Monday, June 18, 2012

Solaris 8 cluster patches - which one to use?

Our database vendor (informix) wants me to install the recommended patch cluster - - prior to upgrading to informix 10. 

Apparently my sun contract does not allow me to download that file from Sunsolve. I was able to download Sun ClusterPatch 117350-62, which is not the quarterly recommended patch cluster for Solaris 8, but is actually a newer patch cluster. The recommended file is dated 3/09, while 117350-62 is dated 4/09. Can I assume the one I downloaded is a suitable replacement for the recommended quarterly cluster patch?
For me yes, but read carefully why they recommend this patch cluster and 
compare with changelog of new cluster

Sorry, you could install it as 117350-62 is the latest Solaris 8 Kernel patch but anything with a number like that is an individual patch. The patch cluster for Solaris 8 SPARC consists of 215 different patches and is approx 250MB in size. 

Some patches are free but these are mainly security, new hardware support and patches that relate to the patching utilities. Unfortunately as you have discovered this does not cover the recommended cluster.
The OS Kernel Patch is a small part of the Recommended bundle. It is also 
not the Security Bundle (another subset of Recommended). 

To download OS Patch clusters, you must have OS Maintenance as part of your 
Hardware maintenance contract - most companies do this, for obvious 
reasons. Solaris 8 is in End-of-Life support, it is recommended that you 
also upgrade - at least to Solaris 9. Sun has always guaranteed to be 100% 
able to run everything for Solaris 8 on Solaris 9. 

Solaris 10 has had major parts re-written to handle new startup/shutdown 
process, support for virtualization, better hardware diagnostics and 
predictive self-healing, among others. While it is enticing to go there, 
and also recommended, most, but not all software will run the same in that 
environment. Informix will run well in all Solaris OS's, so that won't 
present an issue for you in any upgrade. 

In any case, it is recommended that you look into getting OS support for 
your servers to go with yur hardware support, if possible.


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