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-   -   Why Sun distributes installers and patches for the same sfw packages? (

crisostomo_enrico 07-19-2007 03:43 AM

Why does Sun distribute installers and patches for the same sfw packages?

Installing software on my solaris 10 box, I noticed that Sun distributes installers for Solaris (e.g. for Java SE, Java System Application Server) and OS patches and/or packages, being the latest, IMHO, harder to find (often there's no hint about their existence but the patch report).

Said that I prefer a patch/package when possible because it is (seems) easier to trace such an installation, I was wondering why do they maintain both mechanisms. Is it a compatibility issue with previous versions of the OS which prevents them distributing the same patch/package for all systems' versions? Is it to allow an ordinary user to perform a private installation? Other reasons I don't see? How do _you_ usually upgrade software in your system which is part of the OS distribution (such as JavaSE)?


jlliagre 07-19-2007 07:03 AM

This isn't really packages vs installers. Many installers do install packages under the cover.

Packages and patches are the only way to install and fix software in a supported manner.

Tarballs/zips are a simpler way to install software, but you can't patch them. You need to reinstall to upgrade. One advantage though is that it is easier to have multiple versions at the same time, and also you can install in your home directory without administrative rights requirement.

crisostomo_enrico 07-19-2007 07:36 AM


This isn't really packages vs installers. Many installers do install packages under the cover.
I should have imagined, but installing Java EE SDK (and Sun Java System Application Server 9) lead me to think differently: it directly installed in /opt without installing Solaris packages. And I found that pretty strange: Solaris 10 ships with an older version of the same server and I expected at least the possibility of patching the system (and registering the server in SMF, even if writing the service bundle has been pretty easy with just the man pages...).


jlliagre 07-19-2007 07:57 AM

I believe the way to get a package based Application Server is through Java Enterprise System. Not sure the SMF integration is yet there though ...

crisostomo_enrico 07-19-2007 08:03 AM

Mmmh, that's why all the Java ES patch bundles I found...

By the way, following the URL, choosing the v. 9 (the newest) and "Get it" leads me to Java EE SDK, i.e. the site I started from!

I'm know checking

Thx again,

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