Starting with the Solaris 10 10/08 release, the Solaris SPARC bootstrap process has been redesigned to increase commonality with the Solaris x86 boot architecture. The improved Solaris boot architecture brings direct boot, ramdisk-based booting, and the ramdisk miniroot to the SPARC platform. These enabling technologies support the following functions:
Booting a system from additional file system types, such as a ZFS file system.
Booting a single miniroot for software installation from DVD, NFS, or HTTP
Additional improvements include significantly faster boot times, increased flexibility, and reduced maintenance requirements.
As part of this architecture redesign, the Solaris boot archives and the bootadm command, previously only available on the Solaris x86 platform, are now an integral part of the Solaris SPARC boot architecture.
Although the implementation of the Solaris SPARC boot has changed, no administrative procedures for booting a SPARC-based system have been impacted. Solaris installations have changed to include installing from a ZFS file system, but otherwise have not changed for the new boot architecture.