Solaris: Patch  Obsolete ?

Posted on 2005-04-13
Last Modified: 2013-12-21
How can I upgrade my patches ? I tried to find new release at  SunSolve

Is it 109667 for the Patch Code to find the new release ?
Can I do OS backup using floopy drive?

Can you give me a procedural steps and commands in backup/upgrading the patches.

root@svr-4 #showrev -p
Patch: 109667-04 Obsoletes:  Requires:  Incompatibles:  Packages:
Patch: 109667-05 Obsoletes:  Requires:  Incompatibles:  Packages:
Patch: 109926-02 Obsoletes:  Requires:  Incompatibles:  Packages:
Patch: 112794-01 Obsoletes:  Requires:  Incompatibles:  Packages:
Patch: 108806-15 Obsoletes:  Requires:  Incompatibles:  Packages:
Patch: 108806-17 Obsoletes:  Requires:  Incompatibles:  Packages:
Patch: 111847-01 Obsoletes:  Requires:  Incompatibles:  Packages:

root@svr-4 # uname -a
SunOS svr-4 5.8 Generic_108528-27 sun4u sparc SUNW,Sun-Fire-V240
root@svr-4 #

Guys, hope u can help me.

Question by:rodh_z
    LVL 34

    Expert Comment

    "Is it 109667 for the Patch Code to find the new release ?"

    Yes, the Patch Number is the 6 digits before the -. The revision of that Patch is the two digits after the -. You can go to and put six digits in the Patch Finder (top right panel), and it will find the most-current iteration of the patch. In this case, its 109667-07, released 9-Sep-2004. Seems to address bugs related to xntpd/ntpd.

    "Can I do OS backup using floopy drive? "

    Sure, but you'd better have a lot of floppies. A LOT of floppies. More floppies than you probably have. Even a minimal backup of a base Solaris 8 End-User install is going to consume floppies by the score, not to mention taking forever, and being almost impossible to restore if you needed it. Do you cut your grass with a pair of scissors, or a lawn mower? Get a tape drive.

    "Can you give me a procedural steps and commands in backup/upgrading the patches."

    All Patches include instructions on how to install them, as part of the Patch packaqe you download from Sun. The specific command used in the Solaris 8 environment is --> patchadd

    See --> man patchadd
    See --> man patchrm
    LVL 10

    Expert Comment

    The "Obsoletes:" means the patch obseleted has had it code fixes/updates pulled into another patch.  Sun does this from time to time for numous reasons including:
      - managing the number of patches
      - doesn't make sense to keep seperate patches out when a new fix and an existing fix are directly related
      - old fix is no longer needed by a new fix
      - etc

    In your listed example, none of the patches shown have obsoleted anything or been specfically called out as being obsolete.

    All patches eventually become obsolete.  Like 109667-04 - that's an obsolete patch because rev -05 was installed.  -05 has *ALL* fixes and updates there were part of -04 including whatever -05 has added.  But you can't back  out rev -04 because -05 is installed - see below.

    You don't specifically backup a patch.  When you install a patch, by default it backs up all files that will be modified into special directories in /var/sadm/<PKGname>/.....  This allows you to back a patch out if there is a problem.   If you do patch a system, your next step should be to perform a system backup - either incremental or full depending on your defined backup procedures.

    But there are some rules about backing patches out:

    - You can't back out a patch that is required by another patch
    - You can't back out a patch that has a higher rev of the same patch number - think about it say using the 109667 patch as the example.  Rev -04 modifies say file /usr/bin/whatever.  Rev -05 also modifies file /usr/bin/whatever.  Its the same file so how can you backout rev -04 ?  Now you could clean up the save folders of older patch revs using a reasonable systems.  Say something like clean up save folders for patch rev obsolete patches after patch is two revisions ahead.  So you could clean the save directory for 109667-04 when 109667 hits say rev -07.  Maybe include obsoletes in the cycle as well e.g. 109667-04 gets to rev -06 and then is obsoleted by patch 111222-01.  This still fits the two revs ahead model.

