:

This build also includes firefox 2, star office 8, and Sun is trying to appeal to LAMP developers with SAMP (Solaris, Apache, MySQL et PHP). Sun Web Server 7 is available and Postgresql has been included for a while now, so it's not a huge addition, but it makes for a pretty complete distribution.

Currently it is only x86/x64, but you can get equivalent functionality under Sparc with Solaris Express Community Edition B55 and above. I have B56, but B57 is now available.

The next Community Edition to keep an eye out for will be B60. This will include bootable ZFS for x86/x64, and I would guess it might appear in Solaris Express 4/07 if I understand the revision cycle, altough I now read that Solaris Express will now be quarterly so that might be 5/07.


Monday, February 12, 2007

Secure By Default

Learn to love SBD.

When doing the initial install of Solaris 10, select the secure by default (SBD) option. If this is Solaris Nevada, no option is given, it will be (mostly) secure by default. If the install is an upgrade, then it will not change the previous install. To activate the secure profile, run the following:

# /usr/sbin/netservices limited

Note that this will only allow local smtp and rpc, and only ssh remotely, so be careful if you are on a production box, everything else is tight.

Why should you care? Because you are safe from the latest Solaris 10 hack. If you haven't heard of it yet, you might want to search the web and learn more. Basically, it enables an attacker to telnet into a Solaris 10 machine.

I decided to head over the OpenGrok OpenSolaris source code browser, and look at login.c:
In login.c:

525 /*
526 * validate user
527 */
528 /* we are already authenticated. fill in what we must, then continue */
529 if (fflag) {
531 if ((pwd = getpwnam(user_name)) == NULL) {
532 audit_error = ADT_FAIL_VALUE_USERNAME;
534 log_bad_attempts();
535 (void) printf("Login failed: unknown user '%s'.\n",
536 user_name);
537 login_exit(1);
538 }
540 } else {
541 /*
542 * Perform the primary login authentication activity.
543 */
544 login_authenticate();
545 }

So as long as the f flag is set, it never does the login_authenticate(). If that option was somewhat injected in a string...

1399 case 'f':
1400 /*
1401 * Must be root to bypass authentication
1402 * otherwise we exit() as punishment for trying.
1403 */
1404 if (getuid() != 0 || geteuid() != 0) {
1405 audit_error = ADT_FAIL_VALUE_AUTH_BYPASS;
1407 login_exit(1); /* sigh */
1409 }
1410 /* save fflag user name for future use */
1411 SCPYL(user_name, optarg);
1412 fflag = B_TRUE;
1413 break;

Quite the punishment for trying, no? This is similar to an old rlogin issue.

Sun Studio now has a thread analyzer that does race detection and other similar complex detection of problems in your code. Maybe security hole detection should be next? :)

So why did this come back?

54 * -f : This flag was introduced by PSARC 1995/039 in support
55 * of Kerberos. But it's not used by Sun's Kerberos implementation.
56 * It is however employed by zlogin(1), since it allows one to tell
57 * login: "This user is authenticated." In the case of zlogin that's
58 * true because the zone always trusts the global zone.

So if you are running Solaris secure by default and have not re-enabled telnet, you are safe.

Learn to love SBD.



For Tpatches and details from the sausage factory, see this blog:
Alan Hargreaves - the in.telnetd exploit


I was hoping for an integrated multi language support with blogger / blogspot, but the only way I've found is to create 3 different blogs, and add a list of links to it. Next step is to figure out how to match posts and URLs. Looks like it is going to take some javascript to make this work right.

Anybody been there, done that?

Mirrored Laptop with Compact Flash

An alternative to the USB stick to have a mirrored storage on a laptop is to use a PC card compact flash adapter, along with a compact flash card. These cards are available currently in capacities of up to 16GB, but are much more expensive than USB sticks.

For the purpose of demonstrating the concept, I used my old IBM microdrive (340MB) in CFII format. I think the largest ever made was 6 or 8GB, but with solid state cards capable of higher density, that is probably the end of the line for that technology. Still, I've had it for about 7 years now, so it has proven surprisingly reliable (unlike the iPaq this was in).

