Big Bubbles (no troubles)

What sucks, who sucks and you suck

Improving Sun Flash

Sun’s Flash archiving in Solaris is a great way to clone systems or take OS backups. It ties nicely into JumpStart too. However, the basic flarcreate(1M) command (prior to Solaris 9 Update 2) is somewhat limited; notably, it won’t let you exclude multiple files/dirs from the archive because the script only processes one -x argument (bugid 4501772). There are ways around this.

  • Use find(1) to create an exclusive list of the files you want in the archive.
  • flarcreate uses /etc/mnttab(4) as the default list of filesystems to include. Copy and edit the flarcreate script and change the mnttab reference to mnttab.flar. Then copy /etc/mnttab to /etc/mnttab.flar and edit the latter, removing any filesystems you don’t want. (This only works for complete filesystems, not individual files or directories.) (See Info Doc #46325.)
  • Recommended: Install patch 109318-34 for Solaris 8, or equivalent (misleadingly labelled as a suninstall patch). This provides a new version of flarcreate that understands multiple excludes and even includes (via the new -y option; reading the code, this appears to add files in addition to the current or default list). Note that the extended options aren’t yet documented in the man page. This patch can also be applied to a JumpStart base image using the -R option to patchadd(1M).