Installing the Solaris OS From the Flash Archive on a Tape

Joseph GanSystem Admin
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This tech tip describes how to install the Solaris Operating System from a tape backup that was created using the Solaris flash archive utility. I have used this procedure on the Solaris 8 and 9 OS, and it shoudl also work well on the Solaris 10 release.  

[step=""] Ed Note: This is for Solaris (Sparc platform), since the Solaris x86 has different behaviour.
[/step]In the following example, I installed the Solaris OS from a previous backup on a tape, which was created using the Solaris flash archive utility. I booted a Sun Fire V440 server from the Solaris DVD. After the system went through the normal steps, I selected DEC VT100 as my terminal for command-line installation, as shown below.

Note: The Solaris installation program is divided into a series of short sections that prompt you to provide information for the installation. At the end of each section, you can review and change your selections before continuing. While navigating the menus, the mouse cannot be used. If your keyboard does not have function keys, or if your function keys do not respond, press ESC. The legend at the bottom of the screen will change to show the keys to use for navigation.
What type of terminal are you using?
                       1) ANSI Standard CRT
                       2) DEC VT52
                       3) DEC VT100
                       4) Heathkit 19
                       5) Lear Siegler ADM31
                       6) PC Console
                       7) Sun Command Tool
                       8) Sun Workstation
                       9) Televideo 910
                       10) Televideo 925
                       11) Wyse Model 50
                       12) X Terminal Emulator (xterms)
                       13) Other
                      Type the number of your choice and press Return: 3
                      syslog service starting.
                      savecore: open("/dev/dump"): No such file or directory
                      Running in command line mode
                      
                      Please wait while the system information is loaded... /
                      
                      Welcome to the Web Start Solaris Command Line installation!
                      
                      The following questions will gather information about this system.
                      This information will be used to configure:
                      
                              Network
                              Kerberos Security
                              Name Service
                              Date and Time
                              Root Password
                              Power Management
                      
                         <Press Return to continue>
                         Is this machine networked (y/n) [n]?
                      

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I selected no network at this stage. You can always change that selection later, if needed. (I didn't put network information because everyone's IP address will be different, but you can manually add it in later when the system is ready to connect to the network.)
Please enter a host name, which identifies this system on
                      the network. The name must be unique within the domain in
                      which it resides; creating a duplicate host name will cause
                      problems on the network after you install Solaris.
                      
                      A host name must be at least two characters; it can contain
                      letters, digits, and minus signs (-).
                      
                         Enter host name []: hostname
                      

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I entered hostname for this example.
Specify whether or not Kerberos Security will be enabled on
                      this machine.
                      
                         Enable Kerberos [n]:
                      
                      
                      Please select how to specify your default time zone.
                      
                      Specify Time Zone by:
                      
                      1. Geographic region
                      2. Offset from GMT
                      3. Time zone file
                      
                         Please enter the number corresponding to how you would like to
                         specify the time zone [1]:
                      
                      Please specify your default time zone by geographic region.
                      
                      Select a region from the first menu and a time zone from the
                      second menu
                      
                      Available Regions:
                      
                      1. Africa
                      2. Asia, Eastern
                      3. Asia, Western
                      4. Australia / New Zealand
                      5. Canada
                      6. Europe
                      7. Mexico
                      8. South America
                      9. United States
                      
                       Please enter the number corresponding to the correct region [1]: 9
                      
                      Available Zones:
                      
                      1. Tasmania
                      2. Queensland
                      3. North
                      4. West
                      5. South
                      6. Victoria
                      7. New South Wales
                      8. Broken Hill
                      9. Yancowinna
                      10. LHI
                      11. New Zealand
                      
                       Please enter the number corresponding to the correct zone [1]: 1
                      
                      Accept the default date and time or enter new values.
                      
                       The default date and time is Tuesday September  9 07:33:12 EST 2009.
                       Do you want to use this date and time (y/n) [y]?
                      
                      Type in an alphanumeric string to be used as the root password for
                      the computer you are setting up.
                      
                         Enter the root password []:
                      
                      Retype the above password for confirmation.
                      
                         Enter the root password again []:
                      
                      You have entered the following values:
                      
                       Host Name:        hostname
                       Enable Kerberos:  No
                       Time Zone:        .....
                      
                       Enter 'y' to apply these values and proceed to the next stage
                       of the installation, or 'n' to return to the beginning and make
                       changes (y/n): y
                      
                      Please wait while the system is configured with your settings...
                      
                      Solaris Web Start will assist you in installing software
                      for Solaris.
                      
                         <Press ENTER to continue> {"!" exits}
                      
                      The EEPROM variable, diag-switch?, is currently set to true. It is recommended that you set this variable to false during the install.
                         <Press ENTER to continue> {"!" exits}
                      

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After you select the Region and Zone, the installation continues:
Installer Options
                      
                      For many installations the following operations can be automatic.
                      Manual operation may be appropriate if you plan to perform
                      post-install system administration.
                      