So, all you have to do is insert the PC card and Solaris hald (Solaris Nevada B56) picks up the microdrive, mounts it and is shown on the desktop.

bash-3.00# df -h
Filesystem size used avail capacity Mounted on
/dev/dsk/c1t0d0s2 3.6G 3.6G 0K 100% /media/SOL_11_X86
/dev/dsk/c8d0p0:1 341M 16K 341M 1% /media/MICRODRIVE

I then unmounted the microdrive. Assuming you have a free slice 7 on your internal hard disk (make sure you have an empty, pre-allocated slice), then you would do:

bash-3.00# zpool create internal mirror c0d0s7 c8d0p0
invalid vdev specification
use '-f' to override the following errors:
mirror contains devices of different sizes
bash-3.00# zpool create -f internal mirror c0d0s7 c8d0p0

bash-3.00# df -h
Filesystem size used avail capacity Mounted on
/dev/dsk/c1t0d0s2 3.6G 3.6G 0K 100% /media/SOL_11_X86
internal 304M 24K 304M 1% /internal

bash-3.00# zpool status
pool: internal
state: ONLINE
scrub: none requested

internal ONLINE 0 0 0
mirror ONLINE 0 0 0
c0d0s7 ONLINE 0 0 0
c8d0p0 ONLINE 0 0 0

errors: No known data errors

We can then proceed to set compression and mountpoint just like in the previous case we went through.

Friday, February 9, 2007

Stick to ZFS, or The laptop with a mirrored drive

My everyday laptop is a Dell Latitude D600. It's old but it has served me well. It started its life with Windows 2000 on its hard disk. I switched back and forth between Solaris 10 and Windows 2000 (Windows XP was just too frustrating for me and at some point I've triple booted Mandriva, Suse or Ubuntu), until I decided to go Solaris Express (aka Nevada, aka what will become 11) which is the base anyway for OpenSolaris. Since Nevada B53, I've never looked back. I removed all other partitions and dedicated it to Solaris.

Now, most laptop can only take one drive. This is the case with the Latitude.

Stick to ZFS

Assuming you have a slice available on your laptop hard disk and you have a memory stick, a lot of fun can be had with ZFS.

This came about as I was pondering about making my laptop a little more safe for travelling. If I lost a hard drive, I could buy a new one and then just reinstall Solaris. The latest Solaris (B56) even has a Sun Studio and Netbeans when you select Solaris Express Developer at install time. Email, source and other stuff are remotely stored on a server etc. The only issue is all my documents that I'm saving in the local user/Documents folder (I am not always online). Yes, I do a backup to an external USB device, but I would like for this to be transparent. I tought, ZFS could do this, along with a USB stick. There are some sticks that are so small, you can leave them in the USB port when putting the laptop in its bag.

The laptop with a mirrored drive.

So here is the recipe. I insert my memory stick and check its logical node:

bash-3.00# rmformat
Looking for devices...
1. Logical Node: /dev/rdsk/c4t0d0p0
Physical Node: /pci@0,0/pci8086,4541@1d,1/storage@1/disk@0,0
Connected Device: KINGSTON USB DRIVE 1.12
Device Type: Removable
Bus: USB
Size: 246.0 MB
Access permissions:

Above is my test memory stick. My internal disk is c0d0:

bash-3.00# format
Searching for disks...done

0. c0d0

I already know that slice 7 is unassigned but allocated and free. If I didn't know, I'd select the drive in format, then enter the partition mode and print the partition table. If the boot disk partition needs to be edited, you'll need to do that by booting Solaris from CD/DVD.

So, let us create a mirror:

bash-3.00# zpool create -f stick mirror c0d0s7 c4t0d0p0
bash-3.00# zpool list
stick 240M 89K 240M 0% ONLINE -
usb 298G 182G 116G 60% ONLINE -
bash-3.00# zfs create stick/Documents
bash-3.00# zfs set compression=on stick/Documents
bash-3.00# zfs set mountpoint=/export/home/fdion/Documents stick/Documents
bash-3.00# cp /export/home/fdion/mp3/PeteNamlook\ and\ MixMaster\ Morris/*.mp3 .

While the copy was going on (Pete Namlook and Mixmaster Morris' Dreamfish album), I pulled the usb stick. Copy completed without problem:

bash-3.00# zfs list
stick 97.9M 110M 24.5K /stick
stick/Documents 97.7M 110M 97.7M /export/home/fdion/Documents

bash-3.00# zpool list
stick 240M 97.9M 142M 40% DEGRADED -
usb 298G 182G 116G 60% ONLINE -

The mirror is degraded tough. Let's check the full status:

bash-3.00# zpool status
pool: stick
status: One or more devices could not be opened. Sufficient replicas exist for
the pool to continue functioning in a degraded state.
action: Attach the missing device and online it using 'zpool online'.
scrub: none requested

stick DEGRADED 0 0 0
mirror DEGRADED 0 0 0
c0d0s7 ONLINE 0 0 0
c4t0d0p0 UNAVAIL 0 306 0 cannot open

errors: No known data errors

Let's bring it online:

bash-3.00# zpool online stick c4t0d0p0
Bringing device c4t0d0p0 online

This took a little bit of time as the mirror finished fixing itself. Am I done? Let's check the status:

