Friday, December 09, 2005

A380 Office

A380 Office
Originally uploaded by Naddsy.

Whenever Sam asks to show her some new photos I am looking for some group at Flickr we are going through slide show. Today she wanted to see some planes. And look what we found ! That's an A380 flight deck. Incredible ! The joyflightstick on the side and the keyboard in front of the pilot ! Can they run Solaris on it ? Anyone has an idea what kind of software do they run there ?

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Good morning b28 !

It's a beautiful sunny morning here in Israel and SXCR b28 is out. The DVD version is out too.

Update: b28 adds these new packages

system SUNWdcaf DCA Crypto Accelerator (usr)
system SUNWdcar DCA Crypto Accelerator (Root)
system SUNWima Solaris IMA Software Initiator Plugin
system SUNWimac Solaris IMA Common Library
system SUNWimacr Solaris IMA Common Library (Root)
system SUNWimar Solaris IMA Software Initiator Plugin (Root)
system SUNWpd PCI Drivers
system SUNWuksp USB Keyspan serial driver
system SUNWuprl Prolific PL2303 USB-to-serial driver
application SUNWzfsg ZFS Administration for Sun Java(TM) Web Console


Saturday, December 03, 2005

1st IOSUG meeting

On Thursday, Dec 1, Israel OpenSolaris User Group got together for the first time. It was very good to see all the people that came. The gathering wasn't that big - 10 guys overall - but it is the quality that matters, not the quantity :) Sun Microsystems Israel hosted the meeting (great many thanks to Malcolm Kavalsky for taking care of the place and the pizza !).
We spent time talking about what's going on with OpenSolaris and discussing what can we do (bearing in mind specific local requirements - Hebrew support, etc) It needs to be mentioned that Israel computer market dominated quite seriously by the Evil Empire and the interoperability with their product is very essential when it comes to deploying a UNIX solution.
All in all we managed to create nice and family-style atmosphere as can be seen on the photos. Thanks for coming to all the people !


Thursday, December 01, 2005

OpenSolaris haiku*

It is December 1, 2005.
And gate is closed for b29.
b28, when will it see the light ?

*) I know it is not a real haiku, but it supposed to be funny :)


Saturday, November 19, 2005

Bringing Microsoft webcore fonts to Solaris Desktop

There are not so many things from Microsoft that I like. In fact there is, probably, only one thing - webcore font set. Verdana looks great in the browser. And for those who read Hebrew web sites it is almost impossible to view them with other fonts - they are all created using Verdana fonts. So a couple of day ago, when I installed Solaris on my laptop I decided to get these fonts working.
The fonts used to be available from Microsoft' web site for free download. However, at some point they removed the files. I am not sure what the legal status of these fonts today, but you can download them from a number of places. I've got mine here.

So if someone wants to do it here is the recipe.

1. Download the fonts archive and open it, say in /var/tmp
2. Create directory /usr/share/fonts/webcore and /usr/share/doc/webcore-fonts
3. Move fonts from webcore-fonts/fonts to /usr/share/fonts/webcore
4. Move docs from webcore-fonts/doc to /usr/share/doc/webcore-fonts
5. TrueType fonts need fonts.scale file. If you have ttmkfdir utility use it to create it. Otherwise get the file from here. Put the file into /usr/share/fonts/webcore
6. Run mkfontdir -
/usr/openwin/bin/mkfontdir /usr/share/fonts/webcore

7. Tell your fc-cache where to find these fonts.
7a. Put local.conf into /etc/fonts
7b. If you use Blastwave put it also in /opt/csw/etc/fontconfig

8. Restart the fc-cache to make sure it picks up new fonts.
8a. svcadm restart fc-cache
8b. /etc/init.d/cswfconfig start

Now you may want to restart your browser to reconfigure it for using Verdana. The example here shows my Firefox configuration. I have to add that these fonts look really good on laptop 1024x768 LCD screen.

Also I am not an expert in font configuration, so if you know a simpler or cleaner way of installing fonts, please let me know.


Friday, November 18, 2005

B27, ZFS, iwi, Athlon X2, etc

So many things happened this week - Miluim (military reserve service), build 27 released (ZFS), wireless drivers for Intel chipset finally hit the street (finally dumped FC4 from my laptop and installed Solaris), Athlon 64 X2 arrived for my office machine. And finally caught a flu at the end of the week :( Too many things to handle... The good thing, however, is that I writing this blog entry on my IBM ThinkPad T43 running Solaris Express B27 with iwi wireless driver - the only thing that I really miss is Skype.


Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Solaris Express Community Edition b27a

Build 27 seems to be available. Note that files are named sol-nv-b27a-... Is it a respin of original build 27 ? Quick package list diff shows ZFS and Realtek gigabit driver were added.
Installing it right now on my new Athlon X2 machine...

