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Open Solaris Desktop

2008-10-05 19:04:18.964429 by Michael 0 Comments
Tags: solaris unix sysadmin

I've recently switched to OpenSolaris on my desktop at work and I just wanted to write a bit about my experiences.


Installing the OS is about the same as any other unix system. Boot the CD, enter a host name, root password and select the drive you want to install to. One nice thing is that you can set up a ZFS mirror out of the box, if not you can easily mirror your pool later without having to mess around too much, one command takes care of it.

Hardware support:

All of the hardware on my computer was detected and loaded the proper drivers without me having to intervene. As long as your hardware is listed on the compatibility list you'll be fine. Setting up X with multiple monitor support is also very easy, just run the Nvidia settings app and configure your screens.


One issue I did have is that mp3 support isn't included as part of the default install, you have to download the codec package from Fluendo if you want mp3 support in totem or anything else that uses the gstreamer backend. Flash also requires a manual install, the plugin is pretty easy to set up however.


After using the system for a few weeks I'd have to say I'm impressed. If you have any experience at all with running a Linux desktop it shouldn't take long to adjust and you'll have access to zfs and dtrace which simply don't have equivalents in Linux. In short, give it a try, you might like it.

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