                       Reboot automatically after software installation [y]? n
                      
                       Eject a CD/DVD automatically after software installation [y]? n
                      
                      You have chosen the following Installer Options:
                      
                      AutoReboot: n
                      AutoEject: n
                      
                       Enter 'y' if this is correct, or 'n' to make changes [y] y
                      

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I chose to not automatically reboot after the installation.
Now we come to the choice for the installation environment.
Please specify the media from which you will install the Solaris
                      Operating Environment.
                      
                      Media:
                      
                      1. CD/DVD
                      2. Network File System
                      3. HTTP (Flash archive only)
                      4. Local Tape (Flash archive only)
                      
                         Media [1]: 4
                      

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I selected Local Tape for my installation, since that was what I wanted.
Please specify the local tape device and the position on the tape
                      where the Flash archive is located.
                      
                      To select a different media, enter B to go Back.
                         Tape Device or B [/dev/rmt/0]
                         Tape Position or B [1]
                      

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By default, the tape device is referred to as /dev/rmt/0, but the tape position has to be changed to 0. It was 1 by default.
You selected the following Flash archives for initial install:
                      
                       Tape  /dev/rmt/0      0
                      
                       Press Return to continue or enter D to deselect all archives:
                      
                      To select additional Flash archives, please specify the media
                      where the archives are located.
                      
                      Media:
                      
                      1. CD/DVD
                      2. Network File System
                      3. HTTP
                      4. Local Tape
                      5. None - Archive Selection Complete
                      
                         Media [5]:
                      

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This step lets you select other media, but that did not apply to me at this stage.
The system is being initialized, please wait... |
                      The following errors were detected in the archive(s) you selected:
                      - Unexpected error found with media or archive selected
                      Please reselect the Flash archives you want to install.
                      
                         <Press ENTER to continue>
                      
                      The system is being initialized, please wait... \
                      
                      Select which disks you want to lay out the file systems on.
                      Available Disks:
                         Disk      Size
                       c1t0d0    69994 MB
                       c1t1d0    69994 MB
                       c1t3d0    69994 MB
                       c1t2d0    69994 MB
                      
                      Enter 'y' to layout file systems on the specified disk.  This will
                      erase all existing data on the disk.  Enter 'n' to leave the disk
                      unmodified.
                      
                         Layout file systems on disk c1t0d0 (bootdisk) (y/n) [y]?
                         Layout file systems on disk c1t1d0 (y/n) [n]?
                         Layout file systems on disk c1t3d0 (y/n) [n]?
                         Layout file systems on disk c1t2d0 (y/n) [n]?
                      

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There were four internal disks on the Sun Fire V440 server, so I chose the first disk to install the OS.
At least one of the disks selected for installing Solaris
                      software has file systems or unnamed slices that you can choose
                      to preserve. Do you want to preserve existing data?
                      
                       Enter y to preserve data or n to skip data preservation. [n]
                      

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You could preserve the data on the disk, but I didn't need to, so I selected No.
The following steps let you re-partition the disk as you like for root, /usr, /var, and so on.
The Solaris Installer is determining size requirements based on your choices, please wait...  /
                      
                      File System operations:
                      
                      1. Print the current partition table
                      2. Modify a disk's partition table
                      3. Return to beginning
                      4. Done
                      
                         Select the number corresponding to a file system operation, 'Return to
                         beginning' to change selections, or 'Done' to proceed with the install [4]: 2
                      
                      Available disks:
                      
                      1.  c1t0d0                            
                      /     69474 MB  13983 Cyls
                      swap  517 MB    105 Cyls  
                      
                      2.  c1t1d0  Not Selected
                      
                      3.  c1t2d0  Not Selected
                      
                      4.  c1t3d0  Not Selected
                      
                      5. Done
                      
                         Select a disk to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [5]: 1
                      
                       1) MB
                       2) Cyls
                      
                         Configure using Megabytes or Cylinders  [1]:
                      
                       Disk Name      c1t0d0
                       TotalSpace     69995
                       Used Space     69991
                       Free Space     -1
                       Round Error    5
                      
                       #   Slice Name  Size      Minimum Size
                       0.  /           69474 MB  0 MB
                       1.  swap        517 MB    512 MB
                       3.  Unused
                       4.  Unused
                       5.  Unused
                       6.  Unused
                       7.  Unused
                      
                       8.  Done
                      
                         Select a slice to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [8]: 0
                         Enter new slice name: /
                         Enter new slice size (in MB) [10]: 500
                      
