After struggling around with OpenSolaris 2008.11, i have decided to install some new shiny sort of ubuntu. So i downloaded the 64 bit version of linux mint version 5 (which is based on ubuntu hardy) and upgraded it to intrepid (and the corresponding felicia). I needed the 64 bit version not only due to the 6GB RAM in my computer, but also due to some performance gains, which i recognized especially in the calculation of large matrices.
Recently, after listening to a talk by Detlef Drewanz, i spent two whole days installing OpenSolaris 2008.11 from www.opensolaris.org. I was astonished that my NVidia card worked out of the box with all the fancy 3D stuff. But then i tried to get more involved into costumizing my installation. And there the trouble began:
The first installation on my work pc was fine but the user i created was not in the root group/profile. So i had to reboot into single user mode and change the /etc/user_attr file. Just add “;roles=root” to the user in order to achieve a “su -” and gain root rights. (I don’t know if this is a good idea from the security point of view?) Updates and other installations worked smoothly on that pc.
But why is the (default) user “jack” still existing after the installation? This, in my opinion, could lead to severe security problems?
But i also wanted to try out OpenSolaris at home. So i installed it on my home pc and found out, that my US-Robotics WLAN (zyd driver) adapter was NOT working. Drivers are avaible but needed to be compiled, which was not possible because of missing internet connection. (What was first the egg or the chicken?) So i thought i could connect a old router, with dd-wrt configured as client bridge, to the ethernet port. Full success under Linux. But full failure under OpenSolaris 2008.11, because the Attansic network device was also NOT working. Drivers are avaible here but i was unable (due to missing documention!) to install the binary modules. I also could not compile the source, due to missing development environment, which is due to the missing internet connection.
So, i’m giving up on OpenSolaris until the frustrated userbase is big enough, that Sun (and others) will create a usable OpenSolaris edition, which includes at least all possible network drivers and a good documentation project. A dvd edition of OpenSolaris with a whole development environment would also be great.