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Installing Solaris on FC storage with MPxIO

This evening I got another IBM Blade server HS20 with FC HBA. I wanted to install Solaris on it and suddenly I realized that it is a great opportunity to test install/boot from FC storage. Fortunately I had a DS4300 storage array connected to the system with some spare space left on one of its volume groups. I tried that kind of installation about a year ago, but until new boot was integrated into Solaris booting from FC HBA had little chances to success.
So I booted the Blade from the CDROM and it readily presented the FC disk as a choice for the installation. It worth noting that DS4300 is connected via two controllers, so MPxIO merged two hardware nodes into one virtual. This very long name c5t600A0B800019D82F000014804368A7C0d0 is the name of the disk based on its GUID rather then on WWPN. DS4300 is an Active/Standby box, however MPxIO supports these kind of controller (Engenio-based) pretty well. So the installation went ahead and I went to drink tea. 10 minutes later it was over and after reboot I enabled the BIOS on QLogic FC HBA card and set the FC node and LUN to boot from. That's was it. Everything just played happily along.

Here it is after the reboot:
# uname -a
SunOS b7 5.11 snv_25 i86pc i386 i86pc

And look where the root filesystem is mounted -
# df -h /
Filesystem size used avail capacity Mounted on
14G 2.7G 11G 20% /

Now, what constitutes that virtual disk
# luxadm disp /dev/rdsk/c5t600A0B800019D82F000014804368A7C0d0s2
DEVICE PROPERTIES for disk: /dev/rdsk/c5t600A0B800019D82F000014804368A7C0d0s2
Vendor: IBM
Product ID: 1722-600
Revision: 0520
Serial Num: 1T53176260
Unformatted capacity: 16384.000 MBytes
Write Cache: Enabled
Read Cache: Enabled
Minimum prefetch: 0x100
Maximum prefetch: 0x100
Device Type: Disk device

Controller /dev/cfg/c3
Device Address 200600a0b819d830,0
Host controller port WWN 2100000d6050ec96
Class primary
Controller /dev/cfg/c3
Device Address 200700a0b819d830,0
Host controller port WWN 2100000d6050ec96
Class secondary

Overall impression: very smooth integration of FC multipathing into boot subsystem. Many thanks to all the Sun' engineers involved with this framework.


Thursday, October 06, 2005

Skype into WWOSUG Conf Call

I am typing this while being on World Wide OpenSolaris User Group conf call. Skype made our life much easier. The only thing is missing is Solaris Skype client. (And no, I am not running Windows, I run FC4 on my laptop)

Monday, October 03, 2005

OpenSolaris <pilot member> T-shirt has arrived !

Today is "Erev Rosh HaShana" - Jewish New Year Eve - one of the two biggest Jewish holidays. And right today around 2:00 PM doorbell chimed and a FedEx courier appeared with a box. That was an OpenSolaris T-shirt. A special one - <pilot member> edition. A perfect gift for the holiday!

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Nevada b23 on IBM Blade HS20 or trading swap for DVD

Well, I recently started at new place. There are many Linuxes here and quite few Solarises. Exactly one. And I had an interesting experience installing Solaris Nevada b23 on it. The machine is a IBM Blade Server HS20 (Nice thing, BTW). The DVD it equipped with is conected via USB and trust me - it is slooow. So when I installed b22 on it a week ago I just burned CDROM 1 of 4 and did a minimal installation. Now, when b23 is out I downloaded all 4 images and setup_install_server'ed it into this machine. At this point I realized that it would be not so simple to upgrade this machine - I didn't want to go through CDROM installation once again (I didn't even had 4 blank media for burning all the images!). And there is some weird problem with mounting NFS share from Linux on Solaris. To make it worth I was running out of time on that specific evening. So I had to come up with some idea pronto. And here is what I did:
I released swap partition (~ 2GB - I was lucky!), newfs it and copied the installation image into it. Then I booted off CD1 and when it asked for starting the installation I umounted the CDROM and mounted my ex-swap partition on /cdrom. Then I continued with installation and choose [currently mounted] swap partition as "preserved" and not mounted anywhere. That appeared to be enough. The installation went happilly on and I went home. Next morning I found system installed.

