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Solaris Express Installation Guide: Planning for Installation and Upgrade
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Upgrading With Non-Global Zones

After the Solaris OS is installed, you can install and configure non-global zones. You can upgrade the Solaris OS when non-global zones are installed. If you have branded non-global zones installed, they are ignored during the upgrade process. Changes to accommodate systems that have non-global zones installed are summarized below.

  • For the Solaris interactive installation program, you can upgrade or patch a system when non-global zones are installed. The time to upgrade or patch might be extensive, depending on the number of non-global zones that are installed. For more information about installing with this program, see Chapter 2, Installing With the Solaris Installation Program (Tasks), in Solaris Express Installation Guide: Basic Installations.

  • For an automated JumpStart installation, you can upgrade or patch with any keyword that applies to an upgrade or patching. The time to upgrade or patch might be extensive, depending on the number of non-global zones that are installed. For more information about installing with this program, see Solaris Express Installation Guide: Custom JumpStart and Advanced Installations.

  • For Solaris Live Upgrade, you can upgrade or patch a system that contains non-global zones. If you have a system that contains non-global zones, Solaris Live Upgrade is the recommended upgrade program or program to add patches. Other upgrade programs might require extensive upgrade time, because the time required to complete the upgrade increases linearly with the number of installed non-global zones. If you are patching a system with Solaris Live Upgrade, you do not have to take the system to single-user mode and you can maximize your system's uptime. Changes to accommodate systems that have non-global zones installed are the following:

    • A new package, SUNWlucfg, is required to be installed with the other Solaris Live Upgrade packages, SUNWlur and SUNWluu.

    • Creating a new boot environment from the currently running boot environment remains the same with one exception. You can specify a destination slice for a shared file system within a non-global zone. This exception occurs under the following circumstances:

      • If on the current boot environment the zonecfg add fs command was used that created a separate file system for a non-global zone

      • If this separate file system resides on a shared file system, such as /zone/root/export

      To prevent this separate file system from being shared in the new boot environment, the lucreate command has changed to enable specifying a destination slice for a separate file system for a non-global zone. The argument to the -m option has a new optional field, zonename. This new field places the non-global zone's separate file system on a separate slice in the new boot environment. For more information on setting up a non-global zone with a separate file system, see zonecfg(1M).


      Note - By default, any file system other than the critical file systems (root (/), /usr, and /opt file systems) is shared between the current and new boot environments. Updating shared files in the active boot environment also updates data in the inactive boot environment. The /export file system is an example of a shared file system. If you use the -m option and the zonename option, the non-global zone's shared file system is copied to a separate slice and data is not shared. This option prevents non-global zone file systems that were created with the zonecfg add fs command from being shared between the boot environments.


    • Comparing boot environments is enhanced. The lucompare command now generates a comparison of boot environments that includes the contents of any non-global zone.

    • The lumount command now provides non-global zones with access to their corresponding separate file systems that exist on inactive boot environments. When the global zone administrator uses the lumount command to mount an inactive boot environment, the boot environment is mounted for non-global zones as well.

    • Listing file systems with the lufslist command is enhanced to display a list of file systems for both the global zone and the non-global zones.

For step-by-step instructions on using Solaris Live Upgrade when non-global zones are installed, see Chapter 9, Upgrading the Solaris OS on a System With Non-Global Zones Installed, in Solaris Express Installation Guide: Solaris Live Upgrade and Upgrade Planning.

Table 7-1 Limitations When Upgrading With Non-Global Zones

Program or Condition

Description

Solaris Flash archives

A Solaris Flash archive cannot be properly created when a non-global zone is installed. The Solaris Flash feature is not compatible with Solaris Zones partitioning technology. If you create a Solaris Flash archive, the resulting archive is not installed properly when the archive is deployed under these conditions:

  • The archive is created in a non-global zone.

  • The archive is created in a global zone that has non-global zones installed.

For more information about using Solaris Flash archives, see Solaris Express Installation Guide: Solaris Flash Archives (Creation and Installation).

Using a command that uses the -R option or equivalent must not be used in some situations.

Any command that accepts an alternate root (/) file system by using the -R option or equivalent must not be used if the following are true:

  • The command is run in the global zone.

  • The alternative root (/) file system refers to any path within a non-global zone.

An example is the -R root_path option to the pkgadd utility run from the global zone with a path to the root (/) file system in a non-global zone.

For a list of utilities that accept an alternate root (/) file system and more information about zones, see Restriction on Accessing A Non-Global Zone From the Global Zone in System Administration Guide: Solaris Containers-Resource Management and Solaris Zones.

ZFS file systems and non-global zones

If a non-global zone is on a ZFS file system, the upgrade process does not upgrade the non-global zone.

Backing Up Your System Before Performing an Upgrade With Zones

You should back up the global and non-global zones on your Solaris system before you perform the upgrade. For information about backing up a system with zones installed, see Chapter 26, Solaris Zones Administration (Overview), in System Administration Guide: Solaris Containers-Resource Management and Solaris Zones.

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