The device policy mechanism enables you to specify that processes that open a device require certain privileges. Devices that are protected by device policy can only be accessed by processes that are running with the privileges that the device policy specifies. The Solaris OS provides default device policy. For example, network interfaces such as hme0 require that the processes that access the interface be running with the net_rawaccess privilege. The requirement is enforced in the kernel. For more information about privileges, see Privileges (Overview).
In earlier Solaris OS releases, device nodes were protected by file permissions alone. For example, devices owned by group sys could be opened only by members of group sys. Now, file permissions do not predict who can open a device. Instead, devices are protected with file permissions and with device policy. For example, the /dev/ip file has 666 permissions. However, the device can only be opened by a process with the appropriate privileges.
The configuration of device policy can be audited. The AUE_MODDEVPLCY audit event records changes in device policy.
For more information about device policy, see the following: