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Has anyone used Solaris operating system on PCs?





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Comment by Joseph Foutz on March 15, 2011 at 5:40pm

We played with it a few years ago, before Sun was bought by Oracle. 

I’ll assume you’re talking about general purpose hardware, not hardware designed to use a specific *nix variant (SPARC, AS/400, HP9000, etc.).  And I’ll assume you’re talking about general purpose use and not an OS decision that makes itself – linux for IP appliances, OpenBSD for security hardware, etc.

Solaris is a good general purpose OS, and should certainly be strongly considered for Oracle installations.  That said, it doesn’t have a whole lot of pros and also doesn’t have a whole lot of cons.  (As a con, I will say that antivirus for it is expensive.  Also, if you’re considering it for an HPC cluster, there are more HPC development tools available for linux.)  Of the popular general-purpose mainstream-hardware *nix variants (Solaris, FreeBSD, Red Hat, SUSE), all have pros and cons, but Solaris is certainly a very good choice.  If I was doing a *nix installation, I’d choose unix of linux, and Solaris over FreeBSD.  (For a lot of reasons, I choose Windows over any *nix though.)  A big consideration in choosing a *nix flavor is, of course, application availability, an area where Solaris does pretty well.

I guess the real issue is why are you considering Solaris?  Administration is different with every *nix flavor, and there tends to be a fair amount of learning involved to administer any particular flavor effectively.  (Let me make a bright-line distinction between using an OS and administering one.)  If the only reason you’re considering Solaris is to save on licensing costs, it really needs to suit your needs well and you need to be looking at installing/migrating a fairly decent number of machines in order to make the transition worthwhile.

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