Solaris Virtualization


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# 1  
Solaris Virtualization

Hello All,

To start with, I am not an expert of solaris and VMs. Unfortunately, I can't find a direct or understandable (at least to me) answer to my question online. So please, excuse me if my question will sound dumb to you. Smilie

We have 2 remaining solaris 8 servers are on sparc architecture. They cannot be discarded because of some tools that can only run in solaris. Can these solaris 8 servers be virtualized? If not, why?

Really hope to hear from any of you on this.

Thank you very much in advance!

Last edited by forextrafun; 08-28-2019 at 03:50 AM..
# 2  
I assume by 'virtualize" you mean you want to run Solaris 8 ( now running on SPARC64) in an x86 architecture.

Have you looked at QEMU?


Quote:
QEMU is a generic and open source machine emulator and virtualizer.
You can read the details about the QEMU Sparc32 emulator here:

Code:
https://qemu.weilnetz.de/doc/qemu-doc.html#Sparc32-System-emulator

You can read the details about the QEMU Sparc64 emulator here:

Code:
https://qemu.weilnetz.de/doc/qemu-doc.html#Sparc64-System-emulator

Wikipedia:

Quote:
QEMU (short for Quick Emulator) is a free and open-source emulator that performs hardware virtualization.

QEMU is a hosted virtual machine monitor: it emulates the machine's processor through dynamic binary translation and provides a set of different hardware and device models for the machine, enabling it to run a variety of guest operating systems. It also can be used with KVM to run virtual machines at near-native speed (by taking advantage of hardware extensions such as Intel VT-x). QEMU can also do emulation for user-level processes, allowing applications compiled for one architecture to run on another.
QEMU Wiki:

Quote:
QEMU is a generic and open source machine emulator and virtualizer.

When used as a machine emulator, QEMU can run OSes and programs made for one machine (e.g. an ARM board) on a different machine (e.g. your own PC). By using dynamic translation, it achieves very good performance.

When used as a virtualizer, QEMU achieves near native performance by executing the guest code directly on the host CPU. QEMU supports virtualization when executing under the Xen hypervisor or using the KVM kernel module in Linux. When using KVM, QEMU can virtualize x86, server and embedded PowerPC, 64-bit POWER, S390, 32-bit and 64-bit ARM, and MIPS guests.
This User Gave Thanks to Neo For This Post:
# 3  
Do you have any other Sparc platforms??? You can virtualize Solaris 8 on a Solaris 10 platform. The requirement to move a Solaris 8 system off creaking hardware that might fail is quite common and this is well catered for. However, you need to know the Sun/Oracle terminology for all this stuff in order to find the necessary information on the web. I can detail all this in a following post if you have other more modern Sparc hardware that you want to move to. If you don't, then I'd be wasting me time in doing that.

Yes, QEMU as suggested by Neo is an option but, in my experience, using emulation (to translate the Sparc instruction set into x86 instructions) is very slow and a bit of a nightmare to configure. In many situations it's not practical.

So question is, what more modern Sparc hardware do you have?
This User Gave Thanks to hicksd8 For This Post:
# 4  
--- Post updated at 03:36 AM ---

Quote:
Originally Posted by hicksd8
Do you have any other Sparc platforms??? You can virtualize Solaris 8 on a Solaris 10 platform. The requirement to move a Solaris 8 system off creaking hardware that might fail is quite common and this is well catered for. However, you need to know the Sun/Oracle terminology for all this stuff in order to find the necessary information on the web. I can detail all this in a following post if you have other more modern Sparc hardware that you want to move to. If you don't, then I'd be wasting me time in doing that.

Yes, QEMU as suggested by Neo is an option but, in my experience, using emulation (to translate the Sparc instruction set into x86 instructions) is very slow and a bit of a nightmare to configure. In many situations it's not practical.

So question is, what more modern Sparc hardware do you have?
Unfortunately, we don't have Solaris 10 platform. Smilie Currently, our server is working fine but because this is an old server, I am already looking into the possibility of this server breaking up soon. I have to talk to the engineers on alternatives for their tools so they can also start looking. Also, as Neo suggested, we will take a look also on this emulator.

Again, thank you for the suggestion and help. Smilie

Last edited by forextrafun; 08-29-2019 at 04:36 AM..
# 5  
If you get a high end x86 machine (which are not expensive) running a modern era emulator, they will more-than-likely out perform a very old Sparc machine.

In addition, it depends on the application and what the application is designed to do. I would not worry too much about performance before you actually build and test. You might find your application on a modern X86 machine running an emulator out performs your old Sparc machine Smilie

You can easily build one and test it yourself before you deploy it.
This User Gave Thanks to Neo For This Post:
# 6  
Or, if you have to acquire hardware anyway, you could get a cheap Sparc box capable of running Solaris 10 (Solaris 8 virtualization is not support under Solaris 11) and virtualize both your Solaris 8 systems on the same box.
# 7  
Quote:
Originally Posted by hicksd8
Or, if you have to acquire hardware anyway, you could get a cheap Sparc box capable of running Solaris 10 (Solaris 8 virtualization is not support under Solaris 11) and virtualize both your Solaris 8 systems on the same box.
That's a creative thought, but I don't think that accomplishes what forextrafun wants to do.

He already has two Sparc boxes (EOS 2012) he wants to get rid of as part of his consolidation efforts, because he says, "2 remaining solaris 8 servers are on sparc architecture".

Replacing two obsolete Sparc boxes (EOS 2012) with two Sparc boxes may not help him if his goal (in the first post) to get rid of his "last two remaining Sparc boxes.".

I think he wants to get completely off Sparc architecture completely and consolidate on X86 (assumed in my first reply), based on this first post and follow up replies. That is why he wants to "virtualize", I think; but since he did not state that clearly, it's hard to tell his ultimate motivation.

However, if they continue to run and support other Sparc servers, then virtualizing Solaris 8 on Solaris 10 might be a great idea, for sure, since Solaris 10 is EOS 2024.
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