And here is what prtdiag tells about it :

# prtdiag
System Configuration: IBM IBM eServer BladeCenter HS20 -[8832M1X]-
BIOS Configuration: IBM -[BSE120AUS-1.07]- 09/27/2004

==== Processor Sockets ====================================

Version Location Tag
-------------------------------- --------------------------
Intel Xeon Socket 1 CPU 1
Intel Xeon Socket 2 CPU 2

==== Memory Device Sockets ================================

Type Status Set Device Locator Bank Locator
------- ------ --- ------------------- --------------------
DDR in use 1 DIMM1 Slot 1
DDR in use 1 DIMM2 Slot 2
DDR in use 2 DIMM3 Slot 3
DDR in use 2 DIMM4 Slot 4

==== On-Board Devices =====================================
Ethernet 1 Broadcom 5704 Ethernet Controller
Ethernet 2 Broadcom 5704 Ethernet Controller
IBM Automatic Server Restart - Integrated System Management Processor
Q-Logic FibreChannel Card

==== Upgradeable Slots ====================================

ID Status Type Description
--- --------- ---------------- ----------------------------

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Nevada B21 on Dell Latitude D610

I am running Nevada on my laptop (Dell Latitude D610) for quite some time now. I think I started with build 17 or so and upgraded it with each new build released as Solaris Community Express. Every time I tried an upgrade I had problem with network boot. The pxegrub loaded from the boot server claimed that there is no network interface (how ironically!). So I ended up with a bunch of Solaris x86 1/4 disks (one for each build). I booted off the CDROM and then chose NFS as a repository. Worked well, but made me feel dummy. Build 21 changed this completely. pxegrub loaded and quickly discovered ethernet and continued to the boot menu. At this point I was happy and started the installation/upgrade anxiously. There were unpleasant surprise down the road, nonetheless. When it came to X autoconfiguration it probed Intel 915 embedded graphics chipset and failed the test color screen. In previous build that step was easy and worked. Well, you could choose any resolution as long as it is 800x600. Apparently, after the installation when Xorg is overtaking the job it displays normal 1024x768, but during the installation Xsun is limited to 800x600. The workaround turned out to be simple - VESA 915 nicely presented by kdmconfig. Same 800x600 resolution and you have your system ready for install or upgrade. Nothing special after that point.
There was no public info on what fixes went into build 21, so there could be some lurking features. No new packages, however, comparing to build 20.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Leaving Cloverleaf

Every once in a while it happens to most of us - leaving the job for another one. Seems like it is time for me to do so. So, goodbye Cloverleaf. It was an interesting job and I learned a lot. I hope that people working with had a chance to learn from me too, so it was beneficial for everyone. And I like to wish all the best to the Cloverleaf team.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

First community contribution to OpenSolaris

In one of my last posts I promised to tell more about why OpenSolaris Contributor agreement is needed. Well, it is time to do so. OpenSolaris 20050818 (eq Nevada build 20) is finally up on and among other integrated things there is a contribution made by your humble servant. The problem that I've fixed is quite small and affected a tiny percentage of Solaris x86 user base, but what is important is the fact itself. Community is participating in OpenSolaris development. And I am by no means alone. Right now sponsor (Sun engineer) is needed to perform an actual putback on behalf of the community member, but that is going to change in the future, as the SCM platform for OpenSolaris will be set and the process will be streamlined.

Friday, June 24, 2005

OpenSolaris Contributor Agreement # OS0001

Gee, just got a notification that my OpenSolaris Contributor Agreement was received and got number OS0001 ! More info on why this is needed soon...

Monday, June 13, 2005

OpenSolaris L-day

So - June 14, 2005 - and Solaris becomes open source project. I am proud to be a member of the OpenSolaris Pilot project since moment zero and I can tell that I learned a lot about Solaris and how the development process works. And I really enjoyed what I learned.
So, what now ?
The PowerPC community is open for everyone. The source repository is up. Looks like we can get moving !

Boot OpenSolaris

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

OpenSolaris becomes [some] part of my day job

I was working on that for quite some time and it just brought a fruit. My employer, Cloverleaf Communications,officially allocated up to 20% of my day job time to OpenSolaris activity (which translates roughly to one day a week). I have to decide now whether to bring my Pegasos II back to office or to setup a tunnel from the office into my home network. So... back to OpenSolaris/PPC (I actually like Polaris) port !

Friday, February 25, 2005

CeBIT, logo, etc

I am going to CeBIT next week (I know that it will start on Mar 10, but we need to prepare our stuff for exhibition), so I was checking out Frankfurt Airport web site for various information. And what caught my eye is the resemblance between logos of the company I work for and Frankfurt Airport.

Interesting, huh ? I wonder how many other similar logos are out there in the world...

BTW, if you are visiting CeBIT this year and feel like chatting with me you can find me at Cisco booth (Cloverleaf is a co-exhibitor).

Monday, February 21, 2005

Happy birthday, Bill !

Today is Bill Buck's birthday. And he is celebrating it in a fancy way !
Mazl tov, Bill !

Friday, January 28, 2005

OpenSolaris on PowerPC looks for a new name!

One kind (albeit anonymous!) soul suggested recently in the comment that natural name for OpenSolaris on PPC would be Polaris. Indeed, the idea seems to be obvious. My only concern is that the word Polaris is sooo overused, that it would hardly be associated with [Open]Solaris. That's my opinion of course. I'd like to hear what readers think. Any other suggestions ? Please comment.

