SUMMARY: Clonning Solaris Disks

From: Powers, William <>
Date: Thu Jan 03 2002 - 11:14:24 EST
In summary, I'd like to first thank all of those who responded to my inquiry
even though I may have misled some in my question.  Second, I'd like to
apologize for the delay in sending this summary.  Things were a bit busy
before the holidays and before I went on vacation.

My inquiry dealt with having a way to get a snapshot of a disk on a Solaris
7 system through cloning so that it could be recovered back to that state
should the disk become corrupted at a later time.  I was hoping that there
was a cloning tool in unix similar to Drive Image or Ghost, used in Windows,
that I could obtain.

I will be checking out Stuart Morris' suggestion (see below), but if it
doesn't pan out I will probably use ufsdump to dump the  disk's partitions
to tape for the snapshot and then if necessary, use ufsrestore to bring back
the affected partitions, and installboot, in addition,  if the root
partition needs to be restored.  Hopefully, the Ghost software will still

Here are some of the responses I received.  A thanks to each person for
their response.

Stuart Morris suggested:
I used to do it a long time ago with NT and SCO servers using a network boot
disk and an early version of Ghost.

The early Ghost version took binary snapshots/images of the disks and didn't
care what OS it was.
>> I haven't tested this yet but will try it with the new version of
>> Ghost.

Jeb Dobson stated:
See Jumpstart and webstart flash. This is the method of installation under

Jeff Kennedy suggested:
flash archive.  comes with solaris 8 04/01.

Andrew_Rotrame's reply was:
If this is for loading, will jumpstart work?

What I do is take a small drive, newfs a partition, do a ufsdump and then
install a bootblock. If my main boot disk fails, I remove it, put in the
and boot the system. There are some minor things such as editing vfstab. Let
know if you want a copy of the clone script my boss wrote.

Bertrand_Hutin stated:
Most CD burning software allow to put an image on a CD.
   copy the partition image to a file with dd (<650Mb)
   copy the file to CD burner machine,
   use the sofftware to put the image on the CD.

Steve Sandau suggested:
It may actually be worth trying dd. I have dd'd an AIX partition to a
file on a Linux box, and dd'd it back to a different drive entirely, and
had it boot up just fine. I don't kno wif this'll work with a Solaris
partition, though.

todd.a.fiedler's reply was:
Mostly people use jumpstart for system builds if they have more than a 
half dozen servers. This allows centralized server builds and guarantees 
conformity, plus it can be pretty quick.

However, if this is not an option for you, I would suggest using 
mkisofs. This is a program that allows you to make a file system into an 
ISO image which can be written to a CD. I personally would try to make 
use of the loopback file system support that is available with Solaris. 
This let's you use dd to make a disk image of the file system, and then 
you could in the future mount the file as a device and use it like any 
other file system.

Dan Barnes offered:
Absolutely ...if you are talking about Solaris 8
release 04/01. I just found out about this stuff
recently but there is a program called flarcreate that
will take a snapshot of your system and makes it into
one archived file. You can also exclude filesystems
you don't want to flash.
Later on you can use this archive on a
jumpstart/install server with the install type

>> With the jumpstart and solaris 8 replies, I may have a little to brief in
my inquiry.
>> Sorry folks, I do appreciate your taking the time to reply.

				thanks to all

Bill Powers
Direct Support Engineer
GD Electronics Systems
100 Ferguson Drive
Mountain View, CA 94043
sunmanagers mailing list
Received on Sat Jan 5 17:20:23 2002

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