Oracle outlines plans for Solaris 11

The company has provided more details on its upcoming OS update and has promised to release an express version of Solaris 11 later in 2010
Written by Ben Woods, Contributor

Oracle has expanded upon on its plans for the release of Solaris 11, promising that the operating system update will be released in 2011 and that an express version will be launched in the interim.

The company announced the new details on Monday at Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco. The move quells fears that Oracle could drop support for the Unix-based OS that it acquired in its purchase of Sun.

Solaris 11 will be the culmination of more than 2,700 projects and 20 million development hours, according to the technology company.

"Oracle Solaris 11 is now raising [the capabilities of Solaris 10] by increasing system availability, delivering the scale and optimisations to run Oracle and enterprise applications faster with greater security, and delivering... efficiency through the completely virtualised operating system," said John Fowler, the head of the company's systems division, in a statement.

Solaris 11 can be deployed in the cloud as well as in traditional environments. It allows businesses to create multi-tiered application environments linked by virtual networking, which Oracle contends could help reduce implementation costs.

To mitigate patching and update errors, Solaris 11 has been given new tools that monitor the health of the system. The platform features telemetry support integration, whereby systems can receive notifications of known issues from Oracle support in order to remedy them before they can surface and cause outages.

In addition, a fast reboot feature means that if a restart is required, it will take "tens of seconds, versus tens of minutes", Oracle said.

Solaris 11 has been tested and certified for use on more than 1,000 Sparc and x86 systems, according to the manufacturer.

Ahead of the full Solaris 11 release, Oracle will launch Solaris 11 Express by the end of 2010. Oracle said that it hopes the express release will "be the path forward for developers, end users and partners using previous generations of earlier Solaris and OpenSolaris releases".

In August, OpenSolaris — a push to offer the proprietary OS in an open-source version — was abandoned after the board of governors unanimously voted to disband as a result of Oracle's silence over the project's future.

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