[SATLUG] Solaris by Sun Micro

Brad Knowles brad at shub-internet.org
Fri May 16 13:37:02 CDT 2008

Ernest De Leon wrote:

>                                    I just don't buy (for a second) that
> Solaris is 'what Ubuntu wants to become when it grows up.'  It the exact
> opposite.

The key thing is that Indiana != Solaris.

Don't compare Ubuntu and Indiana and think that you've actually learned 
anything about Solaris.  Compare Ubuntu and Solaris before you come to those 
kinds of conclusions.

>            Ubuntu has done more in the last 4 years than the rest of the
> distributions could do in over a decade.

And Solaris has been in development for over twenty years, and has features 
that cannot be found in any other commercial version of Unix, or any other 
freely-available distribution.  Features that are only found on the 
highest-end mainframes and supercomputers.

VMWare, Xen, and other forms of software virtualization cannot begin to 
compare to real, honest-to-goodness, hardware virtualization like LDOMs. 
But of course, Sun also has other virtualization solutions available, too. 
Some isolate the different clients more than others, and you get a wide 
array of options available to you, to see what fits your needs the best. 
And that's just virtualization.

>                                          I think that speaks volumes about
> Ubuntu and puts it square in a position of leadership rather than one of
> apprenticeship.

Ubuntu may have done well with respect to other Linux distributions, but 
there's a whole huge swath of features that no Linux distribution can offer, 
but Solaris can.

And many of these features are the kinds of things that business really 
wants for mission-critical production systems.

Of course, Solaris has it's share of weaknesses, too.  I'm not trying to 
downplay that aspect.  I'm just trying to tell you that you've compared 
against the wrong benchmark if you want to make claims about Solaris versus 

Ubuntu has become one of the better/more fit fishes in a relatively small 
pond.  Now that pond has grown, and certain whales from the outside world 
want to come in and get a piece of it.  And those fishes who've been 
isolated in that pond want to get a piece of the larger ocean.

Getting a Blue Whale when you wanted a Rainbow Trout is not likely to be 
very satisfying.  Getting a Rainbow Trout when you wanted a Blue Whale is 
not likely to be very satisfying, either.

It all depends on what you want and what you need, as to which solution is 
going to work best for you.

If you want a light and inexpensive solution that looks pretty and has all 
the latest cool open-source tools, then Solaris probably isn't going to be a 
good fit for you

If you want a heavy weight platform that will be suitable for 
mission-critical business-critical purposes, and the only thing you care 
about is whether your chosen mission-critical third-party program runs on 
the box and can do so in the face of multiple components failing 
simultaneously, and will keep going regardless of how badly you beat on the 
thing, then Solaris is likely to be a better fit than Linux.

>                                                   I won't get into a Mac
> diatribe, but you know what I mean (especially here in the bay area/silicon
> valley where Macs are more cliche than coffee.)

No, I don't know what you mean.  Not at all.  Cliché?!?

Brad Knowles <brad at shub-internet.org>
LinkedIn Profile: <http://tinyurl.com/y8kpxu>

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