P.S. Please, please register. Don't be shy !

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

OpenSolaris starts its public life

Well, it finally went live. The OpenSolaris web site is opened to public and there a lot of stories around the web on that. I actually planned to stay late this night (Israel time) and blog too, but plans had changed - I had to fly to the US on extremely short notice. So I am kinda missing all the fun - sitting in the hotel after long transatlantic flight and full day on customer site. The good news, however, is that there are a lot of OpenSolaris Pilot members blogging like crazy today, so I would hardly say something new anyhow. Or would I ? Hard to say... The stuff I am on currently (PowerPC port) is far from having something "demonstratable". But then it is a lot of fun. Someday we'll be able to show snapshots like that one, but running on PowerPC. I know that day will come...

Monday, January 24, 2005

"Solaris on IBM's Power anyone?"

The Register just published this article on upcoming OpenSolaris announcement.

"Someone could take some of this technology and build a great new market that no one has ever thought of before," Weinberg said. "We don't know what directions those things will go, but there is one example already of a pilot where Solaris has been ported to another chip architecture."

Solaris on IBM's Power anyone?

Eventually... :)

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

ODW arrival photo series

Friends insisted that I should publish this Pegasos II arrival photo series. Indeed it was fun and here pictures are. Enjoy !

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Open Desktop Workstation is on its way - IV (last ?)

Open Desktop Workstation finally arrived ! Well, let's see how long it will take until first Solaris boot ;-) Many thanks to all the people involved in arranging shipment.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Open Desktop Workstation is on its way - III

Well, they do use jets after all to move the packages. However, I think I understand what they meant when they estimated Jan 17 for package arrival. The box appeared at Ben Gurion Airport FedEx warehouse at Jan 9, 9:02 AM. And it is still there as I write it (Jan 11, 9:54 PM). And it doesn't look like they going to release it soon. Bummer ...

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Open Desktop Workstation is on its way - II

FedEx reported that the ODW have passed Atlantic and is in Paris, France today. Quite close. How much time will it take to bring it to Israel I wonder ?

Friday, January 07, 2005

My favorite OS on PowerPC rebirth - continued

Mr. napobo3 in his recent comment brought up interesting questions.

"Solaris on PPC cannot be a one-man-project IMHO. What is your estimation on the amount human*hours it will take? Do you think the volunteers will come from Open Solaris or Linux/PPC community? How the IBM and/or Freescale will be involved? "

Porting OpenSolaris to PowerPC is a community project. While community may consist of only one person in theory, that is definitely not the case with OpenSolaris/PPC. [BTW, we need a name. OpenSolaris on PowerPC is too long.] As for the labor estimation - I really hope it would take infinite amount of work. Setting any definite number would mean that work could be done and forgotten, while really useful and alive project would evolve all the time.
Volunteers are coming from many communities - Linux/PPC including. I think it is quite natural. And the experience the Linux/PPC people can bring to the project is invaluable. Pieter Van den Abeele and Sven Luther, for example, are onboard from the very beginning.
As for vendors involvement - Genesi is involved already. Freescale has something to do with it too. bbrv, I believe, can elaborate more on that. As for others - time will tell.

Open Desktop Workstation is on its way

Just checked with FedEx.

Ship date Jan 5, 2005
Estimated delivery Jan 17, 2005 11:59 PM

Jan 17, huh ? What do they ship with, a steamboat ?

Thursday, January 06, 2005

My favorite OS on PowerPC rebirth

Why am I doing it ? Indeed, why ? Isn't there quite a number of UNIX-like operating systems already running on PowerPC ? Well, yeah. There are many. The only thing is I do not really like them. I like Solaris. I am in Solaris world since 1992. I worked with many other UNIX systems during these years - *BSD, Linux, HP/UX, AIX, IRIX. None of them felt like it. Working with Solaris you get used to the style. Solaris style. I know, I know, Linux bigot would say same thing about Linux and HP/UX guy would say similar things about HP/UX. I am fond of Solaris, however. And I was really excited when Solaris 2.5.1 was released on PowerPC in addition to SPARC and x86. That was really great proof of what Solaris is - very clean UNIX implementation which can easily be ported to new architecture. As much I was excited when it was released, as much I was disappointed when I learned that PowerPC port is canceled. That's why when I got on OpenSolaris Pilot program first thought was - that's a wonderful opportunity to bring the best UNIX out there and one of the best CPU architectures together again.
So here am I - working on PPC port. And while at that I'd like to thank Bill Buck and Raquel Velasco for their support for the project.

Sunday, January 02, 2005

GMail invitations are available again

I seems to have 10 more GMail invitation to send. Drop me a comment if you would like to have one.