                       Disk Name      c1t0d0
                       TotalSpace     69995
                       Used Space     1017
                       Free Space     68978
                       Round Error    0
                      
                       #   Slice Name  Size    Minimum Size
                       0.  /           500 MB  0 MB
                       1.  swap        517 MB  10 MB
                       3.  Unused
                       4.  Unused
                       5.  Unused
                       6.  Unused
                       7.  Unused
                      
                       8.  Done
                      
                         Select a slice to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [8]: 1
                         Enter new slice name: usr
                         Enter new slice size (in MB) [10]: 1500
                      
                       Disk Name      c1t0d0
                       TotalSpace     69995
                       Used Space     2000
                       Free Space     67995
                       Round Error    0
                      
                       #   Slice Name  Size     Minimum Size
                       0.  /           500 MB   0 MB
                       1.  /usr        1500 MB  0 MB
                       3.  Unused
                       4.  Unused
                       5.  Unused
                       6.  Unused
                       7.  Unused
                      
                       8.  Done
                      
                         Select a slice to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [8]: 3
                         Enter new slice name: var
                         Enter new slice size (in MB) [10]: 9000
                      
                       Disk Name      c1t0d0
                       TotalSpace     69995
                       Used Space     11000
                       Free Space     58995
                       Round Error    0
                      
                       #   Slice Name  Size     Minimum Size
                       0.  /           500 MB   0 MB
                       1.  /usr        1500 MB  0 MB
                       3.  /var        9000 MB  0 MB
                       4.  Unused
                       5.  Unused
                       6.  Unused
                       7.  Unused
                      
                       8.  Done
                      
                         Select a slice to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [8]: 4
                         Enter new slice name: swap
                         Enter new slice size (in MB) [10]: 16000
                      
                       Disk Name      c1t0d0
                       TotalSpace     69995
                       Used Space     27000
                       Free Space     42995
                       Round Error    0
                      
                       #   Slice Name  Size      Minimum Size
                       0.  /           500 MB    0 MB
                       1.  /usr        1500 MB   0 MB
                       3.  /var        9000 MB   0 MB
                       4.  swap        16000 MB  10 MB
                       5.  Unused
                       6.  Unused
                       7.  Unused
                      
                       8.  Done
                      
                         Select a slice to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [8]: 6
                         Enter new slice name: opt
                         Enter new slice size (in MB) [10]: 1000
                      
                       Disk Name      c1t0d0
                       TotalSpace     69995
                       Used Space     28000
                       Free Space     41995
                       Round Error    0
                      
                       #   Slice Name  Size      Minimum Size
                       0.  /           500 MB    0 MB
                       1.  /usr        1500 MB   0 MB
                       3.  /var        9000 MB   0 MB
                       4.  swap        16000 MB  10 MB
                       5.  Unused
                       6.  /opt        1000 MB   0 MB
                       7.  Unused
                      
                       8.  Done
                      
                         Select a slice to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [8]:
                      
                      Available disks:
                      
                      1.  c1t0d0                            
                      /     500 MB    101 Cyls  
                      /usr  1500 MB   302 Cyls  
                      /var  9000 MB   1812 Cyls
                      swap  16000 MB  3221 Cyls
                      /opt  1000 MB   202 Cyls  
                      
                      2.  c1t1d0  Not Selected
                      
                      3.  c1t2d0  Not Selected
                      
                      4.  c1t3d0  Not Selected
                      
                      5. Done
                      
                         Select a disk to modify, or Done to return to the previous menu [5]:
                      
                      File System operations:
                      
                      1. Print the current partition table
                      2. Modify a disk's partition table
                      3. Return to beginning
                      4. Done
                      
                         Select the number corresponding to a file system operation, 'Return to
                         beginning' to change selections, or 'Done' to proceed with the install [4]: 
                      

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The previous steps let you re-partition the disk as you like for root, /usr, /var, and so on, as described.
The following items will be installed:
                      
                       Tape  /dev/rmt/0      0
                      
                       Enter 'y' to accept these values and start the installation,
                       or 'n' to return to disk selection to make changes (y/n): y
                      
                      Installing...
                      
                      Extracting archive(s)
                      |-1%--------25%------------50%-----------75%-----------100%|
                      
                       Pausing for 90 seconds at the "Summary" screen. The wizard will
                       continue to the next step unless you select "Pause". Enter 'p'
                       to pause. Enter 'c' to continue. [c] p
                      
                      
                      Installation details:
                      
                           Product                   Result     More Info
                       1.  Solaris Flash archive(s)  Installed  Available
                      
                       2.  Done
                      
                       Enter the number corresponding to the desired selection for more
                       information, or enter 2 to continue [2]:
                      
                         <Press Return to reboot the system>
                      

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At this point, you have completed the installation from the flash archive.
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Joseph GanSystem Admin
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