bash-3.00# zpool status
pool: stick
state: ONLINE
status: One or more devices has experienced an unrecoverable error. An
attempt was made to correct the error. Applications are unaffected.
action: Determine if the device needs to be replaced, and clear the errors
using 'zpool clear' or replace the device with 'zpool replace'.
scrub: resilver completed with 0 errors on Fri Feb 9 14:22:09 2007

stick ONLINE 0 0 0
mirror ONLINE 0 0 0
c0d0s7 ONLINE 0 0 0
c4t0d0p0 ONLINE 0 306 0

errors: No known data errors

bash-3.00# zpool clear stick c4t0d0p0
bash-3.00# zpool status
pool: stick
state: ONLINE
scrub: resilver completed with 0 errors on Fri Feb 9 14:22:09 2007

stick ONLINE 0 0 0
mirror ONLINE 0 0 0
c0d0s7 ONLINE 0 0 0
c4t0d0p0 ONLINE 0 0 0

errors: No known data errors

Alright, everything is ok now. Just a recap of what I've done up to now:

bash-3.00# zpool history stick
History for 'stick':
2007-02-09.14:08:34 zpool create -f stick mirror c0d0s7 c4t0d0p0
2007-02-09.14:10:54 zfs create stick/Documents
2007-02-09.14:11:06 zfs set compression=on stick/Documents
2007-02-09.14:11:59 zfs set mountpoint=/export/home/fdion/Documents stick/Documents
2007-02-09.14:20:14 zpool online stick c4t0d0p0
2007-02-09.14:25:26 zpool clear stick c4t0d0p0

Pretty slick. Let's export and load this in another computer.

bash-3.00# zpool export stick

On another machine, I go and plug the memory stick in and:

bash-3.00# zpool import stick
cannot mount '/export/home/fdion/Documents': directory is not empty

Ah, yes, that's an issue, but we are just testing. I probably should have mounted a different user.

bash-3.00# zfs set mountpoint=/export/home/fdlaptop/Documents stick/Documents
bash-3.00# zpool export stick
bash-3.00# zpool import stick

Data is there, everything is fine. But, how does it look from ZFS standpoint?

bash-3.00# zpool status
pool: stick
status: One or more devices could not be opened. Sufficient replicas exist for
the pool to continue functioning in a degraded state.
action: Attach the missing device and online it using 'zpool online'.
scrub: resilver completed with 0 errors on Fri Feb 9 14:38:56 2007

stick DEGRADED 0 0 0
mirror DEGRADED 0 0 0
c0d0s7 UNAVAIL 0 0 0 cannot open
c4t0d0p0 ONLINE 0 0 0

errors: No known data errors

This is as expected. Let's export again:

bash-3.00# zpool export stick

I put the stick back in the laptop, then

bash-3.00# zpool import stick
bash-3.00# zpool status
pool: stick
state: ONLINE
scrub: resilver completed with 0 errors on Fri Feb 9 14:41:42 2007

stick ONLINE 0 0 0
mirror ONLINE 0 0 0
c0d0s7 ONLINE 0 0 0
c4t0d0p0 ONLINE 0 0 0

errors: No known data errors

Impressive, no?

bash-3.00# zfs list
stick 97.9M 110M 24.5K /stick
stick/Documents 97.7M 110M 97.7M /export/home/fdlaptop/Documents

BTW, I did have compression enabled, but since I copied MP3 files, I expect no compression whatsoever:

bash-3.00# zfs get compressratio stick/Documents
stick/Documents compressratio 1.00x -

Sure enough. I then copied 20M of office documents and pdfs and removed the mp3 files:

bash-3.00# zfs get compressratio stick/Documents
stick/Documents compressratio 3.53x -

At 3.5x and small USB sticks available in 8GB, that's potentially 28GB mirrored! Currently, the 8 GB are a bit too high, but 4GB is <$80 (I've seen as low as $40). In the newer Solaris builds, a mirror can be reverted back to a non mirrored zone: bash-3.00# zpool detach stick c4t0d0p0

I pulled the stick out.

bash-3.00# zpool status
pool: stick
state: ONLINE
scrub: resilver completed with 0 errors on Fri Feb 9 14:41:42 2007

stick ONLINE 0 0 0
c0d0s7 ONLINE 0 0 0

errors: No known data errors

I now am back to a non mirrored mode. To recreate:

bash-3.00# zpool attach stick c0d0s7 c4t0d0p0

The only issue is if the two devices are not exactly the same size (or the memory stick is smaller than the hard disk slice), you will get:

cannot attach c4t0d0p0 to c0d0s7: device is too small

Just something to keep in mind.

First post

Well, I keep having to restart my blog, maybe I should really host it. At any rate, this blog is about my experience at using Sun Solaris as my operating system on the desktop (and laptop, and server etc).

J'espère aussi avoir une version française, quasi-simultané.

Aprendo también español, yo es pues traducir este blog en esta lengua. (work in progress as can be seen :)