Installing Solaris on an x86 machine and other performance issues

Posted on 2003-10-21
Last Modified: 2013-12-27
Hello There,

I'm very new to Solaris and please pardon me if my question sound stupid.

Can we install SUN Solaris (8 or 9)  on an Intel x86 based machine. I know that x86 version of Solari is available, but my question is is there any particulay hardware compatibility is required for the installation.

I am planning to run a process which was running on a SUN Fire 286R server with 1.4 GHz Dual Processor, 8 MB Cache per CPU, 2 GB RAM,   and 72 GB of HDD. Since the SUN hardware is expensing I am planning to run the same process on an Intel based machine with Solaris installed in it. Whut I am bothered about is the performace factor. Will the 8 MB Cache per processor in the Fire Blade make big difference if I'm using x86 based machine where the cache is only 512 K ???

Suppose, the process I'm running in the SUN Fire Blade 28R Server will take approx 2 hours to process 2 MB of Data (Text File), what will be the performace if I install solaris on a x86 based machine with following configuration following configuration:

2 x Intel Xeon 2.4 GHZ processor

Hope to hear from some of you experts soon.

Thanks in advance

Question by:Najja
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • +3
LVL 18

Accepted Solution

liddler earned 43 total points
ID: 9591277
Solaris x86 Hardware Compatability list

Don't know about x86 performance, but I assume that as Solaris is sparc native, an x86 version will be significantly slower.
LVL 38

Assisted Solution

yuzh earned 41 total points
ID: 9595836
First check you hardware to make sure they can support by Solaris

Make sure you have a Intel CPU, and the mainboard have Intel chip set(or what ever chip set on the list), and you graphic card,  Ethernet card are on the list as well.

Solaris X 86 is 32 bit OS, you can not expect your get the same performance as it runs on
a SUN Fire Blade 28R Server  or SUN Fire 286R server, and the application binary have to be
for Solaris x86, unless you rebuild it from the source code.

Expert Comment

ID: 9597585
I suspect that the large difference in cache will make a big difference in performance, but it does depend on the application.
Technology Partners: We Want Your Opinion!

We value your feedback.

Take our survey and automatically be enter to win anyone of the following:
Yeti Cooler, Amazon eGift Card, and Movie eGift Card!


Author Comment

ID: 9600752
I wonder whether there is any cheaper SPARC based Servers available other that SUN.

Assisted Solution

riaanvd earned 41 total points
ID: 9601964
You can have a look at the Fujitsu Siemens range of servers. They are sparc based and run Solaris as the operating system and they are much cheaper. Don't be fooled by the MHz values on the cpu's for the technology is different so the lower valued FS cpu's are performing faster than the higher valued sparc cpu's. Check it out on
Your specs on the intel system is fine and solaris will run nicely on it. The intel based system will run slower as the sparc based system but don't be fooled by the performance of solaris on the intel systems. My suggestion is to test your application on an intel system running solaris and have a look for yourself to see whether the performance/price is satisfactory. The solaris hardware compatibility list is fairly accurate but doesn't work with all the nic's it specifies. Use a card with the RTL 8139(A/B/C/D) chipset and download the driver for solaris from for a guaranteed supported nic.

Author Comment

ID: 9604723
Thanx riaanvd,

I went through their range of products, but the site says nothing about the pricing. Also I'm scared about the level of support I can expect as I'm in India and the servers are available only in Europe. There's no local vendors. Being an EOU company, importing the servers is not an issue, but the service will be an issue

LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 9605061
Fujitsu is good hardware, but support could be an issue if there is not local vendors.  Have you looked at resellers who sell refrurbished SUN kit?  or even take a look at
LVL 38

Expert Comment

ID: 9605186
Is a SunBlade 1500 workstation (you can have up to 4GB RMA for it) cheap enough in
India? I think it is value for money.

LVL 38

Expert Comment

ID: 9605193
or look at a low end SunBlade 150.
LVL 16

Expert Comment

by:Hanno P.S.
ID: 9626596
Ever considered the low-end servers V210, V100, V120 or V60x / V65x ?
You can get original Sun servers for "Dell price" with these.

Expert Comment

ID: 9629623
If you have any intel machines laying around I would suggest doing a bit of testing on them. A big part of the speed on sun is OS related and not just cpu related. You can also have a look at the V210 & the V240 which are also dual cpu systems, but much cheaper than the 280R's.

Featured Post

On Demand Webinar - Networking for the Cloud Era

This webinar discusses:
-Common barriers companies experience when moving to the cloud
-How SD-WAN changes the way we look at networks
-Best practices customers should employ moving forward with cloud migration
-What happens behind the scenes of SteelConnect’s one-click button

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

I promised to write further about my project, and here I am.  First, I needed to setup the Primary Server.  You can read how in this article: Setup FreeBSD Server with full HDD encryption (…
Using libpcap/Jpcap to capture and send packets on Solaris version (10/11) Library used: 1.      Libpcap ( Version 1.2 2.      Jpcap( Version 0.6 Prerequisite: 1.      GCC …
Learn how to find files with the shell using the find and locate commands. Use locate to find a needle in a haystack.: With locate, check if the file still exists.: Use find to get the actual location of the file.:
In a previous video, we went over how to export a DynamoDB table into Amazon S3.  In this video, we show how to load the export from S3 into a DynamoDB table.

705 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question