Difference Between Solaris 10 and Solaris 11

Solaris is an operating system that belongs to the UNIX family of operating systems. It is now owned by Oracle who bought it from its original developers Sun Microsystems in January 2010. Consequently, it is now known as Oracle Solaris. Solaris was the first operating systems to introduce popular features like DTrace, ZFS and Time Slider. It is now developed for both SPARC-based and x86-based machines. Solaris 10 was released in 2005, and after a long wait of more than five years, Solaris 11 was released on November 15, 2010.

Solaris 10

Solaris 10 supports both AMD and Intel x86-64 bit machines. Solaris 10 has Dynamic Tracing (DTrace) and Solaris Containers. SMF (Service Management Facility) is included to replace int.d scripts. It also includes NFSv4 Least privileged security model for improved security. Support for sun4m and UltraSPARC I processor, which was present in Solaris 9 has been removed from Solaris 10. Solaris 10 does not support EISA-based PC’s anymore. Solaris 10 adds Java Desktop System which is based on GNOME. It includes GRUB as the boot loader for x86 systems and iSCSI support. Initial updates of Solaris 10 added ZFS file system, Solaris Trusted Extensions and Logical domains. Later updates added Active Directory support for Samba sever, Solaris Containers for Linux and enhanced rcapd (Resource Capping Daemon). Furthermore, Solaris 10 includes tests for speed such as SpeedTest and PowerNow for Intel and AMD processors, respectively. In terms of power management, Intel Nehalem processors are supported. Oracle Solaris Auto registration is another novel feature added in Solaris 10.

Solaris 11

Solaris 11 is more commonly known as Solaris 11 Express. Apart from having almost all the features of Solaris 10, Solaris 11 Express introduced several new features. One such main feature is the addition of new packaging system called IPS (Image Packaging System) for program installation, updates, and patching. Other such features are Solaris 10 Containers, virtualization tools for network and QoS (Quality of Service), and virtual consoles. Solaris 10 Containers feature can be used to wrap the existing Solaris 10 installation inside a Solaris 11 Express system. Solaris 11 Express further introduced ZFS encryption. Although, Solaris 11 Express has an updated version of GNOME, Xsun and CDE are no longer there.

What are the differences between Solaris 10 and Solaris 11?

Solaris 11 Express and Solaris 10 have many differences partially due to the fact that there was a long gap of more than five years between the two releases. Solaris 11 Express is the first release to include ZFS encrypted datasets. Solaris 11 Express provides a convenient way to install, update and patch programs in the form of IPS, which was not present in Solaris 10. It is much easier to upgrade to Solaris 11 from OpenSolaris too. Unlike in Solaris 10, Solaris 11’s important commands are in /usr/bin. BSD commands, which were present in Solaris 10, have been depreciated in Solaris 11 Express, and their usage is discouraged as well.