System Administration Guide: Basic Administration

Diskless Client Management Features

You can use the smosservice and smdiskless commands to add and maintain diskless client support on a network. By using a name service, you can manage system information in a centralized manner so that important system information, such as host names, do not have to be duplicated for every system on the network.

You can perform the following tasks with the smosservice and smdiskless commands:

If you are performing a GRUB based boot on an x86 system, you need to manually set up the DHCP configuration. See x86: How to Prepare for Adding Diskless Clients in a GRUB Based Boot Environment for more information.

Note –

You can only use the diskless client commands to set up diskless client booting. You cannot use these commands to set up other services, such as remote installation or profile services. Set up remote installation services by including diskless client specifications in the sysidcfg file. For more information, see Solaris Express Installation Guide: Custom JumpStart and Advanced Installations.

Working With Diskless Client Commands

By writing your own shell scripts and using the commands shown in the following table, you can easily set up and manage your diskless client environment.

Table 6–5 Diskless Client Commands






Add OS services 



Delete OS services 



List OS services 



Manage OS service patches 



Add a diskless client to an OS server 



Delete a diskless client from an OS server 



List the diskless clients on an OS server 



Modify the attributes of a diskless client 

You can obtain help on these commands in two ways:

Required RBAC Rights for Diskless Client Management

You can use the smosservice and smdiskless commands as superuser. If you are using role-based access control (RBAC), you can use either a subset of or all of the diskless client commands, according to the RBAC rights to which they are assigned. The following table lists the RBAC rights that are required to use the diskless client commands.

Table 6–6 Required RBAC Rights for Diskless Client Management

RBAC Right 



Basic Solaris User, Network Management 

smosservice list

List OS services 



smosservice patch

List OS service patches 


smdiskless list

List diskless clients on an OS server 

Network Management 

smdiskless add

Add diskless clients 

System Administrator 

All commands 

All tasks 

Adding OS Services

A Solaris OS server is a server that provides operating system (OS) services to support diskless client systems. You can add support for an OS server or convert a stand-alone system to an OS server by using the smosservice command.

For each platform group and Solaris release that you want to support, you must add the particular OS service to the OS server. For example, if you want to support SPARC sun-4u systems running the Solaris Express release, you must add the Sun-4u/Solaris Express OS services to the OS server. For each diskless client that you support, you must add the OS service for that client to the OS server. For example, you would need to add OS services to support SPARC sun-4m systems or x86 based systems that run the Solaris 10 or Solaris 9 release, because they are different platform groups.

You must have access to the appropriate Solaris software CD or disk image to add OS services.

Adding OS Services When the OS Server Has Been Patched

When adding OS services to an OS server, you might see an error message stating that you have inconsistent versions of the OS running on the server and the OS that you are trying to add. This error message occurs when the installed version of the OS has packages that were previously patched, and the OS services being added do not have those packages patched, because the patches have been integrated into the packages.

For example, you might have a server that is running the current Solaris release or the Solaris 10 release. You might also have additional OS services loaded on this server, including the Solaris 9 SPARC sun-4m OS services that have been patched. If you try to add the Solaris 8 SPARC sun-4u OS services from a CD-ROM to this server, you could get the following error message:

Error: inconsistent revision, installed package appears to have been 
patched resulting in it being different than the package on your media. 
You will need to backout all patches that patch this package before 
retrying the add OS service option.