    Just delete save directory stuff using a reasonable cycle - NOT pkg data info showing that patch was installed.  This info uses a minimum around of disk space.

    Sun doesn't have a stated best practice that I'm aware of on how to manage old patches on systems.
    LVL 10

    Expert Comment


    >  How can I upgrade my patches ? I tried to find new release at  SunSolve

    Sun is regularly (about twice a month I think) releasing a so-called patch-cluster that you should be able to savely apply to your system  It can be downloaded (from as one big archive and then all you need to do is to run install_cluster outof the downloaded archive.

    Like this you are allways on a quite good way concerning your patches.

    > Can I do OS backup using floopy drive?

    Uhh, I would not do that... even though technically it's possible. Backup up the entire OS would take hundreds of Floppy disks. However to do it you would need the following:

    /etc/init.d/volmgt stop

    ufsdump 0f /dev/diskette0 /export/home
    ufsdump 0f /dev/diskette0 /usr
    ufsdump 0f /dev/diskette0 /

    (and so on, for each partition you have)
    LVL 10

    Expert Comment

    Come on folks ...

    rodh_z, you can't effectively use diskettes on a Sun systems for system level backups.   In the last several years, I can't think of *ONE* support issues that required me to use a diskette for *anything* on a Sun server.

    PsiCop gave you the right advice - get a tape drive.

    LVL 10

    Expert Comment

    The Network is the computer... so why caring about floppys ?

    But you are right... thats what I mean with "Uhh, I would not do that..."

    Author Comment

    Sori Guy coz my Sun System had no tape drive, that's why i ask dat dump question.

    Is there a case that after patch updagrade it cause a System Panic or OS crash, coz I encounter that in HP-UX machine.
    LVL 10

    Expert Comment

    Yes, the possibility exists for a panic or crash after a patch upgrade.  Patching a system isn't risk free but the chances are remote.  Sun or any other vendor doesn't lightly release patches without pretty extensive testing.  This isn't to say that problems don't come up.  In my 18 years, I've only seen a couple of cases where patch upgrades caused system outages.
    LVL 10

    Expert Comment

    as for the backup, youre probably better of to do it over the network onto some harddrive.

    Author Comment

    how about file system and OS backup, can i also do into network.
    Honestly Im not well-verse in SunOS. Unlike in HPUX there's ignite backup for OS.
    currently i have:
    root@svr-4 # df -k
    Filesystem            kbytes    used   avail capacity  Mounted on
    /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s0    20766414 12092082 8466668    59%    /
    /proc                      0       0       0     0%    /proc
    fd                         0       0       0     0%    /dev/fd
    mnttab                     0       0       0     0%    /etc/mnttab
    swap                 2701992      16 2701976     1%    /var/run
    swap                  524288  394616  129672    76%    /tmp
    /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s3    10111259 6428196 3581951    65%    /apps
    /dev/dsk/c1t1d0s0    5161437 2623759 2486064    52%    /apps1
    /dev/dsk/c1t1d0s1    10323610 7830950 2389424    77%    /apps2
    /dev/dsk/c1t1d0s3    19521193 12866440 6459542    67%    /apps3
    root@svr-4 #
    root@svr-4 #
    LVL 10

    Accepted Solution

    you can backup to a tape attached to some other machine who supports ufsdump remote like this:

    ufsdump 0uf othermachine:/dev/rmt/0n /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s0
    ufsdump 0uf othermachine:/dev/rmt/0n /dev/dsk/c1t0d0s3
    ufsdump 0uf othermachine:/dev/rmt/0n /dev/dsk/c1t1d0s1
    ufsdump 0uf othermachine:/dev/rmt/0 /dev/dsk/c1t1d0s3

    on this other machine you need to have this machine in your /.rhosts file (that is, you need to root-trust this machine)

    LVL 5

    Expert Comment

    Hi all,

    I recently got a V240 for my home office.  It does not have a floppy drive.  You can however put a slimline CD burner in it.  That would certainly be a better option.

    Regards, Nisus

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