Quick and Easy Way to Build Solaris 10 / Solaris Express Zones

So, maybe you don’t want to spend any time installing JET (JumpStart Enterprise Toolkit) but you do want to build zones in a jumpstart-ish way, that is - quickly and consistently on say, your laptop for example… oh yeah and you want to do it right now!

Well, there’s probably a boat load of other people who have done something similar to this before, but, whatever. I’ve written a quick script to add and remove zones from a solaris 10 (or in this case, a Solaris Express) machine, with very little thought and virtually no questions asked.

The newZone.ksh script will:

  • Perform basic verification that your input is sane, such as checking the NIC is plumbed, IP is valid-ish, Zone doesn’t exist
  • Default to autoboot the zone
  • Use your existing /etc/sysidcfg, changing only the hostname (easily modifiable for more complex setups)
  • Allow for post-install scripts to be run, but you must add them yourself (or ask and I’ll give you my basic one).

The rmZone.ksh has basically no error checking, and the script will simply:

  • Halt the running zone immediately
  • Uninstall the zone
  • Delete the zone’s config

The scripts should be relatively easy to follow, and modifable as you see fit. Please don’t redistribute a modified version without my permission.

UPDATE 14 July 2008: Zone Creation Scripts updated to:

  • Improve handling of invalid input
  • Resolve bug with sparse zone creation

Additional notes added to this post you must read if you have not installed the zone host from jumpstart (you will need to create a sysidcfg similar to the example)

You can grab the scripts in the tar file at:


newZone.ksh <zoneName> <physicalNIC> <zoneIP> [whole | sparse]
rmZone.ksh <zoneName>

Sample run:

bash-3.2# ./newZone.sh ldapm1 rtls0 whole
INFO: Zone does not exist, OK to create
INFO: Physical NIC exists, OK to use
INFO: IP Address is probably OK
INFO: ZoneType is OK
INFO: Configuring Zone...
INFO: Creating a whole zone in /export/zones/ldapm1
Preparing to install zone <ldapm1>.
Creating list of files to copy from the global zone.
Copying <206279> files to the zone.
Initializing zone product registry.
Determining zone package initialization order.
Preparing to initialize <1358> packages on the zone.
Initialized <1358> packages on zone.
Zone <ldapm1> is initialized.
[NOTICE: Zone rebooting]

SunOS Release 5.11 Version snv_92 64-bit
Copyright 1983-2008 Sun Microsystems, Inc.  All rights reserved.
Use is subject to license terms.
Hostname: ldapm1
Reading ZFS config: done.
ldapm1 console login:

And we’re good to go!

NOTE for Non-Jumpstarted Machines: The scripts assume the host of your zones was jumpstarted, and as such, has an /etc/sysidcfg file. If it does not, you will want to have one somewhere, by default it looks at /etc/sysidcfg.

For simplicity, you could create one that looks something like this (with the correct paramaters, of course)

  name_service=DNS {domain_name=<your domain>
                        name_server=<your name server>
                        search=<your search domain>}
  root_password=<a crypt version of your password>
  network_interface=primary {hostname=<your host name>
                        netmask=<your netmask>
                        default_route=<your default route>}
  nfs4_domain=<your domain name>

replacing all the bits in the < >, and the <hostname> bit with your systems hostname - this is important as the script uses sed to replace this value with your zone’s hostname, if you do not do this, you will get asked all the questions from the installer, and all of a sudden, the automated build isn’t so automated!

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